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MMC Gift Shop First in Nation to Offer Nook Rental Program


Memorial Medical Center’s Gift Shop is offering patients, visitors and employees the opportunity to rent Nook e-reader tablets through a first-of-its-kind partnership with Barnes & Noble Booksellers.

Available since May 6, the Nooks cost $2 an hour or $25 a day to rent. Each is preloaded with a half-dozen magazines, several game apps and Internet access; it’s not possible, however, to purchase or add anything onto the Nook.

Memorial is the first hospital in the nation to rent Nooks for use in this manner, said Phyllis Roate, senior volunteer specialist. The Gift Shop staff and volunteers came up with their own training and developed the rental agreement.

To rent a Nook, an individual has to present a credit or debit card and leave his or her driver’s license with the Gift Shop staff until the Nook has been returned; those who fail to return the Nook are charged $250. Headphones are available for purchase for those who desire them, and people who opt to rent a Nook for 24 hours receive a charger to use with it.

Roate said she pursued this idea to help enhance the selection of magazine titles available to read, as well as be more environmentally friendly. In the future, she said she hopes to load a few books – some classics – onto the Nooks.

The Gift Shop has 10 Nooks available for rent.