Call for Papers

You are cordially invited to submit a paper to the 17th Congress of The Association for Health Information and Libraries in Africa (AHILA) Botswana 2023 on the 16th – 20th October 2023 in Gaborone, Botswana. The theme of the conference is “Equitable Access to Health Information: The Key to Better Health”.

AHILA was founded in Nairobi on Thursday 23 August 1984 under the name – Association of Medical Librarians in Africa (AMLA). The name later changed in 1988 to the Association for Health Information and Libraries in Africa (AHILA), to cater for those who are interested in health information issues and may not be librarians. To date has over 252 members from 46 member countries, 15 country chapters, 16 international conferences and more than 45 partners and collaborators worldwide. AHILA members are librarians, information specialists, organisations and commercial companies with an interest in health sciences information. AHILA recognises that tremendous progress has been made toward providing health information in Africa, in part because of technological advancements. Nevertheless, ensuring that information is accessible, comprehensible, and usable remains problematic, and there is need in many settings to address issues such as computer skills, literacy, and the infrastructure to access information.

It is on that premise that AHILA developed a vision to become a leader in promoting access and use of health information in Africa through provision of up-to-date and relevant health information. The association encourages professional development of health librarians, promote resource sharing in Africa through development and standardisation of health databases. The AHILA realised that in order to achieve its goal it has to actively engage with key stakeholders, for technical support and sometimes funding of some projects or capacity building initiatives. Such realization saw the forming of partnerships with institutions or organization including National Library of Medicine, World Health Organisation, ITOCA, INASP, Network of African Medical Librarians (NAMLA), HINARI (WHO and Major Publishers introduced in 2002 by former UN secretary General Kofi Anan at UN summit).

The 17th Congress of The Association for Health Information and Libraries in Africa (AHILA) is a deeper and practical interpretation of the health information. It thus aims to draw lessons and benchmarks around digital technologies, data science, research, modern library spaces and structures as contributors to equitable access to health information and services. It will provide participants with the tools necessary to implement the above-mentioned lessons and benchmarks by offering hands-on workshops on evidence synthesis (systematic reviews), research and data manage (RedCap), information brokering and array of health information tools. You are invited to submit papers asdressing the themes and or sub-themes below: [All submitted papers will be subjected to double-blind peer review process. Participants will be given a soft copy certificate of attendance and the conference proceedings will be published in PDF on the conference website]

Main ThemeEquitable Access to Health Information: The Key to Better Health

Conference Sub-Themes

  1. 1. Digital Technologies and Health Information Systems
  • Health Information Professional in the Digital age: The required skills and competencies
  • The Application of Digital Technologies in Health Science Libraries (mLearning, eLearning, mHealth, etc.)
  • The Application of Artificial Intelligence in Health Information Services
  • The Use of Digital Technologies in Evidence-Based Healthcare Practices


  1. 2. Data Science and Research Driven Health Information
  • Health Librarians' Roles in Open Data Science (Policy Formulations, Data Governance, Data Management Systems, Research Data Management, Data Use for Decision-Making etc.)
  • Health Sciences Librarians' Roles in Research and Community Service
  • Health Information Professionals as Agents in Improving the Quality of Research and healthcare professionals' competencies (digital literacy, information literacy, etc.)


  1. 3. Equity to Health Information and Services
  • Health Informatics: A Dream or Reality
  • Information Literacy in Health Profession Education
  • Health Information libraries' roles in Healthcare Professions Education Curriculum Development, and Implementation


  1. 4. Rethinking Health Libraries and Librarianship in the 21st Century
  • Health Library Spaces in the 21st Century
  • Developing Health Library Structures for the 21st Century (Organizational and operational structures)
  • Embedded Librarianship in Health
  • COVID Era/Post-COVID Libraries and Librarianship: Experiences, Opportunities, and Challenges
  • Against All the Odds: Improving Health Library Resources and Services


Abstracts should include:

  • An abstract of approximately 300 - 500 words.
  • A summary of the author(s) details (name, institution, position) and brief biographical statement of no more than 50 words.


Important dates:

Call for Abstracts: 19th January 2023

Deadline for Abstracts Submission:  15th April 2023

Acceptance note: 30th May 2023

Deadline for Submission of Full Paper: 20th July 2023

Deadline for Submission of PowerPoint Presentation: 22nd September 2023


Target Audience

  • Information Professionals
  • Healthcare Professionals
  • Policy makers
  • Academia
  • Researchers
  • Scientists
  • Students
  • Others


Pre-Conference Workshops

1. Systematic Reviews - AHILA and NAML

2. Data Science - DSI-Africa & NAML

3. Red-Cap for beginners – The University of Botswana eHealth Unit

4. Health Librarians as Information Brokers - AHILA & ITOCA

5. Evidence-Based Information Sources for Healthcare professionals - Research4Life

6. Health Information Products and Services - NLM


Click here to start the submission process>>

Author Guidelines

Author instructions (abstracts for papers, posters, and lightning talks)

The abstract should:

  • Be written in English-language, approximately 300 - 500 words, double-spaced and Times New Roman, 12 pt.
  • Provide a summary of the author(s) details (name, affiliation, position) and a brief biographical statement of no more than 50 words.
  • Be structured to include Introduction, Objectives, Methods, Results, and Conclusion.
  • Use APA 7th edition style of referencing.

The conference editorial board reserves the right to edit abstracts to ensure anonimity.


  • Paper presentations-15 minutes
  • Lightning talk presentations- 5 minutes
  • Poster- 1 hour in-person presence


  • Translating services will be provided where need be for French and Portuguese.
  • All withdrawals or cancellations must be done in writing and emailed to Mrs Boipuso Mologanyi ( Include the full title of your abstract, abstract control number, and author name.

Start here to submit a paper to this conference.
Step one of the submission process