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About the National Information Center on Health Services Research and Health Care Technology (NICHSR)

The 1993 NIH Revitalization Act created a National Information Center on Health Services Research and Health Care Technology (NICHSR) at the National Library of Medicine to improve "..the collection, storage, analysis, retrieval, and dissemination of information on health services research, clinical practice guidelines, and on health care technology, including the assessment of such technology."

The Center works closely with the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), formerly the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (AHCPR), to improve the dissemination of the results of health services research, with special emphasis on the growing body of evidence reports and technology assessments which provide organizations with comprehensive, science-based information on common, costly medical conditions and new health care technologies.

The overall goals of the NICHSR are: to make the results of health services research, including practice guidelines and technology assessments, readily available to health practitioners, health care administrators, health policy makers, payers, and the information professionals who serve these groups; to improve access to data and information needed by the creators of health services research; and to contribute to the information infrastructure needed to foster patient record systems that can produce useful health services research data as a by-product of providing health care.

Products and Services

NICHSR coordinates the development of information products and services related to health services research.

NLM Digitial Collections in National and Internation Policy Issues - a growing collection of digitally born grey-literature resources, preserved with the cooperation of their creating agencies, to ensure permanent access to researchers in public health and health services/systems research.

HSTAT (Health Services/Technology Assessment Text), (//, is a free, Web-based resource of full-text documents that provide health information and support health care decision making. HSTAT's audience includes health care providers, health service researchers, policy makers, payers, consumers and the information professionals who serve these groups. It includes Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) evidence reports, guideline documents, and technology assessments, NIH Consensus Development Conference Statements and Technology Assessment Workshop Reports, the U.S. Task Force on Preventive Services' Guide to Clinical Preventive Services, HIV/AIDS Treatment Information Service (ATIS) approved guidelines, and Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) treatment improvement protocols.

In addition to its online databases, NICHSR and other NLM staff develop guides, fact sheets, bibliographies, and other products targeted to health services researchers. To find many of these go to the Health Services Research and Public Health Information Programs Web page at //

Outreach and Training

NICHSR collaborates with other NLM components and with members of the Network of the National Library of Medicine® (NNLM) to exhibit NLM products and services and to present specially focused training classes at national meetings of HSR-related organizations. NICHSR also provides training programs for medical librarians to improve their ability to respond to health services research questions and to support the conduct of such research, and training activities directed toward producers and users of health services research.

Research and Development

NICHSR supports a number of intramural and extramural research and development projects designed to improve access to useful health services research data. Current efforts include: expansion of the Unified Medical Language System® (UMLS®) Metathesaurus® to improve its utility in creating and retrieving computer-based patient records; and funding of extramural research and evaluation involving the creation and use of computer-based patient records.

Contact Information:
National Information Center on Health Services
Research and Health Care Technology (NICHSR)
National Library of Medicine
8600 Rockville Pike
Bethesda, MD 20894
Contact Us: NLM Customer Service Web Site: //


Last Reviewed: October 21, 2021