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Finding and requesting information

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We can help you with general enquiries, information about library services and resources, finding books, journals, reports, guidelines and statistics.

We can also offer advice on searching for information including tips to improve your search strategies and the best resources for your enquiry.

General enquiry form
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Request a literature search / answer a clinical query
Request an article
Request a book/thesis/report

Searching for information

Find a book

We have more than 5000 books, journals and theses on medicine, nursing and healthcare related subjects. We also have a leisure reading collection.

Details of these and links to NICE guidance, e-books and government publications are on the library catalogue.

If the library does not have the item you require, complete the form below.

Find a journal article

Access to most online journals requires an OpenAthens username and password. Register for OpenAthens or find out more below.

If using an NHS computer you must be logged in to the internet.

Find a particular journal article

  • log in to the A-Z list of journals on the NICE website
  • type the journal name in the search box
  • check the results for dates, availability and print/online status
  • if listed, follow the link to the journal volumes and issues

If the journal you’re looking for is not available you can use the form below to request an article.

To find journal articles on a particular subject, see the information on finding evidence below.

University of Sheffield online journals

Consultants and trainees in a ‘run through’ paediatric post working for Sheffield Children’s NHS Foundation Trust are eligible for an honorary contract with The University of Sheffield and can then access their electronic resources via MUSE. Complete a registration form to request honorary access.

Visit StarPlus for details of the electronic resources available.

Find evidence

Some resources require an NHS OpenAthens account, these are marked with an asterisk.

Register for OpenAthens or find out more below.

If using an NHS computer you must be logged in to the internet.

Search for journal articles by carrying out a literature search

Healthcare Databases Advanced Search (HDAS)

HDAS gives access to the following eight databases:

  • AMED for allied and complementary medicine*
  • BNI for nursing, midwifery and allied health professionals*
  • CINAHL for nursing and allied health*
  • EMBASE for medicine and pharmacology*
  • EMCARE for nursing and allied health professionals*
  • HMIC for healthcare management and administration*
  • Medline for general medical and clinical*
  • PsycInfo for psychiatry, psychology and social sciences*

Book a librarian for more information and training or download a guide to using the Healthcare Databases Advanced Search (HDAS).

Additional resources

Detailed information on these resources can be found in the evidence resources section below.

Evidence resources

Resources that require an NHS OpenAthens account are marked with an asterisk. The resources without an asterisk are freely available.

Healthcare databases

AMED (1985 to present)*
The Allied and Complementary Medicine Database (AMED) is a unique bibliographic database produced by the Health Care Information Service of the British Library. It covers a selection of journals in complementary medicine, palliative care, and several professions allied to medicine.

BNI (1985 to present)*
The British Nursing Index (BNI) is a bibliographic database that indexes articles from the most popular English language nursing journals published primarily in the UK. BNI is a comprehensive index covering all aspects of nursing, midwifery and community healthcare and is updated monthly.

CINAHL (1981 to present)*
The CINAHL database is a comprehensive and authoritative source of information for nurses, allied health professionals, and others interested in health care.

CINAHL with full text*
A rich collection of full text for nursing and allied health journals, providing full text for more than 610 journals indexed in CINAHL. This authoritative file contains full text for many of the most used journals in the CINAHL index, with no embargo. Full text coverage dates back to 1981.

EMBASE (1980 to present)*
EMBASE is a major biomedical and pharmaceutical database indexing over 3,500 international journals in a variety of fields including drug research, pharmacology, toxicology, health policy and management, public health, occupational health and psychiatry.

EMCARE is a bibliographic database drawn from more than 2,700 international source titles and includes close to 2 million records from the nursing, allied health and biomedical literature.

The Health Management Information Consortium database is a compilation of data from two sources, the Department of Health’s Library and Information Services and King’s Fund Information and Library Service.

MEDLINE (1950 to present)*
MEDLINE is a vast source of medical information, covering the whole field of medicine including dentistry, veterinary medicine and medical psychology.

PsycINFO (1806 to present)*
This database provides extensive international coverage of the literature on psychology and allied fields. It covers psychological practice and research as well as the related clinical, social and biological disciplines.

