By Michael Haederle

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HSC Faculty Member Joins Federal Panel Overseeing Biomedical Journal Database

Biomedical research journals number in the thousands and are published around the world, with new ones coming online each year.

Jonathan Eldredge, MLS, PhD, an associate professor at The University of New Mexico Health Sciences Library & Informatics Center, has been named to the federal panel that determines which journals are indexed on MEDLINE, the world’s premier database for biomedical research.

The National Library of Medicine’s Literature Selection Technical Review Committee (LSTRC) meets three times a year to review and recommend journals for inclusion in MEDLINE – which in turn serves as the basis for PubMed, the online resource that sees 3.3 billion searches annually.

“This committee is extremely prestigious,” says HSCLIC executive director Melissa Rethlefsen, MSLS. “This is a major honor for him and us.”

Eldredge, who also holds appointments in the UNM College of Population Health and the UNM School of Medicine, has extensive experience as an editor and reviewer for scholarly publications, including the Journal of the American Medical Association, American Journal of Public Health, Evidence-Based Library and Information Science and BMC Biomedical Digital Libraries.

The world of biomedical publishing is incredibly competitive, and publishers are always looking for an edge, Eldredge says. “It’s kind of a high-profile thing to want to be indexed in MEDLINE and PubMed,” he says. “There’s a little bit of quality assurance that it’s a pretty good journal if you’re looking at it in PubMed.”

LSTRC members meet to make recommendations for adding new candidates to the MEDLINE database based on each journal’s scientific content, quality, importance, editorial policies and subject matter.

“It’s a high-profile situation where you have to deflect inquiries,” Eldredge says. “People will want to influence you in a variety of ways.”

Eldredge, who earned his master of library science degree at the University of Michigan School of Information, came to UNM in 1986 as chief of collection development at what was then the Medical Center Library, with an appointment as a lecturer in the School of Medicine.

Through the years he has taken on multiple roles. Today, he teaches quantitative medicine, epidemiology and biostatistics to medical students. He also co-teaches a research methods course for physician assistant students, a biomedical informatics course for master of science in clinical research students, and a public health course required of all public health graduate students.

“I’ve enjoyed working at UNM,” Eldredge says. “It’s the kind of place where you have a good idea that you can actually get things done, and at other institutions it seems a lot harder.”

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