Interviews with 402 randomly selected health professionals identified the information habits health professionals used to stay abreast of current advances in medicine. The use of various information sources was related to such factors as their type of practice, specialty, location of practice, professional's age, and the size of their primary hospital. In addition to medical literature, the most common source, the typical responder spent one to five hours each week in discussions with colleagues. He or she also spent five to ten hours each year at local professional meetings, five to ten hours per year at state meetings, ten to 15 hours per year at national meetings, and ten to 15 hours per year at educational courses sponsored by various medical schools. Unsolicited medical literature was used extensively, particularly by those in rural, solo practice.