Additional resources

A searchable database of evidence-based answers to real-life clinical questions, with details of courses and teaching material.

BMJ Best Practice*
A point of care tool from BMJ Evidence Centre designed to support clinicians in their decision making from diagnosis to treatment.

British National Formulary (BNF/BNFC)*
Enables users to browse and search full content from BNF, receive notifications when new editions and updates are available, bookmark content and even choose their preferred reading settings. Once downloaded, the app can be run without an internet connection meaning that professionals can access the BNF wherever they are.

Cochrane Databases
Consists of several databases and a search includes all of them. Results are displayed for each database and the most appropriate ones for systematic reviews are: Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, DARE (other reviews) and Health Technology Assessment Database.

Current Controlled Trials
A meta-register that contains records from more than 20 registers in the UK and US, including the NHS Trusts Clinical Trials Register and the UK Clinical Trials Gateway. There are also links to registers not included in the meta-register that need to be searched individually.

NICE Clinical Knowledge Summaries
Provides evidence based information combined with practical recommendations about commonly encountered conditions, aimed at professionals working in primary care.

NICE Guidance
NICE guidelines make evidence-based recommendations on a wide range of topics, from preventing and managing specific conditions, improving health and managing medicines in different settings, to providing social care to adults and children, and planning broader services and interventions to improve the health of communities.

NICE Pathways
NICE Pathways visually represent all of NICE’s recommendations on a topic, and give access to the products that NICE has produced to support implementation of its guidance.

NICE Evidence Search
Provides free open access to a unique index of selected and authoritative health and social care evidence-based information.

Contains abstracts of systematic reviews and randomised controlled trials relevant to occupational therapy. Trials have been critically appraised and rated to assist evaluation of their validity and interpretability. These ratings help you judge the quality and usefulness of trials for informing clinical interventions.

Provides details of randomised controlled trials, systematic reviews and evidence-based clinical practice guidelines in physiotherapy. Most trials have been rated for quality to aid identification of meaningful evidence.

Social Care Online
Provides UK information on government and social policy, mental health care, families, children and young people and social work. No password is required to access Social Care Online.

Toxicology Data Network (TOXNET) is a cluster of databases covering toxicology, hazardous chemicals, environmental health and related areas. No password is required to access TOXNET.

Trip database
Medical search engine with emphasis on evidence based medicine (EBM) and clinical guidelines and queries, including content from Cochrane and Bandolier.

About OpenAthens

An OpenAthens account allows free access to resources (databases of journal articles, the full text of journals and e-books) purchased locally by the Illingworth Library and by the NHS using just one login. This enables you to search for evidence for clinical practice and service development.

All Trust staff are entitled to an OpenAthens account, as are students for the duration of their placement.

How do I register for an OpenAthens account?

Step 1: Get your OpenAthens username

Go to the OpenAthens website.

Enter your email address. Use an NHS email account or NHS computer so the system will know you are an NHS member of staff. If you are a placement student, use your university email address and put your placement location in the address field.

Complete the ‘Your organisation’ and ‘Your details’ fields. Make a note of your OpenAthens username at the end of this process.

Step 2: Create your OpenAthens password

An activation email will be sent to the email address you used for your registration. Check your junk and spam folders if you cannot find it.

Click on the link in the email to create your password. The password must have 8-20 characters, includes numbers, letters, and at least one capital and not include sequences such as abc or 123, or it will be rejected.

After activating your OpenAthens account you can use it to access resources wherever you have internet access. Visit the journals and databases page to start.

What if I move to another trust?

Whenever you move organisation, as long as you stay within the NHS, you can move your account to your new organisation. This will ensure you receive access to all resources you are now entitled to.

To change your organisation:

  • log in to your OpenAthens account
  • choose ‘Change organisation’ from the left-hand menu
  • enter a new email if necessary, or continue with your existing one
  • start typing in your organisation and select from the drop-down list
  • continue to the next page and change any personal details
  • finally continue to the Terms and Conditions and click on ‘Submit’

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November 2021: Our guidance for inpatients at Sheffield Children's has changed. Two named parents/carers may be permitted in inpatients only.See more about our guidance about inpatients

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