Objectives: The purpose of this study was to identify core journals in home health nursing and to determine how well these journals were covered by indexing and abstracting services. The study was part of the project for mapping the nursing literature of the Medical Library Association's Nursing and Allied Health Resource Section.
Methods: A citation analysis of two core journals was done to determine distribution of references by format types and age of citations and dispersion of the literature, according to Bradford's Law of Scattering. The analysis of indexing coverage for Zone 1 and 2 was also provided.
Results: The study showed that 64.2% of citations came from journals, versus 22.9% from books and 12.9% from other publications. PubMed/ MEDLINE rated highest in average indexing coverage of Zone 1 and 2 journals, followed by CINAHL. PsycINFO, SocioAbstracts, and EBSCO Health Business FullTEXT showed practically no coverage for the home health nursing literature.
Conclusion: As expected, journal articles were found to be the primary source for referencing and books, the secondary source. In regard to bibliographic control, no databases provided full coverage of the journals in the field of home health nursing. PubMed/MEDLINE and CINAHL gave better results in combination, because CINAHL tended to cover more nursing journals, while PubMed/MEDLINE did better with medical titles.