Public Health

Articles, books, statistics, how to cite references, and more information about the multidisciplinary field of public health.

The Best Information Sources for You

Background and General Information

Consumer Health Information -- Information for patients and other laypeople

Specialized Information

Medical Textbooks

  • AccessMedicine is a database of respected medical textbooks, which can all be searched at once
  • Your search will give you a list of book chapters about your topic
  • To narrow your search, add another word to your search, or choose "Narrow by Topic"

Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR, which is part of CDC)

  • The ATSDR search box gives a results list that’s not easy to read
  • Instead, scroll down to "Most Viewed Toxic Substances" to see if what you want is listed there
  • If it is not listed there, use the A-Z list (top right) 
Background and General Information

Library Catalog -- Books

  • Search the library catalog for books about the general topic, using words such as "environmental," "contamination," or "pollution"
  • For example, here is a search for the phrase "environmental fate" in the TITLE, during the past 10 years
  • Use the filters on the left to set the date range and other limits that you want

Library Home Page

Chemistry (specialized information)

Articles and Databases --> Databases --> Chemistry and Chemical Engineering --> Online Resources

  • All databases under "Core" are journal articles
  • Databases under "Chemical and Material Properties" are *not* journal articles; for example, CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics and Merck Index give synonyms, molecular formulas, where found, and other information
Environment (specialized information)

Start with the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency)

  • Do a search
  • If you get more than about 40 results: use Advanced Search, or put the word in the TITLE

Earth and Environmental Sciences --> Online Resources

  • These databases have scholarly articles and some trade journal articles
  • Start with GeoRef and Scopus, and also EPA (Environmental Protection Agency)
  • Note the other tabs, which list additional databases
Research Guides --> Medicine, Nursing, and Other Health Professions --> Drugs and Pharmacology
  • Tabs include adverse effects, mechanisms of action, and PK/PD
  • Databases listed under each tab also include those from government agencies such as CDC and NIH
  • Databases under the "mechanisms of action" tab include environmental fate and toxicity
  • Note especially the HSDB (Hazardous Substances Data Bank) -- "HSDB provides toxicity data for over 5,800 potentially hazardous chemicals. It also has information on emergency handling procedures, industrial hygiene, environmental fate, human exposure, detection methods, and regulatory requirements."

PubMed and EMBASE

  • Use PubMed; you won't need EMBASE
  • *Don't* use Google to find PubMed, or you won't see the links to the full text, including FIND IT@JHU
  • MeSH headings give you definitions!
  • Always start by putting your search words in the TITLE -- in PubMed, that means adding [ti] after the word you want in the title

Science news can be found in several places.
  • General Science Full-text -- This database includes articles from scholarly and trade publications, including Science, Nature, and the New York Times
  • ABI/INFORM -- This is a business database, which includes news about new products and other business-related topics
  • Research guides --> News and Newspapers -- The sources under "Core" are current U.S. newspapers

Librarians who can help with law and policy:

  • Jim Gillispie,GIS and Data Services on A Level,
  • Yunshan Ye, Political Science Librarian,

These gentlemen are both very smart and incredibly nice. Please send them a note as soon as you realize that you will need help.

The library's guide to Citing Sources gives examples of reference styles.

  • Why are citations important? (2.5-minute video from U. North Carolina)

  • Here is the information about  APA style on the Citing Sources guide

  • When in doubt, always err on the side of too much information rather than not enough; it's extremely important that your professors, readers, and future employers be able to find the information that you cite


Easy Ways To Get Articles into a Citation Manager

(1) If you are searching in a database: EXPORT citations from the database to RefWorks (or other citation manager):

  1. Find an article in one of the library's databases
  2. Click on the item
  3. Choose EXPORT (if "export" is an option)

(2) If you have a specific article, but can't easily export it into RefWorks (for example, an article in PubMed):

  1. Put article TITLE into Google Scholar
  2. Click the quotation mark symbol under the entry
  3. Then export to RefWorks or one of the other citation managers listed (to get to the item itself, use FIND IT):

For Writing Help -- Make an appointment with the Writing Center

RefWorks is the citation manager that is supported by JHU. It is free for you.

  • Citation managers let you export citations FROM databases INTO the manager, so that you can put them into separate folders, and print out a bibliography in whatever style you want
  • Here is our guide about how to use it

Use the NEW RefWorks! Log in here.

  • Here are video tutorials about the NEW RefWorks
  • NEVER search from within RefWorks; always search from within the database itself

HELP is the question mark at the top right:

Here are some of the links from HELP:

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