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Accessing public health information: a preliminary comparison of CABI'sglobal healthdatabase andmedline

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Abstract 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 asmedlineoften 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 theglobal healthdatabase, by comparing it to themedlinedatabase. 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 theglobal healthdatabase holds a high proportion of unique records in comparison tomedline. The largest overlap of duplicates from theglobal healthdatabase perspective came from the coccidiomycosis results set which contained 70.5% of references retrieved from both databases. Analyzing the results from amedlineperspective, the subject with the largest overlap was dengue, with a 43% overlap. Conclusion: 

The results of this study show that theglobal healthdatabase is complimentary tomedlinein the subject areas of public health and global health.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Kostoris Library, Christie Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester M20 4BX, UK and 2: Kostoris Library, Paterson Institute for Cancer Research, Manchester M20 4BX, UK

Publication date: March 1, 2009

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