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New research service increases access to peer-reviewed medical literature


Ottawa, ON – PubMed Central Canada (PMC Canada) is a newly launched service that will allow Canadian researchers to contribute to a growing, searchable digital archive of published Canadian health research.

It is the result of a partnership between the National Research Council’s Canada Institute for Scientific and Technical Information (NRC-CISTI), the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), and the US National Library of Medicine (NLM). With its launch, Canadians have a freely accessible national digital repository of the latest peer-reviewed health and life sciences literature at their fingertips, including research resulting from CIHR funding.

“The global movement to provide barrier-free access to research is gaining strength and with good reason,” says Dr Ian Graham, vice-president of knowledge translation at CIHR. “PMC Canada promotes the sharing of knowledge and will increase the visibility of CIHR-funded research so that it has the greatest possible value and impact.”

The service supports CIHR’s Policy on Access to Research Outputs, which requires CIHR grant recipients to make their peer-reviewed publications freely accessible online within six months of publication. PMC Canada’s manuscript submission system will enable CIHR-funded researchers to deposit their peer-reviewed articles, exposing their research to a global audience and facilitating collaboration to advance scientific progress.

It builds on PubMed Central (PMC), the archive developed by the US National Library of Medicine, and joins UK PubMed Central (UKPMC) as a member of the larger PMC International network. PMC Canada will connect researchers to this international network, making much of PMC and UKPMC content accessible to them.

“PMC Canada is a new and exciting chapter in the long history of productive cooperation between NLM and Canadian institutions to improve worldwide access to life sciences literature and scientific data,” says Donald AB Lindberg, MD, NLM director. “The addition of Canada as a PMCI member should both aid the progress of science and also improve public access to the results of research that affects health and health care.”

This first phase of PMC Canada includes a basic bilingual interface, a manuscript submission system for CIHR researchers and a bilingual help desk. Plans for the second phase of the repository will incorporate a customized web front-end along with enhanced reporting and alerting features for system funders and users. An advisory committee of Canadian health researchers and other stakeholders will guide PMC Canada’s future development.