A study reported in 1975 of interlibrary loan requests submitted to the Information Dissemination Service (serving the information needs of health professionals in a surrounding 9-county area) located in the Health Sciences Library of the State University of New York, Buffalo, broken down into 2 samples (sample A: all requests during a 3-month period in 1972 from 4 major teaching hospitals, 1,802 interlibrary loan requests; sample B: a 10% random sample of all requests from a broad group of health professionals over a 3-year period, 1970-73, 2,280 interlibrary loan requests), showed thatfor both samples 3% of the journal titles satisfied “approximately 20%” of the journal requests.           (Source)

A 1975 study of interlibrary loan requests initiated by 21 hospitals in central and western Massachusetts for their patrons during 1975 (4,368 requests for copies of periodical articles from 1,071 different journals), showed that:

                12 (1.12%) journal titles accounted for 439 (10.05%) requested articles;

                47 (4.39%) journal titles accounted for 1,059 (24.24%) requested articles;

                160 (14.94%) journal titles accounted for 2,227 (50.98%) requested articles;

                1,071 (100%) journal titles accounted for 4,368 (100%) requested articles.                (Source)

A 1977 study at the Treadwell Library of the Massachusetts General Hospital investigating all requests for journals (both circulation use and interlibrary loan requests) over a year’s time (79,369 requests) showed thatthe 647 journal titles held in the library satisfied 75,039 (94.5%) of the requests, while interlibrary loan had to be used to satisfy the remaining 4,330 (5.5%) requests. To satisfy these interlibrary loan requests itself the library would have had to subscribe to an additional 1,352 journals.                   (Source)

Dr. David Kohl

 "Libraries in the digital age are experiencing the most profound transformation since ancient Mesopotamian scribes first began gathering and organizing cuneiform tablets."

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