The technical cooperation of BIREME develops information products and services applied to management, access and use of information and evidence in health, as well as to building capacity in Latin American and Caribbean countries (LA&C).
For this purpose, the self-learning distance course “Acceso y Uso de la Información Científica en Salud” was developed in Spanish. It is targeted at professionals, researchers, managers and students searching for information and scientific evidence to subsidize their practice and decision-making process in health, mainly exploring the sources of information and resources of the Virtual Health Library (VHL). The course is freely available at the Virtual Campus for Public Health (VCPH), and it grants certificate.
Verônica Abdala, manager of Services and Production of Information Sources at BIREME/PAHO/WHO, underlines that “this initiative will serve a population of information users in Spanish-speaking countries in LA&C, who can hardly take part in several training activities developed by BIREME. In less than one month after launching the course at the VCPH, through BIREME communication actions, more than 700 users have already enrolled and are taking part at the training activity.
Elisabeth Biruel, who supports the ellaboration of online courses at BIREME, stated “it was really a fruitful experience to participate in the development of the course and to know that I am contributing to expand the culture of using evidence in decision-making processes in health. Moreover, based on my experience, I think the didactic material is excellent, has good content and clear and objective language. It is also very useful to train end-users of information in health, which is one the objectives of the current Director of BIREME”.
More about the course
The content of the course is distributed into six units, including the following topics: Identifying the need for information, main types of study, sources of information on health and their characteristics, use of controlled vocabulary DeCS/MeSH, preparing search expressions and resources to explore the search results, with emphasis on VHL features. The content is presented through videos and documents, and self-assessment exercises are provided. Access the course online.