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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

HINARI Programme User Training

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Advanced Search – this is a page in PubMed where you can find the search history for the session and combine sets from the history by typing the set numbers with the best connecting words – AND or OR.

AND – a Boolean operator used when conducting a search using multiple search-terms; used when you wants to find articles that contain both terms on either side of the AND.

Band 1 and Band 2 countries - Country eligibility is based on gross national income per capita, and eligible countries either fit under Band 1 –free access, or Band 2 – low-cost access.

Citation – a reference that is provided to an article or a book. Includes information about the article or book such as title, author, journal, and page number.

Filter – a feature of PubMed that allows you to limit the citations to certain criteria.  E.g., the “HINARI filter” limits you to citations available in HINARI journals and the “Free full text filter” limits you to citations available for free.

Firewall – a part of a computer network that can be configured to restrict access.   To access HINARI, your institution’s firewall should not block proxy servers, specifically, the HINARI proxy server.

HINARI - HINARI is a free or low-cost digital library of scholarly journals and books in biomedical and related social sciences. Through HINARI, eligible users can get to thousands of electronic journals and numerous online indexes, databases and books to help make clinical decisions, further education, and conduct research.  The HINARI Access to Research in Health Programme was set up by the World Health Organization (WHO) together with major publishers.

Limits – Available in PubMed, allow you to further refine your results.  With Limits, you can narrow your search by date, publication type, patient characteristics, and more.

MeSH database – MeSH is an acronym for Medical Subject Headings.  MeSH terms are assigned to each article by indexers at the National Library of Medicine. These MeSH terms are chosen from a list to describe what the article is about. You can search the MeSH database to find the best MeSH terms for your topic.

OR - a Boolean operator used when conducting a search using multiple search-terms; is used for finding a set of articles that has either of the terms for which you are searching. OR is useful for connecting synonyms (e.g., heart attack OR myocardial infarction).

PDF – a computer file type that is an abbreviation for Portable Document Format.  In HINARI, for the purposes of selecting the articles with the best formatting for saving and printing, it is recommended that you select the PDF file type of file, if it is available.

PMC – an abbreviation for PubMed Central, an open access repository of free articles.

Proxy servers -  A computer networking term, a proxy server acts as an intermediary for requests from clients seeking resources from other servers.  To access HINARI, your computer system must be able to access HINARI’s proxy server.  

PubMed – is the US National Library of Medicine’s search engine for the MEDLINE database.  It searches over 20 million citations to journal articles in medicine, basic sciences, nursing, dentistry, and related biomedical fields.  HINARI contains a special version of PubMed that connects to the full text of articles through the HINARI collections or that are available for free.   

Reference Sources – in addition to journals, reference sources such as encyclopedias, manuals and textbooks are available through HINARI.

World Health Organization (WHO) – the directing and coordinating authority for health within the United Nations system. It is responsible for providing leadership on global health matters, shaping the health research agenda, setting norms and standards, articulating evidence-based policy options, providing technical support to countries and monitoring and assessing health trends. WHO was established in 1948 and has its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.

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