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Accessing public health information: a preliminary comparison of CABI's global health database and medline.Aalai, Elham; Gleghorn, Colette; Webb, Anne E; Glover, Steven W; Kostoris Library, Christie Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester M20 4BX, UK. (2009-03)Background: Access to a comprehensive public health index or database has been identified as problematic for health professionals. Public health literature contains many varied sources including reports, journal articles, and grey literature. Traditional biomedical databases such as medline often do not meet the needs of public health workers and researchers. Aim/Methods: The aim of the study was to examine the unique content of the global health database, by comparing it to the medline database. Pre-determined terms were used as baseline comparators where controlled vocabulary definitions in each database were sufficiently matched. Retrieved results were stored and compared using EndNote libraries. Results: Results obtained from the terms used in the comparison study protocol suggest that the global health database holds a high proportion of unique records in comparison to medline. The largest overlap of duplicates from the global health database perspective came from the coccidiomycosis results set which contained 70.5% of references retrieved from both databases. Analyzing the results from a medline perspective, the subject with the largest overlap was dengue, with a 43% overlap. Conclusion: The results of this study show that the global health database is complimentary to medline in the subject areas of public health and global health.
Interlending and document supply trends in NHS North West health libraries 2003/2004 to 2006/2007.Glover, Steven W; Addison, John; Gleghorn, Colette; Aalai, Elham; Annis, Shan; Kostoris Library, Christie Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester, UK. (2009-03)Background: The Library and Information for Health Network North West (LIHNN) represents health libraries in Cheshire, Cumbria, Greater Manchester, Isle of Man, Lancashire, Merseyside and Wirral. LIHNN members take part in a regional co-operative network supporting interlending and document supply. Methods: Data were analysed over a 4-year period to identify trends and patterns. In addition, a literature review was conducted to compare trends seen in NHS libraries to those trends seen in other sectors and in other countries. Results/trends: Between 2003/2004 and 2006/2007 there was a significant drop in document supply activity reported by NHS North West libraries from 59 321 to 37 134 copies, representing a fall of 37.4%. During the same period, lending between libraries stayed constant. Discussion: The NHS supplies a significant number of documents to its users and it is investigating a number of options to increase efficiencies. The observed fall in document supply activity has been reported in several sectors and has been attributed to a number of cofactors. Although the fall in document supply activity is expected to continue, a critical mass of information is likely to remain behind subscription barriers and this, in turn, will necessitate supply from external sources.