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NLM/HMD Launches IndexCat User Survey

The History of Medicine Division (HMD) of the National Library of Medicine (NLM) is planning a major update of its IndexCat database, the online version of the Index Catalogue of the Library of the Surgeon-General’s Office. You are invited to take part in a brief survey so NLM/HMD can better understand your current use of IndexCat and what new features you would wish this resource to offer in the future. The survey can be found at

If you are not familiar with IndexCat, please take a moment to explore it. IndexCat contains over 4.5 million references to over 3.7 million bibliographic items, dating from over five centuries, and covering subjects of the basic sciences, scientific research, civilian and military medicine, public health, and hospital administration. A wide range of materials can be discovered through IndexCat, including books, journal articles, dissertations, pamphlets, reports, newspaper clippings, case studies, obituary notices, letters, and portraits, as well as rare books and manuscripts. Recently, two new collections, involving medieval scientific English and Latin texts, were made available through IndexCat. Opening a new frontier in historical research, these additional collections encompass over 42,000 records of incipits, or the beginning words of a medieval manuscript or early printed book. IndexCat users can search incipit data by manuscript, library, author/translator, title, subject, date and other information.

The IndexCat user survey has been approved by the National Library of Medicine’s Survey Review process and responses will be anonymous. This survey will remain open until October 15, 2012.

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