National Library of Medicine improves online search capabilities


The National Library of Medicine has selected Vivisimo, a Pittsburgh-based provider of enterprise search software and expertise, to improve the search functions on its Web site.

The NLM, the world's largest biomedical library, will install Vivisimo's enhanced search functionality to provide users with quick and easy access to medical information on its Web site, www.nlm.nih.gov.

According to its announcement Jan. 17, the company will also improve the search capability of the NLM's consumer health Web sites, MedlinePlus (http://medlineplus.gov) and MedlinePlus en espa'ol (http://medlineplus.gov/spanish/). The sites contain consumer medical and health information provided by government agencies and other organizations.

Visitors to the sites will be able to search for health topics such as arthritis or back pain, and access relevant data, the company said. Furthermore, they will find answers to specific questions such as 'what causes chicken pox?' or 'what are the symptoms of lupus?'

'Consumers want a health information search experience that mirrors their regular Web searches,' said Raul Valdes-Perez, CEO and co-founder of Vivisimo, in the statement. 'Our approach is ideal for public Web sources like MedlinePlus, whose users demand instant gratification and accuracy in their search.'

Vivisimo said its agreement with the NLM is its latest government partnership, which began in 2005 with Vivisimo's search tab installed at gov.clusty.com for political and government-related information. The company also has agreements with the FirstGov Web portal (www.firstgov.gov) and the Defense Department's www.militaryhomefront.dod.mil.

The NLM is located on the campus of the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md.

About the Author

David Hubler is the former print managing editor for GCN and senior editor for Washington Technology. He is freelance writer living in Annandale, Va.

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