Knowledge Navigator

Start your search for knowledge! The Navigator will help you find your way through the different types of information available, and the different means of locating it.

For some resources, you’ll need an NHS OpenAthens account for access.

What sort of information are you looking for:

 

Clinical decision support?

Clinical decision support or point of care tools are resources that can be used to get quick answers for patient care, so are easy to use and contain filtered information. These tools include details of the evidence used, with citations back to the original research studies, systematic reviews, or guidelines.

UpToDate

UpToDate contains over 11,000 articles, providing evidence-graded treatment recommendations as well as diagnostic and other information for common as well as rare conditions. It also offers a drug interactions checker, patient information leaflets and clinical calculators. Access is only available to Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH) staff.

  • Access UpToDate (if accessing off-site, a personal account created onsite, or an NHS OpenAthens account is required)

BMJ Best Practice

BMJ Best Practice provides evidence-graded treatment recommendations as well as diagnostic and other information for many conditions. It also offers a prescribing information and clinical calculators.

Royal Marsden Manual of Clinical Nursing Procedures

The Royal Marsden Manual provides clinical procedure guidelines for over 350 nursing procedures, along with evidence-graded references.

Books?

RSH-EBP-87

Visit the Book tab on Omnisearch and type in the title or some keywords

When searching for books using OmniSearch, you can limit your results to print books or e-books only by using the refine search options for format within our discovery system. Click on a book title for more details.

If the print book is on loan, at another library, or if you’d like it sent to your workplace, you can use the ‘Reserve item’ facility to request a copy. Otherwise, take a note of the shelfmark (e.g. WY 100 BAL) or special location (e.g. Leadership Zone), and find the book on the shelves.

If the book is an e-book, you’ll normally be able to access it immediately with an NHS OpenAthens account. For more information about accessing or downloading e-books visit the E-books page.

If the book is not held locally, you can order a copy from elsewhere.

There is no charge for this service.

If you’re a student, you could also check the Staffordshire University or Keele University resource discovery systems.

Clinical Pathways?

These are some good places to look for clinical pathways (also called care pathways or care maps).

NICE Pathways

NICE Pathways provide a graphical view of a patient pathway, with links to relevant NICE guidance including quality standards, technology appraisals, clinical, public health and social care guidelines and NICE implementation tools.

Google

A lot of clinical pathways are published by individual NHS organisations, and can be found in Google by using relevant terms for clinical pathways combined with your subject and limited to NHS websites.

For example, to find clinical pathways for metformin in diabetes care, you could use the following search strategy:

(“care pathway*” OR “clinical pathway*” OR “care protocol*” OR “critical pathway*” OR “care map”)  site:nhs.uk metformin diabet*

Follow the link below to run a search for clinical pathways in the NHS, and after opening Google, add your search terms to the end of the search box and re-run the search.

Observational Studies?

Observational studies can include cohort studies and case control studies. Where there are no RCTs available (perhaps because it is not appropriate to conduct one) they may be the best evidence available. Observational studies can help answer questions on prognosis, etiology and harms.

These are some good places to look for published observational studies. Once you’ve found one, you could use the CASP Cohort Study Checklist or CASP Case Control Checklist to critically appraise it if it is one of these two types of study.

Medline

Medline is a very comprehensive database, with coverage of all areas of medicine, including nursing, allied health, public health and mental health. It contains over 23 million references, from over 5,600 scholarly journals.

Observational studies can be retrieved by performing a subject search as normal, and then performing the following search (paste it into the search box) which is then combined with your subject search:

COMPARATIVE STUDIES/ OR EPIDEMIOLOGICAL STUDIES/ OR TIME FACTORS/ OR (chang*).ti,ab OR (evaluat*).ti,ab OR (reviewed).ti,ab OR (prospective*).ti,ab OR (retrospective*).ti,ab OR (baseline).ti,ab OR (cohort).ti,ab OR (“case series”).ti,ab OR (consecutive*).ti,ab OR (compare*).ti,ab OR (compara*).ti,ab

This is a very ‘sensitive’ search, so will pick up a lot of references to studies that are not observational, but it should ensure you get all the observational studies available. More information on this filter is available in this article.

EMBASE

Excepta Medica (EMBASE) covers all aspects of medicine, nursing, allied health, health policy, and public health. It is particularly strong on pharmaceutical information, and has an emphasis on European literature.

Observational studies can be retrieved by performing a subject search as normal, and then performing the following search (paste it into the search box) which is then combined with your subject search:

CONTROLLED STUDY/ OR TREATMENT OUTCOME/ OR MAJOR CLINICAL STUDY/ OR (chang*).ti,ab OR (evaluat*).ti,ab OR (reviewed).ti,ab OR (compare*).ti,ab OR (compara*).ti,ab

This is a very ‘sensitive’ search, so will pick up a lot of references to studies that are not observational, but it should ensure you get all the observational studies available. More information on this filter is available in this article.

Download our guide to Searching Healthcare Databases via HDAS

Qualitative Research?

Qualitative research can help to understand the human experience of health and illness, and is an important part of evidence-based healthcare. Qualitative research can use various methods, such as grounded theory, phenomenology, or focus groups.

