Health & Medicine

There are many resources at GVPL to help increase your health knowledge. Always consult a health professional about any information found on the internet.

Online Databases – Resources Requiring Login (Library card and password)

Subject Guides – Open Resources (no login required)

In the Library

Find books about… Browse the shelves
General Medicine 610
Human Anatomy 611
Nutrition 613.2
Physical Fitness 613.7
Prescription Drugs 615.1
Alternative Medicine 615.5
Diseases 616
Dental Health 617.6
Eye Care 617.7
Hearing Disorders 617.8

Main Websites of Interest

Mayo Clinic – Information from a major health provider (U.S.).

MedlinePlus Encyclopedia – Over 4,000 articles about diseases, tests, symptoms, injuries and surgeries. Also contains an extensive library of medical photographs and illustrations. [How to use]

Merck Manuals Online Medical Library – Online version of popular health reference book.

Health Canada – Information from the government of Canada on diseases, drug products, and food safety of interest to Canadians. Articles from over hundreds of health magazines plus complete medical reference books.

Health Information-National Institutes of Health (U.S.) – Covers diseases, health and wellness, procedures, and research, along with other helpful information.

Healthy Canadians – Federal government site that gives you access to reliable, easy-to-understand information about health and safety relating to many aspects of our lives.

B.C. & Local Resources

HealthLink BCProvides 24/7 access to non-emergency health information and services in British Columbia. Also accessible by dialing 8-1-1 from anywhere in the province.

Healthy Families BC – BC Ministry Of Health’s website to help British Columbians make healthier choices.

B.C. Cancer Agency – Information for public and patients. Includes information on Vancouver Island Centre.

VIHA – Health Topics – Health information on a variety of topics from Vancouver Island Health Authority.

B.C. College of Dental Surgeons – Contact information for dental professionals across B.C. Includes a Directory of Dentists for the province.

B.C. College of Physicians and Surgeons – Contact information for medical doctors and specialists across B.C. Includes Find A Physician, a listing of Family doctors accepting patients by community across B.C.

Health Information Privacy in BC – website for British Columbia residents to find out about basic information about health information privacy rights

Aboriginal Health

First Nations, Inuit and Aboriginal Health – Canada – Information about maintaining health, about diseases and conditions, about programs available to aboriginal communities.

Eating Well with Canada’s Food Guide- First Nations, Inuit and Métis – A food guide which reflects the values and traditions of Canada’s aboriginal communities.

National Aboriginal Health Organization – Advances and promotes the health and well-being of all First Nations, Inuit and Métis through collaborative research, Indigenous Traditional Knowledge, building capacity, and community led initiatives.

Alternative Medicine

Medline Plus: Complementary and Alternative Medicine – Information about alternative medicine and complementary medicine, including acupuncture, chiropractic and herbal medicines.

National Centre for Complementary and Alternative Medicine – U.S. government’s lead agency on research on practices and products not considered part of conventional medicine.

Healthy Living

Healthy Living Canada – It’s Your Health – Articles from Health Canada and the Public Health Agency on healthy living.

Healthfinder.gov – U.S. government website providing information to help you and those you care about stay healthy.

Heart Health

Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada – Current Canadian information on heart disease, stroke, and healthy living.

First Open Heart Society of British Columbia – Victoria organization providing information for local patients awaiting or recovering from cardiovascular procedures, and support for their families.

Island Heart to Heart – Information for South Island people with heart disease, and their families.

Mental Health & Illness

Mental Health (Canada) – Provides information about mental health care professionals, and mental health issues across Canada.

Mental Health Publications – (National Institute of Mental Health) List of booklets, fact sheets and easy to read material on mental health topics.

Understanding Mental Illness – (Canadian Mental Health Association) Myths about mental illness and background information on major mental illnesses.

Kelty Mental Health Resource Centre – Part of an integrated provincial strategy to improve health literacy in mental health and addictions in British Columbia.


Health Canada: Nutrient Value of Some Common Foods – Lists nutrient value of many different foods.

Canada’s Food Guide – Information about food choices and servings.

Canadian Nutrient File (CNF) – A searchable, computerized file from Health Canada that lists over 143 nutrients in over 5500 foods.

Dial-a-Dietician – For residents and health care professionals of British Columbia.

Nutrition.gov – From the National Agricultural Library (U.S.) offering information about food and human nutrition for consumers.

Prescription Drugs

Health Canada: Drugs & Health Products – Includes current information on health care products and drugs in Canada.

Medline Plus: Drugs and Supplements – Information on prescription and over-the-counter drugs as well as supplements.

Medications to Treat Mental Illness – Examination of prescription drugs to treat mental illnesses From the National Institute of Mental Health.

Public Health & Safety

B.C. Centre for Disease Control – Part of the Provincial Health Services Agency which focuses on preventing and controlling communicable disease and promoting environmental health in the province.

Public Health Agency of Canada – Information on health promotion, infectious disease control, disease control and prevention.

CDC-Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Provides information on healthy living, workplace safety, environmental health and travellers health.

WorkSafeBC – dedicated to promoting workplace health and safety for the workers and employers of British Columbia.

Children, Men, Women & Seniors

AboutKidsHealth – Information on children’s health care topics including resources for children from Hospital for Sick Children.

Canadian Women’s Health Network: Health Topics – Resources, organizations and research on women’s health.

Women’s Health Matters – Resources from Women’s College Hospital (Toronto).

Men’s Health – Information from the Canadian Medical Association.

NIHSeniorHealth (U.S.) – A website featuring health and wellness information for senior adults. Users can: enlarge text; change text contrast; or hear text aloud. Also includes videos on specific health topics.

Evaluating Health Websites

Evaluating Health Information – A tutorial from Medline Plus on how to evaluate information you find on the internet, magazines and TV.

Health Information on the Web – Finding reliable medical information online from the American Academy of Family Physicians.

HonCode – Standard for Health Information on the Web – Eight principles that make up the HonCode from Health On the Net Foundation.