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John Squire Library
How to Use the Library


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1. Notes on Literature Searching

2. Searching for Books

3. Reference Books

    • Dictionaries
    • Directories
    • Government Publications
    • Statistics
    • Other Resources

4. Searching for Journal Articles

    • Databases (CD-ROM and KA24)
    • Current Awareness Bulletins

5. Using the Internet and NHSNet

6. Referencing Your Work

7. Other Library Services

8. The General (Patients') Library

1. Notes on Literature Searchingup

Some helpful hints:

  • Keep full records of all the references you use, as this will make life a lot easier later, when you need to include references at the end of your work!
  • If you intend to use CD-ROM databases, KA24, the Library catalogue or the Internet, try to think of possible synonyms for your search words. For example, if you are looking for material on nutrition, consider also using the terms 'food' or 'diet'.
  • Allow plenty of time for your search, particularly if you need to request items from other libraries.
  • If you need training on how to use the Library, it is a good idea to book it in advance.

2. Searching for Booksup

All the books in the John Squire Library are shelved in the Book Room on Level 5 (upstairs). Most of the books are available for borrowing, but there is a reference section for material such as dictionaries, handbooks, directories and electronic books. There are also smaller sections for annual reports and statistical series. The books are kept in subject order, and each book has a class-mark to indicate where it is shelved.

To find a book on a particular subject, it is possible to browse the shelves or use the subject guides that are available in the library. For more detailed subject searching or to look for a particular author or title, it is preferable to use the Library catalogue.

The Library catalogue (located on the Catalogue PCs in the Book Room) is a complete listing of all the books and reports held in the Library. The catalogue can be searched by Author/Editor, Keyword, or Subject. Please see the instructions next to it on how to use it.

When you have found the item you want on the catalogue, make a note of its class-mark, and whether it is a reference book, pamphlet or another type such as an electronic book. This will enable you to locate the item.

If the item you require is not on the shelf but is held by the Library, it may well be on loan - please ask a member of staff to reserve it for you. If the item you require is not held by the Library, it may be possible to obtain it from another library via the inter-library request service for a small charge. Remember to allow sufficient time for requests to arrive.

3. Reference Booksup

The library holds a number of reference books that you may find useful, such as dictionaries, directories, and Government publications.

The following are a few useful examples, please check the book catalogue for others. Except where indicated, these are held in the reference section in the Book Room (level 5):


The concise Oxford English dictionary. 9th ed. 
Oxford University Press: 1999. 


Available on Book Room PC 1
Anderson, K.N et al
Mosby's medical, nursing and allied health dictionary, 
Mosby: 1998.
Tiran, D
Bailliere's midwives' dictionary. 9th ed. 
Bailliere Tindall: 1997
Weller, B. (ed)
Bailliere's nurses' dictionary. 22nd 
Bailliere Tindall: 1997


The Library stocks a range of directories covering subjects such as addresses of organisations, the NHS and drug information. These are just a few examples.

Charities Aid Foundation
Directory of grant making trusts 1999-2000. In 3 vols. 16th ed.
Charities Aid Foundation: 1999.


Department of Health; Scottish Office; Welsh Office; Department of Health and Social Services for Northern Ireland
British pharmacopoeia 1999. 
The Stationery Office: 1999.

Available on Book Room PC 1 

Directory of British associations and associations in Ireland. 15th ed.
CBD Research: 2000.


Family Welfare Association
Charities digest 2000. 106th ed. 
Waterlow Information Services: 1999.


Institute of Healthcare Management
The IHM yearbook 2000/2001
Stationery Office: 2000.

Shelved on Level 5 landing
Continues IHSM health and social services yearbook

McCormick, F.; Renfrew, M. (eds)
The midwifery research database: MIRIAD : a sourcebook of information about research in midwifery. 3rd ed.
Books for Midwives: 1997.


Parfitt, K. (ed)
Martindale: the complete drug reference. 32nd ed. Pharmaceutical Press: 1999.


Skidmore-Roth, L.
Mosby's 2000 nursing drug reference. 
Mosby: 2000.


UK - info disk 2000.
i-CD: 2000. 

Available on Book Room PC 2

Government Publicationsup

The Library holds a range of Government Publications such as Acts of Parliament, White Papers and reports. The most important ones are kept in the reference section, but there are sometimes lending copies as well. For full details, check the Library catalogue.

Department of Health 
The NHS plan: a plan for investment: a plan for
reform. (Cm 4818-I.)
The Stationery Office: 2000.


Department of Health
The new NHS: modern, dependable. 
(Cm 3807.) 
Stationery Office: 1997.

Loan copies also held

Department of Health
Our healthier nation: a contract for health. 
(CM 3852.) 
Stationery Office: 1998.

Loan copies also held


The library holds a range of different types of statistical information. A 'Guide to Health Care Statistics' is available in the Library and on our Web site.