These are some good places to look for articles that use qualitative research methodologies. Once you’ve found one, you could use the CASP Qualitative Research Checklist to critically appraise it.

CINAHL
 CINAHL (Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature) covers all aspects of nursing, midwifery and allied health subjects, and health education.

If you’re searching CINAHL using the NHS Healthcare Databases, this is an example strategy that can be copied and pasted into the search box:

exp ATTITUDE/ OR exp INTERVIEWS/ OR exp “QUALITATIVE STUDIES”/

Once the search is complete, carry out a search for your topic of interest, and then combine the searches together.

Download our guide to Searching Healthcare Databases via HDAS

If you’re searching CINAHL via Staffordshire or Keele Universities, an example strategy to use is:

(MH “Attitude+”) OR (MH “Interviews+”) OR (MH “Qualitative Studies+”)

Copy and paste the strategy into the search box and run the search. Once the search is complete, carry out a search for your topic of interest, and then combine the searches together (you’ll need to view the search history to combine searches).

These searches are fairly ‘sensitive’ and will pick up most articles that are qualitative research, but will include some that are not. However, they will vastly reduce the number of non-qualitative research articles in your results and make it easier to find qualitative research.

Medline
Medline is a very comprehensive database, with coverage of all areas of medicine, including nursing, allied health, public health and mental health. It contains over 23 million references, from over 5,600 scholarly journals.

If you’re searching Medline using the NHS Healthcare Databases, this is an example strategy that can be copied and pasted into the search box:

exp “QUALITATIVE RESEARCH”/ OR qualitative.ti,ab OR interview*.ti,ab OR experience*.ti,ab

Once the search is complete, carry out a search for your topic of interest, and then combine the searches together.

Download our guide to Searching Healthcare Databases via HDAS

If you’re searching Medline via Staffordshire or Keele Universities, an example strategy to use is:

(MH “Qualitative Research+”) OR (MP “Qualitative”) OR (MP “Interview*”) OR (MP “Experience*”)

Copy and paste the strategy into the search box and run the search. Once the search is complete, carry out a search for your topic of interest, and then combine the searches together (you’ll need to view the search history to combine searches).

These searches are fairly ‘sensitive’ and will pick up most articles that are qualitative research, but will include some that are not. However, they will vastly reduce the number of non-qualitative research articles in your results and make it easier to find qualitative research.

Case Reports?

These are some good places to look for case reports

Medline

Medline is a very comprehensive database, with coverage of all areas of medicine, including nursing, allied health, public health and mental health. It contains over 23 million references, from over 5,600 scholarly journals.

Case reports can be found by filtering your search to Article Type > Document Type > Case Reports

Download our guide to Searching Healthcare Databases via HDAS

EMBASE

Excepta Medica (EMBASE) covers all aspects of medicine, nursing, allied health, health policy, and public health. It is particularly strong on pharmaceutical information, and has an emphasis on European literature.

Case reports can be found by using the thesaurus term ‘case reports’ and combining this with your search

Download our guide to Searching Healthcare Databases via HDAS

BMJ Case Reports

BMJ Case Reports contains over 11,000 articles. It is indexed in Medline, but is worth searching separately. Access to the full-text of case reports is only available to Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust staff, but you can request copies of items from us.

Publishing a case report in BMJ Case Reports

Staff of Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust can submit case reports to BMJ Case Reports using out Fellowship number which is 915046

Grey literature?

Grey literature generally means material that is either unpublished or has been published in non-commercial form, and can include government reports, conference proceedings, theses and dissertations, and research reports. Resources for locating Dissertations and Theses and Preprints are available separately.

These are some good places to look for grey literature. Once you’ve found some literature, you could use the AACODS Checklist to critically appraise it (unless there is a more appropriate CASP checklist).

HMIC (Health Management Information Consortium)

HMIC is good source for UK health related grey literature.

HMIC includes information from the Department of Health’s Library and Information Service, and the King’s Fun Information and Library Service. As well as official publications and grey literature, HMIC also indexes journal articles.

Download our guide to Searching Healthcare Databases via HDAS

EMBASE (for conference abstracts)

Excepta Medica (EMBASE) covers all aspects of medicine, nursing, allied health, health policy, and public health. It is particularly strong on pharmaceutical information, and has an emphasis on European literature. As of August 2019, 2.5 million conference abstracts from about 7,000 conferences are indexed in EMBASE.

Many conference abstracts are never published as full research articles, and those that are eventually published tend to be the ones with more positive results.

Conference abstracts can be found by doing a normal search in EMBASE, but it is possible to narrow your search to conference abstracts only by applying limits to your search for Article Type > Document Type > Conference abstract

Download our guide to Searching Healthcare Databases via HDAS

OAIster Database

OAIster contains more than 30 million records of open access grey literature resources.

Open Grey (System for Information on Grey Literature in Europe)

Open Grey covers a variety of European grey literature including conference papers, research reports and dissertations.

 

More guidance is available in The Literature Search Process: Guidance for NHS Researchers. This document has been developed by health librarians in Thames Valley, Wessex and South NHS regions to support healthcare researchers in carrying out effective literature searches according to an agreed set of recommendations.