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 September 3, 2002 [posted]
 
 
 NLM Online Users' Meeting 2002:
Questions and Answers

 
 

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uestion:
Regarding the SERHOLD-OCLC interface: Will that be automatic or can our SERHOLD records be withheld from OCLC?

Answer:
SERHOLD records will be sent to OCLC only when a library has authorized us to provide the records to OCLC. If your library does not want NLM to send your records to OCLC, we will not. If your library wants NLM to provide your holdings records to OCLC, you will need to update the Batch Authorization Field, located on the Codes tab of your DOCUSER record to indicate "NLM is authorized to send a copy of my library's holdings to OCLC."

Later this year, NLM plans to also offer the "OCLC-to-SERHOLD" batch update function for libraries who prefer to update in OCLC and then have the holdings automatically transferred to SERHOLD.

Question:
Regarding the special list nursing and dental titles where indexing is being discontinued: Will the old titles be removed or will they remain and no new titles be added?

Answer:
We did not take out any records already in MEDLINE and we have told the publishers or editors of these journals, that if they wish us to reconsider inclusion of those journals in MEDLINE we would submit them to NLM's advisory committee that recommends journals for MEDLINE. It doesn't mean that they're out permanently, because some of these deselected titles could find their way back into MEDLINE as Index Medicus selections. No new titles are being added to the Nursing or Dental special lists.

Question:
I understand that sometimes the electronic journal paging doesn't always match the print copy. I am wondering if NLM has run into that and how you are handling it?

Answer:
If this really is true, we'd like to see an example of it. The only example that comes to mind is the "Letters to the editor" section in the journal Science. When several letters appear under a single title in the online version, the same page range appears for all of those letters online, while in the print version it would be possible to use more specific pagination for those individual letters. This probably has no effect on users' ability to find the text they want or to obtain the text via interlibrary loan. We don't know of any other examples where the online pagination differs from the print version.

Question:
I understand that there are no usage statistics available for LinkOut. Due to the resources required to maintain LinkOut, we would appreciate knowing how active our users are in using this feature.

Answer:
Usage data for your library's links to full text and your print holdings are now available using the LinkOut Submission Utility (use "Statistics" link on the sidebar). The data provided represent the number of times that links (icons) established by your library were clicked during a period of time. Should you have any questions or comments, please write to lib-linkout@ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

Question:
Are there any plans to make adjacency searching available in PubMed?

Answer:
Adjacency searching will continue to be available using double quotes around the term or phrase (Example: "first line"). If a term you would like to retrieve cannot be searched using double quotes, please send us a request to add the term to our list of searchable phrases. Note: Most phrases do not require the use of double quotes (Example: safety management). So always try the search first without putting quotes around the term/phrase.

Question:
I noticed that there is a newer print edition of Molecular Biology of the Cell than is available in Bookshelf. What is the policy for keeping Bookshelf books up to date?

Answer:
Whether or not we can include the new edition of Molecular Biology of the Cell on the Bookshelf depends on approval of the publisher. Any new book, (be it a new edition of a book we already have, or some other resource) is subject to a new agreement between the National Center for Biotechnology Information and the publisher. We would like to add the 4th edition of Molecular Biology of the Cell, and the publisher has expressed an interest in including it on the Bookshelf, but as yet has not committed to any definite plan. Our policy is to encourage publishers to update BookShelf content as new editions come out.

Question:
I recently had a call from a librarian about your new Publication Type, Patient Education Handout, and I was curious if there had been any talk with publishers about producing those in full text in some way, perhaps through MedlinePlus?

Answer:
The new publication type, Patient Education Handout, covers patient oriented articles that physicians and other health professionals can give to their patients. It also covers research articles that have been rewritten by the editors to be more understandable by non-specialists. There may be links in PubMed to the publisher's site which may contain the full text, but that is determined by the publisher.

Are we going to have full text of those handouts in MedlinePlus? MedlinePlus creates records for the web-based patient education handouts for some of the things you'd find in PubMed (e.g., American Family Physician on the familydoctor.org site, the JAMA Patient Pages from JAMA, the Patient Summaries from the Annals of Internal Medicine.) It's not a link from PubMed--it's a link to the organization's Web site. MedlinePlus also includes the patient education handout publication type in the packaged PubMed searches, so if there are citations in PubMed, users would see them there.

Question:
I would like to be able to alter a search or add/delete terms to a search in the PubMed MeSH browser after I have already completed a search. I don't want to go to a new screen to enter terms.

Answer:
Use the back button on your Web browser to return to the MeSH Browser screen that you want to modify, make your changes and click on PubMed Search to run the new search.

Question:
Is there any chance of adding something to the brief display page indicating that full text is available?

Answer:
PubMed is designed to return the initial results of a search as quickly as possible. A short display format (Summary) that does not include icons contributes to this goal. While we realize that some users are eager to know if the full text is available, the ability to maintain a fast response for all users takes priority over providing additional information.

Question:
Is NLM planning to increase the amount of genetic information in MedlinePlus?

Answer:
We do look for genetics information; the difficulty is finding it at the right level. But if you have specific suggestions, please forward them; we're happy to hear from you.

Question:
Has NLM received any feedback on how libraries are handling retracted articles in the database? What we are doing is locating these articles and putting a stamp on the article, on the text itself.

Answer:
We have heard several librarians say that they do go into the copy and make notes. We would be interested in feedback on what libraries are doing so that we could share it with a wider audience.

Question:
I did a PubMed/MedlinePlus training session and one of the authors in the audience was looking for his publication which was wrong in the database. How do you make changes to PubMed? I looked at the FAQs and could not find information about how you make changes and I would like to suggest that some notice be made so that if people do need to make changes that it is easily found how to do that.

