When the COVID-19 pandemic started spreading worldwide, nearly 400,000 physical items were on loan to 5,674 libraries via the WorldShare ILL network. As libraries begin to reopen, ILL professionals need to know if, and when, to send items back to their home library. If items are mailed to libraries that are not open and not able to receive them, there is a high probability they will be lost or damaged, or libraries will incur additional fees because items are undeliverable.
At the request of the ILL community, and to support this urgent need, OCLC is providing an easy way for libraries to register and maintain their status, as well as view the status of other libraries. The Physical ILL Return and Lending Status Map contains two data points for each library:
- Is my library or mailroom accepting physical ILL returns?
- Is my library lending physical items via ILL?
REALM Project: Happening Now
OCLC / 20 May 2020
Project update: Phase 1 literature review and testing
Phase 1 of the research is focusing on commonly found and frequently handled/circulated materials, especially in U.S. public libraries.
- A review of published scientific research is underway and will be publicly released. The purpose is to gather and evaluate existing research about SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) related to the following research questions:
- How might the virus spread through public library general operations?
- How long does the virus survive on material surfaces through environmental attenuation?
- How effective are various prevention and decontamination measures that are readily available to public libraries in the near term?
- A technical testing plan from Battelle detailing how materials will be tested in their lab. This is expected to be released on the site by May 29, 2020.
- Battelle began the first round of testing of materials on May 13, 2020. Five items commonly found in public libraries, which are also in high circulation and expected to arrive back in public libraries in large volumes were selected for this round. The materials were provided to Battelle by Columbus Metropolitan Library, and the tests will determine the length of time the COVID-19 virus may live on the surface of the materials and the results on this first round are expected to be released in mid-June. The items include:
- hardcover book, made of buckram cloth
- softcover book cover
- pages inside of book
- plastic protective cover
- DVD case
We will send only OUR materials at this time. We can’t confirm all of the lenders are open and ready for business.
Make sure the record you are viewing says:
“Available State Library ”
We are quarantining materials for 14 days after they return to us for the time being.
Also be aware if you order the labels from the Post Office to help you track items, they a running behind keeping up with the demand.
If you have any questions please give me a call.
Start at the “Advanced Search” page.
Change “Format” and “Held by Library” as shown.
Do NOT put anything in the “Search Term” boxes.
Available for free. They have packs of 50. You may order up to 4 packs at a time. There is a main label and then a customer receipt on the label book. You can write information that will help keep track of transaction numbers or titles. Check the margin for the link to the USPS page. Did I mention that the labels and the service are free?
New items generally aren’t loaned for the 1st year from most libraries in Worldcat. We only loan in-state current year items so our patrons have a chance to enjoy recent materials. So you can ask us to purchase new items right here:
Give it a try!