This is the first guide to the enormous field of health literature designed to show library patrons as well as librarians where to find the information needed to address health concerns. Organized in a question and answer format, this invaluable reference lists resources, publications, on-line services, CD-ROM databases, government agencies, and other sources. Includes helpful appendices with directories.
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This timely compilation of printed medical reference works (197), computerized databases (30), and health organizations (more than 400) uses the same question-and-answer format as Freed's Business Information Desk Reference [RBB Je 15 91]. Graves, his coauthor, is a medical librarian.
The 10 chapters and 3 appendixes tend to obscure the basic organization of the book, which first suggests printed tools that will answer specific questions and follows with an annotated bibliography of the tools. This arrangement is repeated for databases, health organizations, and Department of Health and Human Services information centers. The q & a chapters are arranged by broad topics, such as Childhood Health and Mental Health, which are further subdivided. For example, in the chapter on printed sources, the category Surgery subdivides into Cosmetic Surgery, Deciding on Surgery, and Surgical Procedures. Common health questions are listed under each subcategory. The cosmetic-surgery section refers readers to four printed reference tools to answer these questions. The subject organization varies significantly from one chapter to the next so that the strategy for finding relevant information in printed tools may not work for the other chapters. In the chapter on organizations, the most relevant information on cosmetic surgery is found under the category, Information about Health Procedures, where the subcategories Information about Liposuction and Specific Plastic Surgery Procedures are located. The final chapter lists state sources of health information with addresses and telephone number arranged by subject and subdivided by state. Three directories of publishers, vendors, and nongovernmental health organizations complete the volume.
This work contains an excellent index by title and subject. Early use of the subject index should improve patron ability to locate relevant resources quickly. The reference works annotated in The Patient's Desk Reference are common to most academic and large consumer-health reference collections. Bibliographic information is accurate and up to date through 1992.
Because of its convoluted organization, The Patient's Desk Reference seems most useful for librarians helping consumers answer health questions. Public libraries can also use it as a collection-development tool. This book is a valuable addition for reference collections serving public and patient health-information needs.
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Book Description Simon & Schuster, 1994. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0028971531