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Galvin, Brian and Farragher, Louise (2005) National Documentation Centre. Drugnet Ireland, Issue 14, Summer 2005, pp. 20-21.

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Through its work with researchers, and the range of valuable information resources it maintains, the National Documentation Centre on Drug Use (NDC) makes an important contribution to the development of knowledge about drug issues.  Over the next few issues of Drugnet Ireland  we will be highlighting some of these resources, which are available to everyone either online or in the NDC library.

In this issue we will be looking at: 

·         Online databases

·         NDC news service


 Online databases in the National Documentation Centre

The NDC subscribes to a number of online bibliographic databases.  Visitors to the NDC library can search these databases with the assistance of NDC staff.  Bibliographic databases are essential to any researcher wishing to undertake a comprehensive literature review or identify pertinent works in a specific area of study. 

Web of Science databases

The Web of Science comprises three separate databases that can be searched independently or in combination.  These databases provide access to current and retrospective bibliographic information, author abstracts, and cited references found in approximately 8,700 journals.

A unique aspect of the Web of Science is that it allows cited reference searching.  It is possible to navigate through the literature, to identify works which have been cited in a particular article, and to assess the impact of the article by identifying those works which have cited it.  The user can search across all disciplines to identify all the information relevant to their research, no matter when it was published.  The three Web of Science databases are:


·         The Science Citation Index covers over 5,800 journals and is updated by more than 17,000 new records every week.

·         The Social Sciences Citation Index covers over 1,700 journals and is updated by 2,000 new records every week.

·         The Arts & Humanities Index covers over 1,100 journals and is updated by 2,300 new records every week.



PsycINFO is a bibliographic database that provides abstracts and citations to literature in the behavioural science and mental health fields.  It includes materials in the fields of psychiatry, psychology, social science, law and medicine, as well as addiction and drug use.  PsycINFO is published by the American Psychological Association and the database is made available to the NDC through the Ovid platform.  This is a platform that is widely used by health information professionals to access databases of relevance to their work and is easy to use and attractive. 

There are over two million records – bibliographic details and abstracts – on PsyINFO, with more that 100,000 new records added each year.  The database covers 2,000 titles, 98 per cent of which are peer-reviewed journals.  PyscINFO also includes chapters of books and dissertations selected from Dissertations Abstracts International.  A new edition of PsycINFO will be launched this summer.  It will make searching easier and more intuitive.  Another important feature is Links@Ovid which allows the searcher to move directly from the bibliographic record to the full text of the article, if these articles are in journals to which the NDC subscribes or are in open access journals.

  Addiction Abstracts

 Addiction Abstracts is published in both serial and database format.  The serial is published quarterly and contains citations and abstracts from around 60 core journals specialising in the addiction and substance use fields.  It regularly scans around 100 other journals in the broader health, education psychology and social science fields.  The contents of the current and all back issues of Addiction Abstracts are available on the database.

NDC News Service

The NDC News service comprises a listing of news stories, notifications of new publications, and Dáil debates.  It is updated daily.

News stories

Every day NDC staff scan news stories in national, local and specialist press, online news sites and other media to identify topical stories to include in the news listing.   Each item in the listing contains a summary of the story and information on its source.  The most recent stories are added to the home page of the NDC website and all stories are held in an archive, from where they can be retrieved using subject headings. There are now 1,800 items in the news archive going back to early 2002.  

New Publications

The News section of the NDC website also highlights new publications of interest to people working in the drugs area.  The notification includes a link to a copy of the report, if the publishers have made an electronic copy available. 

Dáil debates

The News section also contains selected content from current Dáil debates.  Speeches, written answers and other discussions dealing primarily with the drugs issue are added in full text to the News section every two weeks when the Dáil is in session.   

A selection of these news items is included in the NDC’s monthly electronic newsletter.  You can sign up to receive this newsletter.

If you would like to arrange a group visit to the NDC, or if you would like a member of the NDC staff to talk to your class or organisation, please contact us at nd@'hrb.ie.

The National Documentation Centre on Drug Use is funded by the Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs under the National Development Plan 2000–2006.

Item Type
Publication Type
Irish-related, Open Access, Article
Drug Type
All substances
Intervention Type
Education and training
Issue Title
Issue 14, Summer 2005
April 2005
Page Range
pp. 20-21
Health Research Board
Issue 14, Summer 2005
Accession Number
HRB (Available)

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