Library Policies

library policies and borrowing privileges

Library Users Code of Conduct Borrowing Privileges Print Reserves
Lost and Found Loan Periods Special Borrowing Privileges
Study Rooms Renewals Special Collections
After Hours Access Holds Interlibrary Loan
Printing Returns Donating Materials
Photocopying and Scanning Overdue Fines and Lost Book Fees Suggestions for Purchase

Library Users Code of Conduct

Animals - Only service animals are allowed in the library. A service animal is defined as any animal individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability. Such tasks can include guiding a person with impaired vision, alerting a person with impaired hearing to the presence of people or sounds, pulling a wheelchair, etc. The term service animal does not apply to personal pets.

Cell phones - Cell phones and other electronic devices should be set to a silent mode when entering the library. Users are encouraged to use the entrance areas or stairwells for brief, quiet telephone conversations.

Children - Children under the age of 14 need to be accompanied by a responsible adult, 18 years or older. Children are not allowed to use computers and should not be left unattended. If children become noisy and disruptive, they need to be taken out of the library.

Confidentiality of library records - All library registration and circulation records are considered confidential information.

Food and Beverages - Non-alcoholic beverages in securely covered containers are allowed inside the library. Food is permitted in the Linder Lounge, which includes beverages and snack items in vending machines, an ice machine, microwave, and small sink.

Paging - The library does not provide a paging system. However, users may use phones located on the 6th and 7th floor to accept a page they have received on their personal pagers.

Personal belongings - Users are advised not to leave personal items unattended anywhere in the Library. Users need to report missing items at the Circulation Desk and Security will be notified. Items other than personal items (e.g. wallets, purse, and cell phones) will be kept at the “Lost and Found,” located at the Circulation Desk. Personal items will be turned over to Security (Phone: 402-559-5111).

Phones - Phones are located on the 6th floor inside the library entrance and on the 7th floor to the right of the open staircase. Users may only make local calls on the phones provided.

Tobacco - The University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) became tobacco-free, as of August 24, 2009. This policy prohibits tobacco use in the library, including but is not limited to cigarettes, cigars, and pipes.

Lost and Found

Items that are found in the library will be sorted into two groups:

  • Group 1: Items such as clothing, lunch bags, cups, bottles, flash drives and other items that do not provide a personal identity will be put in the “Lost and Found” located at the Circulation Desk. Small items such as watches, jewelry and flash drives will go into the safe.
  • Group 2: Personal items such as purses, wallets, cell phones and computers will remain at the Circulation Desk for one hour. If a phone number can be found, Circulation staff will attempt to contact the person regarding the missing items. The Circulation staff will not go through the person’s purse, but will open the wallet to secure a name to contact the person. After one hour, Security will be called and the item will be turned over to them. The person will then need to contact the Security Department (402-559-5111) to retrieve the missing item.

Study Rooms

The library has 16 locked study rooms located on the 7th floor of the library and are available to UNMC students, faculty or staff. To use a room, a key must be checked out from the Circulation Desk. The keys are checked out for a 4-hour period. They may be renewed twice. Customers that return a key late are charged $1 per hour. When leaving a study room, make sure the door is closed and that you remove all materials from the room so that the room is ready for the next user. Rooms cannot be reserved. Circulation also has white-board markers and erasers that maybe checked out to use on the white-boards that are available in each room.

After Hours Access

It is the policy of UNMC to provide 24 hour access to the library for faculty and house staff who may need access to emergency patient care information. The Security Department provides procedures for after hours access:


  1. UNMC faculty and house staff who need access to patient care information while the library is closed should contact security in order to arrange access to the library.
  2. A security officer will escort the physician or designated staff member into the library where both will sign in with their name, department, and extension. The security officer will remain with the physician/staff member throughout the stay in the library.
  3. The physician/staff member will immediately retrieve the item(s) needed. Minimal time should be spent in the library. Ideally a MEDLINE or catalog search will have identified material needed prior to entering the library.
  4. A maximum of 3 items can be removed from the library under these circumstances. Each item needs to be recorded by the barcode number in the back of the material, as well as by name, volume number, etc. in order to identify the material.
  5. The following day the library staff will contact the physician to verify the material checked out and the due dates.
  6. Additional limitations:
    • Such a visit to the library should take no more than 1 hour
    • Security will escort a maximum of 2 persons into the library
    • Security-escorted access to the library is to be used only when patient care information is needed in an emergency situation, and is not to be used to substitute for routine access to the library


  • Reference Computers - To defray the high cost of paper and toner, the library charges to print materials from the Reference computers. The library printer does two-sided copying and the charge is 5 cents per sheet of paper. There is no charge for cover sheets. Copies may be picked up and paid for at the Circulation Desk. $2 print cards are also available for purchase at the Circulation Desk.
  • Cluster Computers - Print policies from Computer Cluster printers within the library are set and governed by the ITS Department.

Photocopying and Scanning

The library provides one photocopy machine and one microfiche/film reader/printer for public use. The copier is coin operated (10 cents per black and white page and 25 cents per color page), but will also accept $1, $5, and $10 bills. Copy cards are unfortunately no longer available. The copier also serves as a black and white and color scanner, which can email documents to your email address at no cost. Please remember when photocopying or scanning that all copyright rules apply.

Borrowing Privileges

All faculty, staff, and students from UNMC and The Nebraska Medical Center personnel may borrow library materials by presenting their UNMC or Nebraska Medical Center photo identification card and completing additional registration information at the library Circulation Desk. Privileges will not be granted without a valid UNMC or Nebraska Medical Center photo identification card. All materials checked out on your ID are your responsibility. Please be careful who you loan your ID to and who you check out for. Special borrowing privileges may also be granted to those not affiliated with these institutions.

Loan Periods

Length of loan is dictated by material type. Loans are subject to recall at any time. Some materials, including reference, reserve, and anatomical models, may be designated as non-circulating. 

  • Books circulate for two weeks.
  • Review and residency books circulate for one week.
  • All journals and leisure reading periodicals circulate for three days.
  • Multimedia and anatomical models circulate for one week.


A loan period can be extended in person at the Circulation desk or by phone at 402-559-4006. You do not need the item to renew. Renewals can be granted on the following items as long as no one has placed a hold.

  • Books can be renewed twice, for two weeks.
  • Review and residency books can be renewed one, for one week.
  • All journals and leisure reading periodicals can be renewed twice, for three days. 
  • Multimedia and anatomical models can be renewed twice, for one week, depending on demand. 


If an item is checked out to another customer, you may place a hold on that item. When the item is returned, you will be contacted via email that the item you requested is available and on the hold shelf at Circulation. We will hold the item for four days before it is returned to the collection.

Materials that are not checked out and are currently available cannot be placed on hold. Because of the shortage of staff, the library does not have a service to pull materials from the shelves and place them at Circulation to be picked up later.


Two books drops are available for returns on the third floor of Wittson Hall, across from the elevators, and at the Circulation desk. Media, models, and reserve items must be returned to the Circulation Desk.

Overdue Fines and Lost Book Fees

  • Overdue notices are a courtesy. All notices are sent out via email. Please make sure that you keep the library informed of any changes to your email address.
  • Overdue items are assessed a service charge of 20 cents per day, per item with a maximum of $10 per item. There is a 4 day grace period on most items except reserve items, study room keys and anatomical models. The fine on hourly items is $1 per hour with a one hour grace period. The fines on models are $1 a day with a maximum fine of $50. The service charge is accrued from the first day, so a charge of $1.00 will be assessed on the fifth day if the item is not returned before that day. Service charges are paid at the Circulation Desk.
  • Lost books are assessed a standard fee of $35, which includes processing costs, and will be charged on books, single issues of journals, and bound journals, in addition to the full replacement cost of the item. Overdue fines may also be charged if the lost item is not reported to the library within the check-out period.
  • Unpaid library charges will result in your ID being blocked from checking out materials from the UNMC Library, not being able to register for classes, request transcripts, access records on the student website, or request any type of enrollment verification.  

Print Reserves

The library allows faculty and students to place materials on reserve at the Circulation Desk for use by other UNMC students. This service is designed to provide a controlled, ready access to items that are used for course readings. The materials are listed by course number or by the faculty name and are searchable in the Helix Catalog. UNMC faculty, staff, and students may borrow these materials for 2 hours, with one 2-hour renewal if the item is not needed by another patron, for use in the library only. Items such as the ACLS and General or Essential Surgery books may be checked out for 7 days. The reserve item with the sticker stating it is able to leave for one week may be checked out, provided the staff member manually changes the due date in the computer.

For information about placing an item on print reserve, please contact Sue Clark at 402-559-4006 or email The library currently does not provide an electronic reserve service.

Special Borrowing Privileges

Nebraska residents who are members of health related, scientific, teaching, clergy, and legal professions or employees of a health related institution or firm in Nebraska may be extended the following borrowing privileges. Documentation of their profession (e.g. medical license or affiliation with a health related institution or firm) will be required before completing the special privilege forms. Reference and Reserve materials may not be checked out. 

  • UNO, UNK, or UNL faculty and staff may check out up to 5 books and journals total by showing a valid University photo ID.
  • UNO, UNK, or UNL students may check out up to 5 books by showing a University valid photo ID. Journals may not be checked out. 
  • Creighton faculty may check out up to 5 books by showing a valid University photo ID. Creighton faculty may not check out journals.
  • Nebraska professionals may check out up to 5 books by showing a valid photo ID. Journals may not be checked out.
  • Nebraska residents may receive limited borrowing privileges to the CHIRS (Consumer Health) collection by presenting a valid Nebraska driver's license or state ID card. Consumers are limited to five books maximum. Nebraska consumers may not check out journals.
  • Out-of-state residents who are patients (or family of patients) at The Nebraska Medical Center or Bellevue Medical Center may qualify for limited borrowing privileges by presenting a valid out-of-state ID card and a letter of referral from a medical center health professional.
  • Nebraska Library Association College and University Faculty are granted special borrowing privileges of up to 10 books. Nebraska Library Association College and University Faculty may not check out journals. Students from these same campuses are not granted any borrowing privileges. They must restrict their use of library materials to in-house only. See the College and University Library Borrowing Agreement for more information.