Answer:
There is a PubMed FAQ item for this topic, "My name is misspelled on a citation. Can this be corrected?"

Question:
Those of us working with the public health departments would be very interested in seeing the public health MeSH headings improved. Has there been any movement on that this year?

Answer:
NLM has undertaken a joint project with the Midcontinental Regional Medical Library. Staff at the University of Utah, Spencer S. Eccles Library have worked closely with health professionals at the Utah Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) staff based in Utah to begin a process of needs assessment regarding enhanced vocabulary in the area of public health.

In November 2001, staff from the MeSH Section at NLM made a visit to the Midcontinental RML in Utah. Training in MeSH philosophy and maintenance was provided during the three days onsite. Meetings were also held with a resource group of local public health practitioners.

Follow-up has been continuing. A masters of public health student is working with RML staff to devise and implement a systematic approach to vocabulary enhancements with the goal of improved response to the needs of public health practitioners and students, particularly those working in community and academic settings. Consultations are also ongoing with the Utah (State) Department of Health and regionally-based CDC staff in Utah as well as health professionals in the adjoining states.

Initial efforts have resulted in the addition of 10 new Main Headings for 2003. It is expected that further changes will be forthcoming as the project continues.

The project began as an enhancement project undertaken by the Midcontinental RML. Its origins include the efforts of members of the Partners in Information Access for Public Health Professionals and the Association of Schools of Public Health. Kathleen McCloskey, Public Health Liaison, NN/LM Midcontinental Region and JacqueLynne Schulman, Senior Technical Information Specialist, MeSH Section, NLM have been coordinating this joint effort and both welcome comments.

Question:
When using Ovid, they had the HealthSTAR database and it looked like it was up to date and I was thinking that HealthSTAR no longer existed and it would be nice if it did exist in PubMed. What's the truth? Did I just miss it and it's not current?

Answer:

The discrete database known as HealthSTAR no longer exists at NLM. As outlined in the article, Organization of National Library of Medicine Bibliographic Databases in the May-June 2000 NLM Technical Bulletin, NLM did reorganize its bibliographic data into three groups as part of its widespread reinvention project. The HealthSTAR database was dismantled as were NLM's other specialized databases (AIDSLINE, BIOETHICSLINE, HISTLINE, POPLINE, and TOXLINE). HealthSTAR's unique journal citation records moved into MEDLINE in PubMed in May 1999; the unique monograph records including book chapters moved into LocatorPlus in December 1999, and meeting abstract records moved to the NLM Gateway in February 2001. All three systems may be searched at one time using the NLM Gateway. (About 9400 old technical report records provided by National Health Planning Information Center (NHPIC) were not converted.) NLM continues to add new records in the area of health planning and administration and, of course, maintains records as necessary. Use of the journal/citation subset value 'jsubseth' in PubMed limits retrieval to non-Index Medicus health administration journals. At the time the journal citation records were loaded into PubMed, only 5% were unique to HealthSTAR.

Licensees of the former HealthSTAR database were informed that they could continue to provide access to the then-current version of the discrete database no later than Spring 2001 when NLM ceased access to HealthSTAR via Internet Grateful Med. Licensees interested in creating their own database modeled after the former HealthSTAR database (or any former NLM specialty database) were told they must name their products so that they are differentiated from the former NLM databases. In addition, NLM provided licensees with the strategy it used to extract new records from MEDLINE for inclusion in HealthSTAR. NLM encouraged licensees to modify and update the strategy as they thought best for their individual products because in 2001 there was no longer a specific product at NLM that the licensee must mirror.

OVID staff have confirmed that they currently offer a database named HealthSTAR that includes all records from the former HealthSTAR database as last distributed in NLM's legacy format during 2000. During 2001 and 2002 OVID has been updating this database with new journal citation records derived from the MEDLINE database it receives from NLM (using the strategy NLM distributed in 2000). OVID's base file still contains the 2000 MeSH Headings; the file has not undergone any maintenance. New non-journal citation records (i.e., monographs and meeting abstract records) have not been added to its database. OVID has been reminded of the above information and has informed NLM that they will reinvent their HealthSTAR database for 2003 at which time it will take on a new name. OVID explained that it wanted to continue providing its customers with access to the non-journal citation records that did not migrate to MEDLINE. [Note: NLM does lease monograph records contained in LocatorPlus]. NLM suggests OVID users contact OVID with specific questions about the content/currency of its present HealthSTAR database.

Question:
I would love, if in PubMed under the Limits function, you would add subsets for the health administration journals and consumer health journals. When I work with health administrators it's much too difficult for them to put jsubseth in their search in the PubMed box and also with consumers it's beyond them to put jsubsetk in the search box.

Answer:
A concern we have is that there are citations to articles in the database that would be of interest to users, but are not published in the journals assigned to these lists. It can be misleading to limit to a journal list that has only 20 titles like the consumer one when many more articles are available from other journals. A better approach might be to turn these into subject subsets incorporating MeSH and text words in addition to journal title abbreviations. To date we have not had the resources to develop a consumer health subject subset.

However, the National Information Center on Health Services Research and Health Care Technology (NICHSR) at NLM is developing a capability to have health services research-related strategies available from the NICHSR Web site for use with PubMed. Work on this is expected to be completed later this year.

NICHSR is also considering the possibility of developing a subject subset based on "core" journals in health services research, health policy, and public health. Health management could be included in this subset depending on the level of interest.



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NLM Online Users' Meeting 2002: Questions and Answers. NLM Tech Bull. 2002 Jul-Aug;(327):e7b.

 


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