Health and Wellness Res. Centre (Gale)

When it comes to our health, mis-information can be... well... sickening! While by no means are library staff expected to provide medical advice, directing customers to current, authoritative health-related information is something we can do*.

Gale's Health and Wellness Resource Centre is the perfect medical e-Resource for anyone and everyone, from the merely curious to the medically minded. Subscribed to through Knowledge Ontario, Health and Wellness provides access to thousands of full-text medical journals, magazines, newspapers, reference works, and multimedia outlets on a full range of health-related topics including diseases, disorders, and alternative/complementary medical practices. And because the Health and Wellness Resource Centre is intended for all audiences, the material within ranges in complexity and reading level making it accessible to virtually any age and ability. Publications found within include: 
  • Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine, 3rd Ed.
  • Gale Encyclopedia of Cancer, 2nd Ed.
  • Gale Encyclopedia of Genetic Disorders, 2nd Ed.
  • Gale Encyclopedia of Surgery and Medical Tests, 2nd Ed.
  • Nutrition and Well-Being A-Z
  • Medical Health Information Directory
  • Harvard Special Health Reports
  • Consumer Health Information Source Book
  • Mosby's Medical, Nursing and Allied Health Dictionary
  • Drug Information for Consumers from
  • PDR for Herbal Medicines
  • 300+ pamphlets from leading medical associations (primarily U.S. organizations)
Health and Wellness Resource Centre (H&W) is a Gale product, but is unique in that it's interface is unlike the vendor's other, general reference tools. The interface is customizable and intuitive, and contains many common e-Resource features (click image to enlarge):
  1. Advanced search
  2. Full text limit
  3. Publication search tab
  4. Subject search tabs
  5. Help
Beyond the general interface options, the H&W homepage has a couple of noteworthy tools:
  • The Search Directories box can be used to locate up-to-date contact and general information for various health service agencies, companies, institutions and people—including local Canadian content! A quick search for "Ontario" returns a catalogue of over 1200 records from the Medical and Health Information Directory, listing primary contacts, website information, and organization descriptions.
  • In partnership with Harvard Health, H&W brings you the latest health news from Harvard Health Publications, a division of the Harvard Medical School. You can view top headlines directly from the home page in the section marked Topics In the News, with a link to browse additional headlines. The best part? These stories are updated every eight hours, keeping the homepage fresh and relevant.
Hidden Gem? When you conduct a basic search, H&W presents results as a series of tabs grouped into similar types of sources and documents, pictured here after a search for information on "carpal tunnel":

In your search results, click on the Video tab for a list of multimedia resources from the H&W partner site, Healthology. Here, you’ll find an extensive library of streaming video covering general health, diseases and conditions, mental health, gender-specific topics and age-related issues. Content may also include interviews, questions to ask your doctor, quizzes and more!

These videos not only supplement our existing AV collection, but they make great alternatives to public performance DVDs.

What type of information question might you use Health and Wellness Resource Centre to answer?
  • "What is the difference between wet and dry macular degeneration?"
  • "Why would I take 'ginkgo biloba' and are there side effects?"
  • "What is 'sciatica'?"
  • "Do you have information on that protein stuff they sell in health food stores, 'Creatine'?"
Homework Question: Use Health and Wellness Resource Centre to answer the question below, emailing your response to Answers to these questions can be in point form, but should include all steps taken to complete the query. Please list specific titles of articles (and their publication titles), images, media, etc. pertinent to the question posed. Please also list other e-Resources you could use to support this question.

Liz comes to New Appleby library wanting books about the H1N1 influenza virus, but doesn't want anything with too much “medical jargon”. She would like to know what H1N1 is, exactly, and how it differs from seasonal flu. She’d also like to know more about the Tamiflu vaccination she received this year. Finally, she wants to know, briefly, what impact H1N1 had on the Canadian economy in 2009.

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*Good practice: encourage customers using H&W to read the information disclaimer and consult with their doctors.