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NHS Evidence promotion – what is missing?

In search engines on September 18, 2009 by africker Tagged: ,

As part of a pattern of missed opportunity comes the latest article promoting NHS Evidence.

The notes from the NHS Evidence update to the latest NICE Board show we can expect lots more of this kind of thing over the coming months with articles to be placed in publications and a wide presence at conferences (including the three major UK political party conferences). 

The article itself is positive about NHS Evidence as you might expect.  Some would suggest that it reads a little too like a press release to be entirely comfortably presented as “Double-blind peer reviewed”.    It is interesting to put the satisfaction of the author in contrast to the recent post here.  It is a little strange to read trailers for features that are not yet present on the site.

An earlier article in E-health-insider provoked several frank comments and, ultimately, a reply from Dr Leng (NHS Evidence COO).  The Nursing Times article is certainly a step forward on that one in the accuracy stakes.

So what is missing from NHS Evidence promotion (and this latest article)?  The answer is of course recognition that NHS Evidence users are not alone in facing the challenge of finding the information they need.  No mention of the network of skilled professionals who help those NHS staff on a daily basis.   The L word is not to be uttered. 

There is some progress – the latest issue of Eyes on Evidence (NHS Newsletter number 5) does recognise that a librarian might be a good person to ask for help (in response to a request for someone to do a search for them).  But fails to make the link to any of the ways people might find that librarian.  This is a step forward on a previous issue which answered the FAQ – How do I search for journal articles?  Answer – this is how to sign up for Athens.  Not really what they asked and a question crying out for the L word answer. 

I hope NHS Evidence will soon overcome this seeming aversion to placing itself in the context of the wider NHS knowledge environment.  It is to the disadvantage of the people it seeks to help if it does not.

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