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Overviews & Background
Read about symptoms, causes, treatment and prevention for over 900 diseases, illnesses, health conditions and wellness issues from the National Institutes of Health.
Health and Wellness (Gale)
Health & Wellness Resource Center is a comprehensive resource for libraries, schools, and hospitals that provides integrated access to medical, health, and wellness information through an intuitive Web interface. Including the respected Gale Encyclopedias of Medicine, Health & Wellness Resource Center delivers up-to-date reference material as well as full-text magazines, journals, and pamphlets from a wide variety of authoritative medical sources.
Online Dictionaries & Encyclopedias
Encyclopedia of Public Health
The Encyclopedic of Public Health presents the most important definitions, principles and general perspectives of public health, written by experts of the different fields. Entries comprise review-style articles, detailed essays and short definitions.
A Dictionary of Public Health
The Dictionary of Public Health is an alphabetical listing of almost 5,000 words and phrases used in public health science and practice. It offers definitions, discussion, and an occasional brief commentary on the relevance of each term to people and their health.
Health Care Systems Around the World
This concise reference provides a one-stop point of research that examines major aspects of health care systems for over 190 countries worldwide. Each country is presented on a two- or three-page spread with the same descriptive and statistical content, allowing readers to compare health care systems from country to country.
Encyclopedia of Global Health
The Encyclopedia of Global Health covers all aspects of health, including physical and mental health entries, biographies of major doctors and researchers, profiles of medical institutions, organizations, and corporations, descriptions of drugs and operations, articles on national health policies, and thematic health topics in the humanities.
The Oxford Illustrated Companion to Medicine
This Companion is a fascinating and authoritative guide to the field of medicine and its specialties. More than 200 contributors have contributed over 500 substantial articles and many more shorter ones, ranging from "abortion" to "zygote".
Black's Medical Dictionary
Containing more than 5,500 definitions and descriptions of medical terms and concepts, with more than 1,000 diagrams, drawings, and color illustrations--and helpful appendices on common medical tests and procedures, travel and health, measurements in medicine, health economics, complementary and alternative medicine, and an address list of professional support organizations.
Find more background sources in the catalog by adding your keyword(s) to this reference-specific search:
How to Maximize Reference Sources
References sources, particularly specialized encyclopedias, offer many benefits. Consider the following tips as you review a reference source on your topic to reap all the benefits and make your researching even better.
- Get definitions and background - Reference sources assume that you are new to a topic. Jargon and specialized terminology will be explained and contextualized, which you might not get in more advanced books and journal articles.
- Get caught-up on a topic - Research is a conversation, and often it has been going on for years. Reference sources will provide a historical background and identify key developments to help you understand how we got to the current understandings and theories.
- Identify key people and theories - Who are the most important people and ideas on your topic? Reference sources will help you identify them so you can explore their lives and research more deeply.
- Find more sources - Reference sources will provide additional reading, usually in the form of references or background lists. These are a great next-step in your research process.