When the National Library of Medicine announced that its database would be provided free on the web through the web site PUBMED, Vice President Al Gore was on hand to encourage Americans to visit "their neighbourhood medical library", "the home page that makes house calls." Major U.S. television news programs, the Wall Street Journal, and Ann Landers devoted copy to the announcement. If not quite achieving cult status, it was clear that 's rich and unique content would now reach consumers directly.
Librarians, who prior to 1996 had been the principle mediators between and its users, were involved with the testing of the PubMed user interface. They continue to have reservations about its ...

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Institutes of Health. Its coverage includes the U.S. and 70 foreign countries, with a total of 8.6 million records dating back to 1966. Very few of the journals have any consumer focus, nor are they even intended to be read or understood by consumers.

MEDLINE is but one of 40 databases in the MEDLARS family of databases, which includes AIDSLINE, TOXLINE, and HEALTHSTAR. There is overlap among many of the MEDLARS databases, but some unique coverage in each as well.

The Journey from Fee to Free

How did we get to free MEDLINE on the Internet? Until the mid-70's the National Library of Medicine provided access to both the MEDLINE database and its modes of access. There were two: the printed INDEX MEDICUS, and a complex computer search interface. This search interface permitted very precise searching of medical topics. It was intended for use by medical librarians who received in-depth training in searching methodologies, and it was expected that they would use this ...

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on actual success rates of MEDLINE use, showed user satisfaction with search results at 86%, and well over half of the users surveyed were Grateful Med end-users. The Grateful Med software was modified for the web and introduced on the NLM web site in April 1996. Partly experimental, it was hoped that the emerging HTML standard could solve the pesky problem of having to create variant versions of Grateful Med for all computing platforms. It was also hoped that now that there was no requirement to buy software, the web would make Grateful Med more accessible to searchers. It did not become free until June 1997. And limitations of HTML design features at the time made it appear ...

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MEDLINE. (2004, April 28). Retrieved March 22, 2018, from
"MEDLINE.", 28 Apr. 2004. Web. 22 Mar. 2018. <>
"MEDLINE." April 28, 2004. Accessed March 22, 2018.
"MEDLINE." April 28, 2004. Accessed March 22, 2018.
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Added: 4/28/2004 04:43:19 PM
Category: Miscellaneous
Type: Free Paper
Words: 2453
Pages: 9

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