Objective To develop and validate a PubMed search filter, LIt.search, that automatically retrieves Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health literature and to make it publicly accessible through the Lowitja Institute website.
Methods Search filter development phases included: (1) scoping of the publication characteristics of Aboriginal and Torres Start Islander literature; (2) advisory group input and review; (3) systematic identification and testing of MeSH and text word terms; (4) relevance assessment of the search filter's retrieved items; and (5) translation for use in PubMed through the web.
Results Scoping study analyses demonstrated complexity in the nature and use of possible search terms and publication characteristics. The search filter achieved a recall rate of 84.8% in the full gold standard test set. To determine real-world performance, post-hoc assessment of items retrieved by the search filter in PubMed was undertaken with 87.2% of articles deemed as relevant. The search filter was constructed as a series of URL hyperlinks to enable one-click searching. Conclusion LIt.search is a search tool that facilitates research into practice for improving outcomes in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and is publicly available on the Lowitja Institute website. What is known about this topic? Health professionals, researchers and decision makers can find it difficult to retrieve published literature on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health easily, effectively and in a timely way.
What does this paper add? This paper describes a new web-based searching tool, LIt.search, which facilitates access to the relevant literature. What are the implications for practice? Ready access to published literature on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health reduces a barrier to the use of this evidence in practice. LIt.search encourages the use of this evidence to inform clinical judgement and policy and service decision-making as well as reducing the burdens associated with searching for community practitioners, academics and policy makers.