To carry out a thorough search of the literature, you should also identify grey literature, work that is either unpublished or has been published in non-commercial form. Grey literature is produced by charities, non-profit organisations, societies, professional associations, universities, central government and local authorities, international bodies (e.g. WHO, World Bank), think tanks, patient and consumer groups, etc.
Grey literature can include: clinical study reports, government documents, conference abstracts, organisational reports, pre-prints, regulatory documents, theses, etc.
Grey literature is not collected, stored and organised in a consistent way, and searching for grey literature can be a challenge. You will need to take a different approach to finding grey literature than when you search a database. Some of the online resources used to find grey literature have a very basic search interface.
|Finding grey literature using CityLibrary Search.
|BASE - Bielefeld Academic Search Engine
|One of the world's largest search engines for academic web resources. It is maintained by Bielefeld University Library. Finding grey literature using BASE..
|Covers topics related to palliative care. Finding grey literature using CareSearch.
|Medical search engine with emphasis on evidence based medicine.
|Provides access to technical, annual and government reports, conference papers, newsletters, magazines, newspapers and consumer brochures covering psychology.
Pre-print studies are studies that have been completed but have not gone through the peer-review process that most scientific journals require.
|Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) Open Research
|Covers a range of health research funded by AMRC.
|Covers ultrasound research.
|HRB Open Research
|Covers a range of health research funded by HRB.
|Covers research in digital health.
|Covers a broad range of health topics.
|Covers research in food science and nutrition.
|Preprints with The Lancet
|For preprints submitted to The Lancet.
|Covers research in psychology.
|SSRN preprint networks
|Used for sharing early stage research (preprints and working papers). You can register on the SSRN platform and subscribe to relevant networks. Registration is free.
|Stories from patients.
|Health Foundation: patient experiences
|Articles, blogs, press releases and reports from the Health Foundation.
|Health Talk Online
|A-Z list of topics with videos of patients talking about their experiences.
|Healthwatch: National Reports Library
|Database of reports produced from patient feedback.
|King's Fund: Patient Experience
|Publications, press releases and blogs from the King's Fund.
|Patient Experience Library
|Reports, policy, guidance and research papers.
|Patient Experience Network
|Aimed at health professionals who wish to improve the experience of patients. Includes, blogs, case studies and reports.
|Patient Experience Research Centre: Publications
|Articles, book chapters, conference proceedings and reports.
|Patient stories through videos.
|News, opinions and analysis, stories and reports.
Help to locate trials that have not been published yet.
|Database of publicly and privately funded clinical studies conducted around the world. Published by the US National Library of Medicine.
|International Standards Randomised Controlled Trial Number Registry
|Provides details of proposed and ongoing RCTs.
|NIHR: Be part of research
|Produced by the National Institute for Health and Care Research. Used to find health and social care research in the UK.
|Database of clinical trials and FDA-approved medical devices developed and funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR).
|UK Clinical Research Network (UKCRN)
|Database of clinical research.
|WHO: International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP)
|Aims to make research accessible to all those involved in health care decision making. Provided by World Health Organisation (WHO).
|Partnership of national and university libraries to improve access to European research theses.
|Aims to maximise visibility and availability of UK's doctoral theses.
|Open Access Theses and Dissertations
|Aims to provide access to freely available theses and dissertations.
|ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Global
|Online resource available for University of London students and staff. Registration to Senate House Library required for remote access.