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 August 29, 2001 [posted]
 
 
 NLM Online Users' Meetings 2001:
MEDLARS Questions and Answers

 
 

Drop cap graphic of the letter Q
uestion:
What plans do you have to make subsets again for the health management literature?

Answer:
We recognize that there is interest in being able to retrieve in a way that is similar to that of the old special lists (i.e., BIOETHICS, POPLINE and HealthSTAR). We will have a growing number of subject subsets in PubMed available from the Subset pull-down menu. We're discussing a capability to have health management related strategies available from the National Information Center on Health Services Research and Health Care Technology (NICHSR) Web site to use against PubMed. We're also discussing a capability using the Gateway that will enable you to accumulate various formats of material related to a particular subject slant into one retrieval.

Question:
Do you have any plans to index the AIDS meeting abstracts that are not currently indexed? And do you plan to index future AIDS meeting abstracts?

Answer:
NLM has no plans to index existing or future meeting abstracts in the traditional, applied-by-human way. Feedback from our users has indicated the top priority for meeting abstract data is speedy availability to title and abstract information with the indexing not as vital for this publication type. So, we have adopted this as our philosophy. However, we are looking at computerized suggestions for indexing-like enhancement to those meeting abstracts and so far the results are rather promising.

Question:
Are there any plans to add the meeting abstracts from other meetings such as American Society for Microbiology?

Answer:
Yes, NLM expects to convene a working group in the Fall to examine the possibility of adding additional abstracts from other meetings.

Question:
Are there any journals from AIDSLINE that are not going to be added to PubMed?

Answer:
All journal and newsletter articles that were previously found in AIDSLINE are going to be added to PubMed. [Editor's Note: This happened on May 22, 2001.]

Question:
Are there any journals that will continue to be selectively indexed or will everything in PubMed be fully indexed?

Answer:
There are about 50-60 journals out of the approximately 4,500 indexed that are still selectively indexed. These journals are basic science journals such as Science and Scientific American. We also selectively index some general chemistry journals. As we proceed with enhancing PubMed with the journal citation data from the former specialty databases, a large number of journals new to MEDLINE will continue to be selectively indexed.

Publishers of selectively indexed titles, Science, for example, may send us citation data electronically. They send citations for all articles of a given issue whether they are in scope for MEDLINE or not. All the records end up in PubMed where they are searchable and retrievable, but not all are indexed for MEDLINE. Keep in mind that a search that specifies a MeSH Heading would not retrieve citations that are not indexed.

Question:
Do you have any plans to add author addresses for all the authors of a journal article?

Answer:
No, we have no plans to do that.

Question:
Do you have any plans to add a note feature to the Gateway e-mail function so that someone would know from whom the e-mail is coming?

Answer:
Thank you for the comment. We will take that under consideration. If you have comments, you can send them to us using the link at the bottom of the Gateway page. You may also write to us using the NLM customer service address, custserv@nlm.nih.gov. [Editor's Note: This feature will be included in the next version of the NLM Gateway which will be released in early September, 2001. Users will be able to append a message to results sent via e-mail.]

Question:
Will you be updating the clinical queries feature of PubMed?

Answer:
The Clinical Queries feature of PubMed utilizes strategies developed by R. Brian Haynes, et al. at McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada to identify sound clinical studies for general medicine. McMaster staff are currently reviewing this project to see how the strategies can be improved. We look forward to incorporating the results of their review into an improved version of PubMed's Clinical Queries.

Question:
Do you have any plans to add a title word feature to single citation matcher?

Answer:
This feature was added in May. For more information see the article, Title Word Search Added to Single Citation Matcher, in the May-June 2001 issue of the NLM Technical Bulletin.

Question:
How can I find out when an enhancement has been made to PubMed or a new NLM Technical Bulletin article is available?

Answer:
NLM has the New Files Mailing List, a weekly e-mail alert service service that provides weekly announcements of new and updated files on NLM's Web site. Details on how to subscribe are available at http://www.nlm.nih.gov/news/nlmfiles-email.html. [Editor's Note: See Technical Notes. NLM Tech Bull. 2001 Jul-Aug;(321):e2. for details on the new updated NLM electronic mailing list called NLM Announces.]

Question:
Are there any plans to add a date, language or sort limit to the Related Articles feature of PubMed?

Answer:
These limits would not be added directly to the Related Articles feature; however, you can apply limits to Related Articles retrieval. Use the PubMed History page to find the search statement number for the "related" retrieval and then combine that search statement number with other limits. For example, you could combine your related articles results with an English language limit. There are examples of this in the PubMed Help. You can sort "related" citations by adding all or selected citations to the Clipboard where you can sort by author, journal or publication date. Keep in mind that Related Article citations are displayed in a ranked order (most to least relevant) and combining those results with other terms or limits, or sorting them will remove the ranking.

Question:
Why does the "Find MeSH/Meta Terms" in Internet Grateful Med (IGM) work differently from the MeSH browser in PubMed? Are there any plans to make the MeSH browser in PubMed work more like the IGM "Find MeSH/Meta Terms"?

Answer:
We're in the process of reviewing what needs to be improved in the PubMed MeSH browser and the journal browser. If you have comments, you can send them to us using the link at the bottom of any page in PubMed. You may also write to us using the NLM customer service address, custserv@nlm.nih.gov.

Question:
What is the status of the clinical alert program?

Answer:
Clinical alerts began at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) about ten years ago. Two years ago the process was revised to make it easier for the various institutes issuing an alert or advisory to get that information to us so that we could then put it on our Web site and make it readily available. Over time the institutes have become more inclined to put these up on their own Web sites. We know that many of you have found this service useful and we are reviewing the process at this time. [Editor's Note: NLM is continuing the Clinical Alert service. Clinical Alerts and Advisories can be found on the NLM Web site at: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/databases/alerts/clinical_alerts.html.]

Question:
Will NLM continue the availability of subsets for the POPLINE data that is kept?

Answer:
Yes, NLM expects to develop a population and family planning information PubMed subset in the future that will retrieve the POPLINE data.

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NLM Online Users' Meetings 2001: MEDLARS Questions and Answers. NLM Tech Bull. 2001 Jul-Aug;(321):e9b.

 

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