Public Health

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

Find Journal Articles, News, Conference Papers, and More

Save your time! Use these search techniques:
  • Put quotation marks around PHRASES (two or more words), so that the words are searched together
    --- Example: "chicken pox"
  • Put an asterisk at the end of words, so that you get all of the word endings
    --- Example: high* = high, highs, higher, highest
  • Think of alternate spellings or synonyms
    --- Example: healthcare or "health care"; malfunction or failure
  • Start by putting your search words in the Title. If you get nothing, you can take them out of the Title and move them to "Anywhere."
Before you get to the specific information such as articles or statistics, get an overview of your topic:

1) Encyclopedias -- For example, here are public-health-related encyclopedias, all online, from 2016+ 

2) Medical information for consumers in

3) Go to PubMed and use MeSH (the excellent thesaurus) -- Definitions are here, too!
(See the PubMed/EMBASE page on this guide for how to get PubMed citations into RefWorks.)

4) Look for REVIEW ARTICLES. In most databases, just add the word "review" to your TITLE words.
In PubMed :

  • Do your search
  • On the left, under "Article types," click "Review"


5) Force Google to find reports and other info from U.S. government sites -- add this to your search:
(Note that anything in the list with "ncbi" in it is a PubMed article; you can exclude those by adding this:   -ncbi   [note the minus sign] )

6) CQ Researcher for background and summaries of topics -- Make sure to notice the dates


Finding Information about Everything

1. Library home page --> Databases

2.  Click "Browse list of databases"

Library home page, databases link


3. Choose a subject to see the databases with information about it.


4. In each list, start with the databases under CORE -- they are the best and most relevant 

  • For a description about the database's topics, click "More Info" next to the database name

In addition to news, news items can also provide the names of information sources about your topics.

For business news: the best database is ABI/INFORM, and the other two under CORE

  • Library home page --> Databases by Topic --> Business --> CORE

For law, regulations, and related topics, start with CQ Researcher

  • Choose "Hot Topics," then "Health"
  • sort by date

See this guide's page about Literature Reviews.

Who else is doing this kind of work?

You can find out by doing regular searches. But if you have found a great article that is about your topic, you can also see who cited THAT article.

For example, if you found a great article from 2017, you can see what other articles cited that article since it was written. If the author of your favorite article was cited by someone else, there is a good chance that the citing author (that is, the person who mentioned *your* article) is doing similar work. (Remember that newer articles will not have had time to be cited by other authors.)

Databases that tell you who cited papers are:

  1. Web of Science -- (see screen shots below)
  2. Scopus -- Go to "cited by" on the far right, and click on the number
  3. Google Scholar -- Tells you how many times each article has been cited, and click on the number. (NOTE: Google Scholar's number will almost always be too high, because Scholar adds additional things such as lecture notes and Powerpoint slides.)

In Web of Science, choose "Cited Reference Search," and add the information about the paper you want to see cited ("Cited Work" is the JOURNAL title, not the article):

Click SEARCH, and click the number under "Citing Articles":





The library's Citing Sources guide gives examples for the three main reference styles and some others.

  • You may use any style you wish
  • In our field, the most common styles used are APA and AMA

How these differ for in-text citations:
--- APA uses author/date, and bibliography is in alphabetical order by author
--- AMA uses superscript numbers, and bibliography is in order of use. [Hint: it's easy to lose track of which numbers go with which references, so be extra careful.]

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

Here is our guide about how to use it.

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