Other Resourcesup

The Library holds a number of other useful reference sources, including a collection of electronic books and multimedia CD-ROMs.

For more information, please use the Library catalogue.

4. Searching for Journal Articlesup

All the journals are shelved on Level 4 in the Jenny Wade Room. The current copies of journals are kept in the pigeon holes that face you as you walk in. Back copies of journals are shelved around the room in alphabetical order by title. A few weekly journals (such as the British Medical Journal, Lancet, Nursing Times, and Nursing Standard) are shelved in a separate sequence on the wall shelves outside the Database Room. Please refer to the Journal Holdings List (available in the Jenny Wade Room or on the web-site) to check whether we keep a particular title, and what years we have.

If you require an article from a journal that we do not stock, you can request it through our inter-library request service for a small charge. Remember to allow sufficient time for requests to arrive.

Journals contain information that is usually much more up to date than books, and often in greater detail, however, finding relevant information in journals is different to searching for books, and this is where databases are useful.

Databases (CD-ROM and KA24)

The CD-ROM terminals are located in the Database Room on Level 4. Training is available on all our CD-ROM databases, or Library staff can carry out searches for you if required.

In most cases, a CD-ROM search will provide you with a list of references to journal articles, and sometimes an abstract (summary) of the contents. You will then need to locate the journal on the shelf, or if it is not held here, you will need to request a copy.

For general guidance on using the CD-ROMs, please see the guides that are available in the Database Room.

The CD-ROMs available in the Library are:


Indexes c. 3,600 journals from more than 70 countries.

Covers clinical medicine, anatomy, pharmacology, toxicology, genetics, microbiology, pathology, environmental health, occupational medicine, medical psychology, biomedical technology, dentistry, veterinary medicine and others.

Updated monthly.


Stands for Cumulated Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature. Indexes over 650 journals, almost exclusively English language. Covers nursing and allied health literature

Updated monthly.

British Nursing Index (BNI)up

Contains references from over 200 British and English language nursing related journals.

Updated quarterly

In addition, it is possible to access a number of databases and journals over the Internet using KA24 and the National electronic Library for Health (NeLH) . 

For more information, see the Guide to Health Care Databases.

The KA24 service enables you to set up personal AutoAlerts, whereby a search is run automatically on your behalf every month, to locate new articles of interest in your subject area. The references are then e-mailed to you. Please ask a member of Library staff for more information or if you need help in setting up an AutoAlert.

Current Awareness Bulletinsup

The John Squire Library in collaboration with other libraries in the area produces a Current Awareness Bulletin for nurses, midwives and PAMs which aims to highlight recent research and developments. Copies of this are available in the library to take away, or you may wish to be added to the mailing list.

5. Using the Internet and NHSNetup

Facilities are provided for access to the Internet and NHSNet in the Database Room on Level 4 (inside the Jenny Wade Room). These facilities are provided for work-related purposes only and must comply with North West London Hospitals NHS Trust guidelines on the use of networked facilities.

While a lot of information is now available on the Internet, there is a lot that is of variable quality, and a lot that is not yet available. A search of the Internet may be useful, but it should not be relied upon as a definitive search, and any material retrieved from the Internet needs to be critically appraised.

The most reliable way to use the Internet is to use databases such as Medline and the Cochrane Library (available through KA24) or to use sites such as the National Electronic Library for Health (NeLH). More information about searching the Internet can be found in our 'Guide to Using the Web'.

6. Referencing Your Workup

Requirements for references and citations may vary depending on your place of study or your own preferences. For useful information on how to reference your work, these articles may be useful:

Bryar, R.
The world of referencing
Nursing Times
1994 90(7) p. 36-41 Sep 7th

Dwyer, M.
A guide to the Harvard referencing system
British Journal of Nursing
1995 4(10) p. 599-602

More information can be found in our Guide to Referencing.

There is also a useful site on the Internet at www.mco.edu/lib/instr/libinsta.html with instructions for authors for a large number of health care journals.

7. Other Servicesup

The library offers other services such as word-processing facilities (using Word 2000 - Excel and PowerPoint 2000 are also available), a small range of stationery for sale, laminating and comb-binding.

A number of courses are run on a regular basis to help you locate information, such as literature searching workshops, and library tours - please check the noticeboards or Website, or contact the Library for more information.

The John Squire Library web-site includes a page with a number of links to useful Internet resources covering all areas of health. These include Internet search tools, health databases, catalogues of other libraries, patient information and other health care resources.

8. The General (Patients') Libraryup

The General (Patients') Library is a useful resource for consumer health information. They hold a wide range of leaflets and books aimed at patients and carers, and have a number of directories of national and local self-help and support groups. It also has a its own web site, with links to many useful sites for patient information.

The General (Patients') Library is on Level 3, downstairs from the John Squire Library and can be contacted on 020 8869 3940.

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Last updated 12th September 2002