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Consumer Health Library for Patients & Families: Internet and Subscription Resources

We provide current, reliable health information to help support your decision-making. All services are free.

How to Use Internet & Subscription Databases

Consumer Health Information Tips

  • Consider a website’s sponsoring organization. Look for a sponsor or name? Avoid heavily commercial websites promoting biased information or product sales. Note the last 3 letters of a website’s address to see if the website is commercial (.com), educational (.edu), government sponsored(.gov) or, represents a non-profit organization (.org).
  • Look for sources. Does the website indicate reliable source(s) of information or is there merely opinion or misinformation?
  • Signs of websites to avoid. Red flags can include either grammar or spelling errors, or broken links.
  • Publication date. Locate a recent date showing when information was created or last updated.
  • Discuss all current medicines with your medical provider and include prescriptions, vitamins, herbals, or supplements – which can potentially interact with your medications.
  • Safeguard your personal information. Do not disclose personal information, account numbers, social security number or even driver’s license to any website.
  • Consumer health information is available in Spanish and other languages.
  • Examples of reliable websites for general consumer health information: Medline Plus: - An information and research database hosted by the U.S. National Library of Medicine • American Heart Association: - Provides fact sheets on managing heart conditions • American Diabetes Association: - Includes tips on living with diabetes, from medication options to nutrition and exercise habits • American Cancer Society: - Information about cancer treatments and support services, searchable by U.S. state and cancer type.
  • Contact a health sciences librarian for reliable background information on your topic.
  • Don’t diagnose yourself or rely solely on “Dr. Google!”  Always consult your medical provider.



Internet and Subscription Resources

Internet and Subscription Resources: Ask Library Staff to Assist