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THE LIBRARY - PAST AND PRESENT


Establishment - The IMR Library began as a reading room when the institute was founded in 1901. It was later moved to the South Block when the building was built in 1924.

The War and Independence - During the Second World War in 1941, the institute was vacated and all valuable equipment and records was moved to the College of Medicine in Singapore according to the instructions of the Director of Health Services. A librarian, Wong Peng Wah was among the staff that moved to Singapore. Unfortunately, everything that was moved to Singapore was destroyed in the war. With the need to step up research into the many health problems facing the country, additional building, the Central Block was erected in 1954 and the library moved to a space of 2,300 square feet on the ground floor of this building. After independence, with the acceptance of IMR to train medical laboratory technologists for Malaysia and scientists for Asean and other Western Pacific countries, a new building had to be erected in 1977. With the moving of various facilities and laboratories into the new building, the library was allocated additional space.

Today - the library occupies the front wing of the Central Block where Serial Collection and Serial Retrospective Collection are located at the ground floor and Rare Collection is on the first floor, while the Monograph Collection is at first floor and part of the ground floor of the South Block.

The library functions as:

  • Central Depository for all MOH publications since 1992. (Ref. : The Director General of Health Circular no. 2, 1992);
  • Assigning unique numbers prior to publication of written material for all hospitals and institutions within the MOH. (Ref. : The Director General of Health Circular no. 3, 1996);
  • Responsible for the sale and distribution of IMR publications;
  • National Focal Point for the WHO biomedical information programme;
  • Coordinating library for South East Asian Information Center (SEAMIC) especially for Electronic Document Delivery Service (EDDS);
  • Coordinating library for all institutions and hospital libraries within the MOH jurisdiction (Ref. : (17) dlm. KKM178/(8)Bhg.3 dated 28 Sept. 2005 from Secretary-General of MOH to the IMR Library Unit Head)