How to ... Search NICE Evidence Search

What is NICE Evidence Search?

NICE Evidence Search is a web based portal that brings together a range of high quality evidence-based health information sources. It is managed by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE). NICE Evidence Search covers all areas of health, social care and public health and is designed primarily for health professionals and practitioners, although patients and members of the public are also able to search much of the content.

You can use NICE Evidence Search to search for freely available and subscription-based content available via Open Athens.

To search NICE Evidence Search go to


Searching NICE Evidence Search:

Searching NICE Evidence Search is easy– for a quick search simply enter your search term(s) into the search box and click on :

NICE Evidence Search will simultaneously search over 250,000 resources including the Department of Health, NICE, BNF, Cochrane Library, professional bodies and organisations (e.g. BMA, RCN), patient information sources (e.g. NHS Choices and Patient UK) and health charities such as Cancer Research UK and Diabetes UK.

Unlike a Google search, NICE Evidence Search will filter your results to display only selected, high quality, evidence-based health information. Many of the results will include free full text access.

If you find that your search retrieves a large number of results, try using the search filters on the left of the results page to refine and limit your search. A range of filters are available and include Areas of interest, Types of information, Sources, Medicines and devices and Date.

To apply a filter simply click on the filter and choose from the options listed:

 You can combine filters from different categories (e.g. select Guidance from the Types of information filter and NICE from the Sources filter to show only NICE guidelines) as well as apply multiple filters from the same category (e.g. evidence summaries and systematic reviews from the Types of information filter). Once a filter has been selected, it can be removed by clicking on ‘x’

 A-Z of Topics:

The A-Z of Topics is a collection of selected clinical and public health topics. Each topic provides a concise summary of the clinical topic along with links to key guidance, patient information, medicines information and more.

To browse the A-Z of Topics click on the link on the NICE Evidence Search homepage:

NICE Evidence Search will display a browsable A-Z list of clinical topics:

Each topic is linked to a topic panel. Click on the hyperlinked title to select a topic and view the content.

The topic panel will display an Introduction panel, providing a definition and summary of the clinical topic. Dependent on the topic selected, additional panels may also be available covering areas such as Guidance, Commissioning, Information for the Public and Medicines.

To view any of the panels click on the relevant tab. Each panel will highlight links to key documents and evidence relevant to that area:

Beneath the topic panel NICE Evidence Search will display a full list of search results, giving you the option to quickly access a more detailed search on your topic if needed. Please note:  the results will be identical to a search performed on the NICE Evidence Search homepage so there is no need to search the A-Z of topics and NICE Evidence Search separately.

Open Athens:

To access all the resources available on NICE Evidence Search you will need to register for an Open Athens account. All HEFT staff and placement students are eligible to register for a HEFT Athens account. You can self register for an account by completing the online registration form on the NICE Evidence Search website.

To complete the registration form, click on the Journals and Databases tab on the NICE Evidence Search homepage and select Register for OpenAthens:

You will be redirected to the Open Athens registration form. For more information on how to register for an account please refer to the Library Services’ Athens Registration Guide.

Once you have registered for an account you will be able to access a range of additional resources including healthcare databases (MEDLINE, CINHAL and EMBASE), journals and e-books. For more information on the healthcare databases, journals or e-books please refer to the relevant ‘How to’ guide or contact your local HEFT Library:

Heartlands Library   - Tel: 0121 424 2583 Email: [email protected]

Good Hope Library – Tel: 0121 424 7833 Email: [email protected]

Solihull Library – Tel: 0121 424 5196 Email: [email protected]

For more help or to booking a training session please contact
Laura Walsh, Faculty Training Librarian on 0121 424 0583
or email [email protected]