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Searching for information on outcomes: do you need to be comprehensive?
  1. A J Brettle,
  2. A F Long,
  3. M J Grant,
  4. J Greenhalgh
  1. Health Care Practice Research and Development Unit, University of Salford, UK. A.Brettle@health-faculty.salford.ac.uk

    Abstract

    The concepts of evidence-based practice and clinical effectiveness are reliant on up to date, accurate, high quality, and relevant information. Although this information can be obtained from a range of sources, computerised databases such as MEDLINE offer a fast, effective means of bringing up to date information to clinicians, as well as health service and information professionals. Common problems when searching for information from databases include missing important relevant papers or retrieving too much information. Effective search strategies are therefore necessary to retrieve a manageable amount of relevant information. This paper presents a range of strategies which can be used to locate information on MEDLINE efficiently and effectively.

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