Friday, March 17, 2006

Open access (OA) medical podcasting

Over at UBC Google scholar blog this week, I blogged the top five (5) podcasting websites which were selected (unscientifically) as a librarian might select books - based on knowledge of what was available, credibility and/or reputation of any authors and publishers as well as evaluation of the quality/presentation of the information itself.

Not surprisingly, whether or not the podcast was openly accessible was also important. In the final analysis, a number of excellent podcasts were ruled out as they were inaccessible, subscription-based or limited in terms of how the information was delivered (iPod only, for example).

What's my point here? In the post-textual web, the principles of open access will have to extend to audio and video formats, the web's new wave. Thus, the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA's new audio commentary and the open-access Arizona Heart Institute all get top honours.

The AHI's multimedia podcasts on cardiovascular topics are free to all patients, and clinicians, and serve as a model in healthcare education. In medicine at least, the principles of open access should be extended to pod and vodcasting; these new types of sources should be made available to all care-givers and patients to improve the quality of patient care. - Dean

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