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MedlinePlus Update

MedlinePlus continues to improve! Recent enhancements to the site make it easier to search, more useful and more appealing to users. This article will cover the following:

  • Search Improvements
  • Interactive Tutorials Makeover
  • News articles from Reuters Now Available for 90 Days
  • New Bilingual Magazine: NIH MedlinePlus Salud
  • Culturally Relevant Health Information from the Refugee Health Information Network (RHIN)

Search Improvements

Last year, MedlinePlus added a new search engine which vastly improved the functionality of the site. When a user performs a key word search, the results page includes four basic parts: a summary, links to individual search results, and two groups of results – Collections and Clusters.

The Collections section breaks the results into subsets from the major areas within MedlinePlus, such as results found in Drugs and Supplements or the News category. Results from the MedlinePlus Magazine, Other Resources and the Multiple Languages sections are the newest additions to the Collections subsets. Clusters are groupings of items with similar concepts found within the text. Both of these tools help users narrow their searches quickly!

MedlinePlus Website

Interactive Tutorials Receive a Makeover

If you haven’t opened an Interactive Tutorial lately, you are in for a pleasant surprise! The content recently received a new color scheme, better navigation aids and helpful instructions for getting started.

The first page that loads provides a description with images for each option, making it easier for users to understand the kind of information they will see.

MedlinePlus Slide

The slide shows now have an updated color scheme which is more pleasing to the eye. Animated graphics help users adjust the volume and navigate through the content.

MedlinePlus Graphic

Remember, these are available in Spanish also! Just click on the español button to toggle over to the complete list.

MedlinePlus Tutorial

News articles from Reuters Now Available for 90 Days

Now users can access news articles from Reuters for 90 days! Previously, users had access to HealthDay articles for 90 days, but only 30 days for items from Reuters. A new licensing agreement now provides items from both sources for 90 days, which is good news indeed!

New Bilingual Magazine: NIH MedlinePlus Salud

We are happy to announce the new NIH MedlinePlus Salud Magazine, a bilingual Spanish and English magazine. Salud will be published twice a year. The magazine has Spanish content on one side of the page and English on the other, so it can be enjoyed by speakers of both languages. It will contain unique content rather than duplicating the MedlinePlus Magazine. The magazine can be viewed at Free subscriptions will be available soon.

From the press release:

There’s a new magazine for people who want health information in Spanish. The National Institutes of Health, the National Library of Medicine, and the Friends of the National Library of Medicine recently launched NIH MedlinePlus Salud. The magazine is produced in partnership with the National Alliance for Hispanic Health.

The new publication, written in both English and Spanish, complements NIH MedlinePlus magazine which premiered in 2006. Salud (the Spanish word for health) was created to bring quality health information to even more people, and to address the specific health needs of the growing Hispanic population. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the Hispanic population is the fastest growing minority group in the country. Hispanics made up 15% of the population in 2007, and the Census Bureau projects they will make up 30% of the population by 2050.

NIH MedlinePlus Salud is the National Institutes of Health’s first general interest consumer magazine in Spanish. The magazine’s content comes from the National Institutes of Health and includes the latest research and useful health tips.

The pilot issue of NIH MedlinePlus Salud, introduced in January 2009, features Cuban American journalist Cristina Saralegui, who is well known for her Univision talk show, The Cristina Show, as well as her work on behalf of health and wellness causes. The 30-page pilot issue is being distributed nationwide through doctors’ offices, health and community centers, clinics and hospitals, and medical libraries.

MedlinePlus Salud Magazine

Culturally Relevant Health Information from the Refugee Health Information Network (RHIN)

MedlinePlus recently formed a partnership with RHIN to provide a link to multilingual health information for refugees and their health providers. From the home page, click on the Multiple Languages link. The Health Information in Multiple Languages page loads, and you will see a listing of all the languages currently represented in MedlinePlus. In addition, the RHIN logo is prominently displayed. Clicking on the logo will take users to directly to the site, where they can find culturally relevant multilingual health information.

MedlinePlus RHIN

More about the Refugee Health Information Network:

RHIN® is a national collaborative partnership managed by refugee health professionals, whose objective is to provide quality multilingual, health information resources for those providing care to resettled refugees and asylees.

RHIN places its greatest emphasis on identifying, collecting, and making available quality materials that have been produced in refugee languages. Sources of these materials include Federal, state, and local public health agencies; national organizations; health care agencies; community-based organizations; academic institutions; and international organizations.

RHIN also strives to identify news and events, as well as other information resources useful to health providers serving refugees.

Please contact Kelli Ham if you have questions or comments about MedlinePlus or other consumer health resources.

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