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Government Databases in Health

GPO Access

NOTE: These are links to only a selected number of government databases dealing with health and medicine that are available on the Web. The only databases included are those which are considered substantial research sources; almost all have some kind of search capability unless otherwise noted. Consult links on the Government Information Home Page for additional sources of electronic government information.

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CDC (Centers for Disease Control) Wonder. Access to numeric and text databases concerned with health, diseases and mortality. Main CDC page has lots of other information (including information for travelers) and collections of links.

Clinical Trials. A gateway to clinical trials information, including a searchable database of trials, from the National Cancer Institute. is a searchable database of over 4000 federal and private current medical studies. Information given for each study includes purpose, sponsor, eligibility criteria and contact information.

CRS Reports. These research reports by the staff of the Congressional Research Service cover all subject areas and are excellent overviews. Unfortunately there is not an official government site which offers access to the entire collection. But there are several different institutions and individuals who are working to make these valuable resources available:

Dietary Supplements Labels Database. Information about more than 4,000 specific products and substances, including references to any studies. The database facilitates comparisons of various products by listing which ones contain each substance.

Drugs@FDA. A searchable and browsable directory of currently approved and discontinued drugs, both brand name and generic.

Federal R&D Project Summaries. This portal, operated by the Dept. of Energy and the Government Printing Office, allows searches of research project summaries and grant awards for work funded by the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation and the Dept. of Energy.

Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Searchable site contains wealth of technical and consumer information on drugs, medical devices and nutrition.

Food Composition Data. Searchable and browsable database of PDF documents giving detailed composition information for different foods, arranged by major group. The database can be downloaded.

Gateway to Data and Statistics. This service of the HHS Data Council (a group which coordinates government health and human services data collection) provides a search tool for finding health data, a metadirectory of resources, and shortcuts to major data systems and research literature.

Hazardous Substance Release/Health Effects Database (HazDat). Database operated by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry in the Health & Human Services Dept. Contains information on Superfund sites, contamination, specific hazardous substances.

Household Products Database. From the National Insitutes of Health and the National Library of Medicine, this database includes information on the chemical composition and potential health effects of thousands of consumer brands. Searchable and browsable by product or ingredient, information given for each item includes contact information for the manufacturer and links to information about it in the NLM system.

International Bibliographic Information on Dietary Supplements (IBIDS). This database of citations to research on dietary supplements is a joint effort of the National Institutes of Health and the Department of Agriculture.

Law Library Microform Consortium. The Blume Library has made access to this extensive collection of government records, most of which are agencies reports and decisions, available through our Online Catalog. For more information, see the LLMC web site, linked above.

Medicare. Searchable site containing consumer information on Medicare health insurance; includes database of information on managed care companies.

Medline (via PubMed). Massive medical database with references dating back to 1966. Some abstracts.

Medline Plus Health Information. is a site connected with Medline specializing in information for laypersons. You may browse for health information by general topic (e.g., Circulation, Digestive System) or alphabetically by condition, disease or other keyword (e.g. Diabetes, Food allergies, etc.). The site provides links to research articles in Medline as well as full-text information from specialized professional organizations (e.g., American Academy of Pediatrics). There are also links to medical dictionaries, encyclopedias and directories of doctors, hospitals and organizations.

National Library of Medicine LOCATORPlus. Catalog of the world's largest medical library includes references to books, journals and audiovisual materials. Items with electronic equivalents may be hotlinked. The Library also provides this listing of their Databases and Electronic Resources.

National Mental Health Information Center. Databases cover mental health organizations, contact persons, and bibliographic information.

National Prevention Information Network. The old AIDS Clearinghouse has moved to this more broad-based site, which offers publications and service information on HIV, sexually transmitted diseases generally, and tuberculosis, all from a prevention perspective.

National Rehabilitation Information Center. Offers databases of document summaries, reports, programs and other resources.

National Toxicology Program. Databases available include Chemical Safety, which allows searching for material about specific chemicals.

NIH Research Tools. From this webpage you can view online journals, books, databases, and other resources made available by the National Institutes of Health.

Nursing Home Compare. Allows comparisons of nursing homes throughout the country on a variety of criteria. Presented by Medicare, the site also has an extensive set of links to further information on nursing homes and their evaluation.

OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) Laws, Regulations and Interpretations. This page provides access to standards, regulations, compliance guides, review decisions, etc.

PubMed Central. An archive of free life science journal literature from the National Institutes of Health.

Reports of the Surgeon General. The National Library of Medicine makes 70 Surgeon General reports available (in PDF format) at this site. Access is by broad topic, alphabetical by title, or by date issued. There is also a search feature.

Risk-Screening Environmental Indicators (RSEI). This downloadable software uses information from the Toxics Release Inventory to analyze risk factors documented in the Inventory and relate them to health issues.

Trends in Health and Aging. This interactive database from the Centers for Disease Control contains information on health status, behaviors, utilization and costs associated with the country's older population. You may query the database directly and receive charts or tables in response, or download a special browser that allows for more customization options.

UNData. A portal providing access to various UN databases, totalling over 50 million records.

What's in the Food You Eat Search Tool. The database provides detailed nutrient information on more than 13,000 foods. From this page you can either search the online database or download the search tool.

Where to Write for Vital Records. This is a directory of current contact information for state agencies which maintain vital records. Information is given for persons needing to order copies.

WISQARS (Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System). This service of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention can produce customized reports on injury and death rates from different causes and among different groups of people through a search form that allows specification of seven categories (type of accident, race, gender, years, state, etc.). Data is from 1981 through 1997.

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