Health Education Media Library
The Health Education Media Library is a community-sourced open access repository of medical, dental and health education media assets including images, videos and audio clips. The goal of the project is to provide high quality assets that are representative of a diverse population of both patients and health care providers (emphasizing representation across different ethnicities, genders, ages, body types etc.) and inclusive of stigmatized health care topics. The assets in this collection will be made available under a CC BY-NC 4.0 Creative Commons License, which allows educators in the medical, dental and health sciences to freely use the media in the creation of their own teaching materials. The project will also be community-sourced, ensuring that the assets are meeting the needs of health educators and that the library will be a dynamic and growing collection of images and videos.
Representation in the Curriculum
This project has been driven in large part by a lack of diverse representation in medical education material. This problem was highlighted by the recent pivot to digital delivery in the Schulich MD program and the challenges of finding either open or paid images representative of diverse patient populations.
A lack of representation in curriculum and course content can have significant implications for the student experience. Students from underrepresented populations can feel alienated  or excluded from the curriculum, and thus from the learning community. Many studies also show that underrepresentation of populations in health education can lead to poorer health outcomes for patients from those populations due to clinicians having a lack of comfort or ability to diagnose and care for them [2, 3]. One of the primary mandates of this collection is to improve representation in health education curricula and content by making diverse media more readily available to educators.
- Create a community-sourced repository of images and videos that can be used in the creation of digital content for medical and health science education
- Create a tool for ongoing community submissions of additional assets to ensure that the collection is continuously growing
- Provide adequate training, support, and equipment to contributors to ensure high quality images and videos
- Ensure privacy of all patients is protected and that consent is appropriately obtained and documented
- Ensure all assets are properly tagged and catalogued according to objectives for ease of searching
- Collect assets that represent the symptoms and investigations of multiple health professions and ailments
- Collect assets with diverse representation among different ethnicities, genders, ages, and body types
Funding amount: $66,960
This project has been funded through the Government of Ontario's Virtual Learning Strategy (VLS). For more details on VLS, please visit the eCampus Ontario webpage here.
Accessing the Collection
The media collection is currently being hosted through Scholarship@Western with Western Libraries. The link to the main collection will be posted below shortly.
How to Contribute
We are currently seeking participants who would like to be involved in the collection of assets. Images, videos, and audio will typically be collected from real patients in a clinical setting.
You will be provided with equipment, training, and support for the collection and submission of media assets. You will also have the opportunity to inform the scope of the initial collection. If you are interested in collecting media for the repository, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
NOTE: If you have other media that you would like to build or contribute, please reach out. We are happy to work with individuals on the collection or development of other assets for the library.
You are able to submit requests or suggests for media. Requests will be added to a master list. However, our ability to fulfill requests is largely dependent on the volunteers participating in the collection of media. You may submit a request to email@example.com.
We are looking for faculty members, clinicians, educators, students, staff and others to participate in the media library committee. This will require participation in monthly meetings. If you are interested in informing the direction of the collection, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Many of the images and videos in the collection are real patients. Patient consent is a top priority of the project. All media contributors will complete a basic training module outlining the process for obtaining consent. Before media collection is able to commence at at clinical insitution, the privacy office will be informed of the project and the consent process. A copy of the standard consent form is available here: Consent Form.
We invite contributions from health care providers and students across Ontario. The following institutions are currently actively involved in the management of the collection.
 St George’s University of London. Mind the Gap: A Handbook on Clinical Signs on Black and Brown Skin. 2020. Available at https://www.sgul.ac.uk/news/mind-the-gap-a-handbook-of-clinical-signs-on-black-and-brown-skin (accessed August 2021).
 Ali, K., McColl, E., Tredwin, C. et al. Addressing racial inequalities in dental education: decolonising the dental curricula. Br Dent J 230, 165–169 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41415-020-2598-z
 Lester JC, Taylor SC, Chren MM. Under-representation of skin of colour in dermatology images: not just an educational issue. Br J Dermatol. 2019 Jun;180(6):1521-1522. doi: 10.1111/bjd.17608. PMID: 31157429.
 Tsai, Jennifer; Ucik, Laura; Baldwin, Nell; Hasslinger, Christopher; George, Paul MD, MHPE Race Matters? Examining and Rethinking Race Portrayal in Preclinical Medical Education, Academic Medicine: July 2016 - Volume 91 - Issue 7 - p 916-920 doi: 10.1097/ACM.0000000000001232