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Data Flash: RIP PubMed Health

Posted by on October 28th, 2018 Posted in: Data Science, Public Health
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poster on clinical effectiveness research

This is not exactly a data post, but, the loss of a trusted source for clinical effectiveness research will have its effects on the dataverse.  PubMed Health is being discontinued as of this coming Wednesday.  As any of my colleagues can tell you, I’m taking the loss of PubMed Health hard– I loved showing it to people at various conferences, and using it myself– I found it a wonderful mid-point between MedlinePlus.gov and PubMed.gov, and it also had some great methodology resources and a glossary.  All of its content will be findable in other ways though!

In thinking about how to proceed in future with finding clinical effectiveness research searching, I did some exploring and gathered my findings into a poster I presented recently at the Washington State Public Health Association conference.  Below, in list form, is the poster content–feel free to contact me at glusker (AT) uw.edu if you have any questions! And please send any suggestions for additions to these lists!

Check Out These Ways to Find Research on Clinical Effectiveness:

  • PubMed.gov has filters for systematic reviews and guidelines
  • Who cares? Seek out the organizations that care about the topic (Kids? American Academy of Pediatrics!)
  • If you or your local health sciences library have databases, check them out—for example, nursing database CINAHL has great content
  • NLM’s “Bookshelf” is becoming a good resource for guidelines https://is.gd/NLMBookshelf
  • The National Guidelines Clearinghouse will soon be re-released by ECRI and they have said it will be open access!
  • ClinicalTrials.gov records often link to related publications
  • For public health—try www.thecommunityguide.org and NICHSR OneSearch (a federated search of four public health databases)

Ramp Up Your Google Search Skills! 

  • Try this string, created by P.F. Anderson for a recent Twitter chat: guidelines|white-paper|standards|report|protocol| procedure|policy filetype:pdf (site:org OR site:gov) [fill in the condition])
  • Try GoogleScholar (scholar.google.com)

Search for Content from Reliable Guideline/Content Contributors (the Ones PubMed Health used):

  • Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (US) (AHRQ)
  • Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health (CADTH)
  • Centre for Reviews and Dissemination (CRD)
  • Cochrane
  • Department of Veterans Affairs’ Evidence-based Synthesis Program from the Veterans Health Administration R&D (VA ESP)
  • German Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG)
  • Knowledge Centre for the Health Services at The Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH)
  • National Cancer Institute (NCI)
  • National Institute for Health and Care Excellence guidelines program (NICE)
  • National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Health Technology Assessment Programme (NIHR HTA)
  • Oregon Health and Science University’s Drug Effectiveness Review Project (DERP)
  • Swedish Council on Health Technology Assessment (SBU)
  • The TRIP database (TRIP)
  • World Health Organization (WHO)


Image of the author ABOUT Ann Glusker

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Developed resources reported in this program are supported by the National Library of Medicine (NLM), National Institutes of Health (NIH) under cooperative agreement number UG4LM012343 with the University of Washington.

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