MedlinePlus is an online information service produced by the United States National Library of Medicine. The service provides curated consumer health information in English and Spanish. The site brings together information from the National Library of Medicine (NLM), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), other U.S. government agencies, and health-related organizations. There is also a site optimized for display on mobile devices, in both English and Spanish. Over 150 million people from around the world use MedlinePlus each year. The service is funded by the NLM and is free to users.
MedlinePlus provides encyclopedic information on health and drug issues, and provides a directory of medical services. MedlinePlus Connect links patients or providers in electronic health record (EHR) systems to related MedlinePlus information on conditions or medications. A mobile site is also available.
The National Library of Medicine has long provided programs and services for professional medical scientists and health care providers, including the pubmed database and the various services that access it, such as PubMed and Entrez. By the 1990s the general public was increasingly also using these services as Internet access became more usual. But nonprofessional users could benefit from reliable health information in a layperson-accessible format. The National Library of Medicine introduced MedlinePlus in October 1998, to provide a non-commercial online service similar, for example, to the commercial WebMD. In 2010 another NCBI service, PubMed Health, complemented MedlinePlus in offering curated consumer health information; PubMed Health focuses especially on finding information about clinical effectiveness of treatments.
MedlinePlus initially provided 22 health topics in English, which eventually expanded to over 800 health topics in English and Spanish, plus links to health information in over 40 languages. The site has received several awards, and been described as, for example, "one of the best places to find medical information". The site scored 84 in the American Customer Satisfaction Index for 2010.
- "Medlineplus.gov en español" (in Spanish).
- "MedlinePlus Statistics". National Institutes of Health.
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- Miller N, Lacroix EM, Backus J (Mar–Apr 2001). "The making of Medlineplus". Public Libraries 40 (2): 111–3.
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- Miles, Alisha (July 2011), "PubMed Health", J Med Libr Assoc 99 (3): 265–266, doi:10.3163/1536-5050.99.3.018, PMC 3133896.
- "ACSI Scores for U.S. Federal Government". The American Customer Satisfaction Index. 2010.