Finding health resources

For more information about health books, databases, useful websites and more, see your Subject Guide
Health Guides

There’s a huge variety of health-related resources out there for you to use. We’ve highlighted some of the key ones on this page, and explained how you might use them to enhance your work.

Your online subject guide contains a collection of key resources that are targeted to your particular branch of health science. Links to the databases and websites mentioned below can be found on these guides.

Journal articles

Journal articles can provide you with important research, opinion, case studies and evidence. Search by keywords or subject headings, and combine two or more of these to create a focused list of results. You can also search by article title/author if you have a specific article in mind.

You can start your search from the library home page, or go directly to an advanced search tool. These search across some (but not all) library databases. A keyword search here will help you scope out how much research you're likely to find on a topic.

There are also a number of health databases listed on your subject guide (go to the 'finding information' tab, and click 'databases and websites'). Databases hold collections of published materials such as journals, systematic reviews and ebooks. Health-related databases you may come across regularly are:

  • Medline
  • AMED
  • PsycARTICLES and PsycINFO
  • And many more!

You will learn over time how to make the most of these to enhance your assignments, but if you need help at any time feel free to pop into the library, or chat online with us.

You'll also find some really useful video guides on how to build searches within databases such as CINAHL on your subject guide

Systematic reviews

Systematic reviews analyse and compare evidence from healthcare studies and controlled trials, to evaluate their effectiveness and summarise the research.

You will find key databases relating to systematic reviews on your subject guide (under 'finding information' and 'databases and websites'), but names to look out for are:

  • Cochrane
  • Campbell Collaboration

We can help you search these databases effectively - just get in touch!

Clinical evidence and trials

Randomised controlled trials are the most reliable method of testing medical interventions. You will find best practice guidelines online, to help you make evidence-based decisions.

Head over to your subject guide (under 'finding information' and 'databases and websites') for links to databases such as:

  • NHS Evidence
  • Cochrane
  • EU Clinical Trials Register

If you'd like advice on searching these or have any other questions, please get in touch.

Policy, legislation and law

Official policy and legislation will help you help work within legal guidelines and understand the context of current working practices.

You'll find links to key policy websites for your area of health on your subject guide (under 'finding information' and 'databases and websites'), for example:

  • Childlink
  • NHS England
  • Every Child Matters
  • Francis Report

If you're stuck in finding the policy or guidelines that you need, get in touch with us and we'll help you find them.


Use statistics to illustrate the size and scale of elements which you discuss in your work. Official statistics are produced by independent bodies that report to the government.

Most of these are freely available online, but we've collected together the ones you're most likely to need on your subject guide (under 'finding information' and 'databases and websites'). These include:

  • Public Health England
  • Office for National Statistics

Please ask us for help if you need it!

Tips for searching

Try thinking about your topic in terms of specific keywords rather than long strings of text. For example, if your topic is the psychological impact of childhood cancer on parents, pick out keywords from this phrase and use these to build an advanced search:

  • "psychological impact"
  • "parents"
  • "cancer"

Also think about other common ways of phrasing/spelling these terms, particularly in a medical setting:

  • "paediatric" (or "pediatric" in US spelling)
  • "tumour" ("tumor")
  • "neoplasms"

Within advanced search and some databases with an advanced search function, you would add these keywords to separate lines of the search page. On other databases such as CINAHL and PsycARTICLES, you search each keyword separately and then click to combine them. A few health databases will even prompt you to use standard medical subject headings (also known as MeSH). 

We're here to help

We understand that learning to use library resources can be difficult, and we're happy to answer all questions you might have about finding/searching resources. We want you to succeed as much as you do! Come and see us in the library, book a tutorial, or chat to us online.

Contact and feedback

We'd love to hear from you, whether you want to ask a question or report an issue.

Contact Us

Report Website Issue

Library news

Subscribe and stay up to date with the latest service announcements.



Latest news

Systems status dashboard

Emergency situations

In case of an emergency, including when a First Aider is needed, contact Security from your mobile:

0121 331 6969

... or desk phone extension: