Sherif Ovid Enhancement Group meeting 2021

17th March 2021



Wolters Kluwer: James Kenney, George Killeen, Rani Southern-Darbar, Mauro Castillo Garcia-Maurino

Sherif Ovid Enhancement Group: Delyth Morris (Chair), Jacqueline Smith, Samantha Johnson, Karen Poole, Alison Ashmore, Amy McEwan





Intro – Ovid in 2020 and 2021 (James Kenney)


Ovid responded to the pandemic with free access to as much content as they could. Point of care tools were made available to the NHS. Online textbooks, LWW health library, visual anatomy and practice resources were made available to HEI.

Database usage went up possibly because free access was offered to a lot of other databases but also likely to have been influenced by the shift seen to student literature research projects.

Ovid surveyed HE librarians in June asking what university/library plans were in the next 6 months and what more could publishers do other than offering free access to resources. By the time results were collated much of the information, certainly in relation to university/library plans was out of date. The responses relating to what could publishers do to support libraries better were:

-          Cheaper resources

-          Changes in licencing terms (don’t base pricing on sites, allowing walk-in users and alumni access, making resources cheaper by giving the option for concurrent user limits but not restricting to this)

-          More offers via JISC and other purchasing platforms

-          Flexible ebook pricing (beyond small/medium/large institutions)

-          More flexible packages

-          More collaboration

-          Overseas partner institutions included

-          More promotional and training videos easily discoverable online

2020 also saw a webinar programme offered by Ovid.

The Ovid Open Day took place online. This saw a huge upturn in attendance, giving people who wouldn’t normally attend the opportunity to attend.


-          Uncertainty

-          New Free access programme launching March 2021

-          HE move towards online teaching expected to continue

-          Ebooks - available via PQ Oasis and GOBI

-          Expand the webinar programme with a focus more on training

-          Two Ovid Open Days to take place in 2021 around 2 themes; Education and Research


Term Finder (Rani Southern-Darbar)

Ovid Term Finder is designed to give searchers easy access to relevant definitions, MeSH terms, and keywords as they construct their Ovid searches, all without having to leave the Ovid search interface. Only available on Medline at the moment but there are plans to add it to other Ovid databases hopefully later this year.

TermFinder helps users to translate the vocabulary that we used into the vocabulary that the database used. Maps to MeSh terms, Allows you to find synonyms. Finds subjects which occur frequently.


Search Sharing tools (Rani Southern-Darbar)

Ovid Search Sharing tools are currently in Beta and will hopefully be released officially at the end of this month (March). The tools allow for easy sharing of searches to colleagues/students allowing the recipient to rerun the search with one click. Once the search is sent, the search then becomes the recipients.

The new buttons include email all search history, copy search history link, and copy search history. details

These changes will apply to all databases.


New Ovid Journal Experience (Mauro Castillo Garcia-Maurino)

The new Journal Reading experience improves accessibility to Ovid content. It provides a modernised user-friendly interface and new features and tools to further enhance users’ research. Users will automatically be directed to the new reading experience when they use a link from a discovery service, link resolver, or a direct article Jumpstart link like those in eTOC alerts from Ovid. When users search on the Ovid platform and they click on an internal PDF or full text link for Ovid.


New Books Reader

-          New responsive reading experience

-          Search within the book right from the reader

-          Table of contents navigation

-          Full-screen view

Priorities for 2020/21


-          More books

-          PDF chapter download

-          Citations – cite book and chapter

-          Download images to PPT with citations

-          Highlighting, bookmarking, annotations, sharing and collaboration tools

-          New search and browse experience

-          Personalisation (includes bookmarks, highlighting, annotation and more)


-          Support standard JATS metadata including new fields such as ORCID and features such as text-based tables, MathML, and online video for more accessible content

-          Support continuous publishing and article-based publishing models delivering full-text to the user faster after release from publisher

Ovid Development Roadmap Priorities 2020/21

-          Historical dedup process update and then increase 180 day limitation

-          Improvements in Ovid Admin Tools

-          Performance improvement

-          Continue to modernise Ovid’s look and feel

-          Saved search – update user interface

-          Personal accounts using PIN authentication credentials

-          Search strategy collaboration functionality (copy to clipboard and email)

-          Transition from WCAG 2.0 level to WCAG 2.1 level


New MyWorkSpace

Ovid hope to have new MyWorkspace (first phase) completed and live before June. This includes implementing and improving the display. The changes will be released in a few phases. The biggest change will be to the look and feel, making it nicer to browse. New functionality will include the ability to add searches to favourites.

The second phase will include more options. Changes made are a direct result of discussions and points raised at previous SHERIF meetings. The second phase will include the possibility to ‘sort by’ title/date/alphabetical etc., search within all saved searches, creating folders, and information about when search was created. Timeline for this TBC.


Ovid Resource Center

Resource Center has been updated. The tools are customisable and aimed to improve usage. The Resource Center includes Tools, resources and services.

Tools include PICO search and expert searches. One of the tools released last month was Scientific Production. This widget allows you to search for the output from your institution and searches Ovid full text.

Support and training online tools available.

Ovid always welcome feedback to help them improve the platform.


Pre submitted questions

1)      Why are there updated MeSH terms for COVID-19 in PubMed but we are still waiting for those terms to be applied to Medline via Ovid? It’s now the middle of February and so I would have assumed any annual updating would have been applied at the beginning of the year?

Problem should now have been resolved with the reload

2)      At the last meeting we discussed Ovid updating the permanent search screen to make it easier to manage and run saved searches – could you provide an update please?

See ‘new MyWorkspace’ update

3)      Is it possible to change the default export from Citation to Complete Reference?

Yes – contact Mauro for this to be changed. Many of these functionalities can easily be changed – Rani or Mauro welcome any emails to discuss these changes

4)      Edit function

a.       Sometimes search lines get muddled up and new syntax is automatically added e.g. MeSH syntax is added or the title/abstract field changes to something else, or the lines get combined in way that are different (e.g.) you might have combined 1 or 2 or 3, then you find it says 1 or 4 or 7). You don’t discover this until you re-run the search and it comes out wrong.

Requested to please report any problems with screenshots to Mauro

b.      Clicking on the edit option for a specific search line in the main search window still requires an extra click on the edit screen. Is it possible to streamline this, so if you select to edit a specific search line, this will take you directly to the edit option for this line.

Escalated to be addressed

5)      Organising search strategies

a.       Several staff members requested a way to organised saved search strategies and search filters, through a folder system. There was also a request to have the option to re-order saved searches in different ways, i.e. by date created

See ‘Search Sharing Terms’ update

6)      When will the option to share a search via a link be available to all users?

See ‘Search Sharing Terms’ update

7)      Some users commented that they regularly rely on the PubMed MeSH browser to check and add MeSH terms to their complex saved search strategies in Ovid. Is it possible to incorporate the ‘expand term finder’ within My Workspace (or make it available for cross-referencing) to make things smoother when editing saved searches

To be escalated

8)      One feature that would be good would be the ability to easily share strategies with another user without having to share login details

See ‘Search Sharing Terms’ update

9)      Any plans to make thesaurus similar across platforms?

Would need to be a wider discussion at publisher level

10)  Highlighting incorrect – sometimes if users have searched a phrase then they see highlighting of just one of the words in the title and they assume that it isn’t actually searching on the phrase.

Ticket raised and Ovid are working on it

11)  Point of praise – Ovid is a great platform, superior to that provided by other major database providers; I’ve really appreciated how the functionality has improved over the years, being able to edit your search in the main search window has been particularly helpful


Date of next meeting

Spring 2022 - TBC