Quite a lot of things, actually. From HealthFinder.gov:
- American Diabetes Month
- Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month
- Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month
- COPD Awareness Month
- Lung Cancer Awareness Month
On a lighter note, from Wikipedia, it’s also:
- National Pomegranate Month (no links better than the eHow site were popping up, but you get the idea!)
- Movember (perhaps of interest to health sciences librarians: it is a month where men grow moustaches as a promotional and fundraising activity for men’s health issues!)
So what do all these causes have in common? The same thing any cause that picks a month/week/day to celebrate and raise awareness: they’re promoting and advocating for their issues. Unfortunately, National Medical Librarians’ Month in October had to give way to all these other important groups, but November is worth calling out for one BIG reason: elections!
Here in the Midwest, the midterm election brought a lot of change, and what that means for us in both our professional and personal lives is for the pundits to discuss. I would just like to point out that with the changing of the guard, there are going to be a lot of new people who need to hear about the issues close to our hearts in the medical and health sciences information arena! Consider this my call for us all to use the wonderful resources below to contact our state and national government representatives, or to write letters to local newspapers (you could also promote some of the causes above, maybe earning some brownie points…):
- From USA.gov, how to contact your elected officials, from President Obama to your state representatives.
- Visit MLA’s advocacy and policy page for lots of good materials, including official position statements
- The GMR has a wonderful advocacy page, with materials that help you promote and advocate within your organization; and really, your organization could include your entire state, region, or even country!
You can write a letter at any time of the year, but November, with its important disease awareness raising, pomegranates and moustaches, not to mention its election, seems like a particularly opportune time, don’t you think?
If you do write a letter or otherwise forward the medical librarian cause, we’d love to hear about it in the comments!
(and one last thing: MLA’s elections are happening right now! be part of the process, and vote! –note, this is the electronic ballot link and requires your login credentials.)