Our aim is to facilitate informed decision-making in patient care, research, education and management. We strive to make a vital contribution to the knowledge, efficiency and cost effectiveness of the health professions.
We have library services across all three hospital campuses offering various services. Our main library is based at The Alfred, called the Ian Potter Library. We also have the Caulfield Hospital Health Sciences Library and the Sandringham Library.
The Ian Potter Library
The library offers library orientation programs and training on the internet, library catalogue, and the various databases used in literature searching.
Enquire at the library if you are interested.
The library houses approximately 20,000 books. Staff need to register on their first visit to be assigned a barcode (bring your staff ID). The usual loan period is 2 weeks and books can be renewed if there are no other outstanding reservations.
A book return chute is available 24 hours a day and is situated in the corridor near the front entrance to the library.
Journals are generally not for loan.
The library has two card-operated photocopiers. Cards need to be purchased from the vending machine at a cost of $1.00, and then credit added using coins or notes. Copies cost 10c per page. Receipts are available on request.
For staff and post-graduate students photocopying on behalf of departments, speak to library staff regarding obtaining photocopying cards.
Inter-library Loans (Document Delivery)
This service is for requesting items that the library does not hold in its collection.
Inter-library loans are offered for hospital work-related information needs only. We do not charge for this service, but ask that you carefully prioritise what is essential before requesting as they are very costly (typically $15-40) per request.
In keeping with the Copyright Act, we are required to obtain a signed Copyright Declaration for each request. Request forms are available from the library.
Frequently asked questions
How does the library make decisions on journal subscriptions?
Journal subscriptions usually extend over many years and can represent a major budget commitment. For this reason decisions on journal subscriptions are made very carefully.
The Library has an Advisory Committee at both the Alfred and Caulfield Hospital campuses. The Advisory committees provide advice by reviewing usage of existing journal subscriptions each year, and examining the merits of any new suggested titles.
Final decisions on journal subscriptions are made by the Library Management Committee as part of the budget process.
Is it possible to suggest a new journal subscription?
Yes, suggestions for new journal subscriptions can be made to the Library Manager.
An assessment of demand is made by counting the prior number of inter-library loan requests, and other factors are considered.
Is it much cheaper to get a journal as an electronic subscription rather than a print subscription?
It is generally a little cheaper to purchase online-only journal subscriptions rather than print or print + online subscriptions.
Increasingly libraries purchase 'packages' of online journals, which can increase the discount of required titles. Packages however often include titles for which there is little or no demand.
Is there any information on how often a specific journal is used?
Yes the library has usage data provided by publishers which tell us how often full-text articles are downloaded from specific journals. This information can be used to compare one title against another, and to determine what are the most heavily used journals, and whether the average cost per article downloaded is high or low.
How can library users get articles from journals the library doesn’t have?
The Library’s Document Delivery Service obtains copies of articles, book loans and other material which cannot be found in the Library's collections.
This service is available to staff and research students of Alfred Health, the Baker-IDI Institute and the Burnet Institute. The Library will process a maximum of 5 requests per person per week.
An online form is available to request documents.
Before making a request please check the Library's Journal List or catalogue for availability.
Staff and students of Monash University, La Trobe University and Deakin University should deal directly with their respective university library for document delivery.
Why do journals sometimes disappear from the ejournal list?
A journal can be cancelled due to low usage, or the removal of access can be out of the library’s control such as when the journal is part of a large package, or consortium arrangement, and contents are linked to the holdings of another partner library.
Do all library users have access to the same range of journals?
No. At Alfred Health staff and students can often have affiliations to different institutions. Access to journals will differ due to library subscriptions provided by these respective institutions.
PC’s on different institutional networks also influence access to e-resources, as does whether staff or students are using passwords for authentication.
Virtual Library Service
The following links are provided to assist library users at the Alfred Health Network sites, and AMREP institutions access electronic resources. Due to licence restrictions, certain resources can only be used on the respective institutional computer networks indicated.
No restriction resources
Alfred Health only
- Alfred Health Library Catalogue
- Clinicians Health Channel
- Medline (Ovid)
- Embase (Ovid) / Embase (Embase.com)
- Springer for Hospitals & Health
- BMJ Best Practice
- ProQuest Medical & Nursing Ejournals Database (Alfred Health, Baker & Burnet networks)
- Joanna Briggs Institute Evidence-Based Nursing Resources
- Libraries Australia
- Alfred Health Athens Registration
- Alfred Health Athens Database Quicklinks
- My Athens Page