REHABDATA

Produced by the National Rehabilitation Information Center, REHABDATA offers more than 12,000 items from 1997 to the present, and the backfile, which provides around 51,000 documents from 1956-1996. The database covers physical, mental, and psychiatric disabilities, independent living, vocational rehabilitation, special education, assistive technology, law, employment, and other issues related to people with disabilities. Document types indexed include research reports, books, journal articles, and audiovisual materials. REHABDATA offers keyword searching using a thesaurus of more than 830 terms, many of which are more discipline-specific than in other databases like MEDLINE and CINAHL. For example, several different terms must be used in MEDLINE when searching for “assistive technology for stroke patients.” Although stroke and assistive technology are both descriptors in the REHABDATA thesaurus, specific types of assistive technology have their own descriptors and should be combined using the OR operator. Truncation (*) and Boolean are supported, though symbols are used in place of the AND, OR, and NOT operators. There is also an advanced search screen for field-specific searching. A tutorial is available for further guidance, as well as registration for free e-mail updates on literature in a variety of subject areas.

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