Use of libaries

Information about library access is on the library pages of the University website. Additionally if you are off campus and wish to get the most out of your electronic search you can get a VPN connection here where it is all explained. With VPN it also enhances the functionality of any reference manager you may be using. 

Access to library when on placement.

The NHS library services can provide an excellent resource for trainees.  It is worthwhile going to meet the librarian in your trust to ask what specific tasks they can help with and register for a SWIMS NHS library card which can then be used in all trusts. Librarians are very good at sourcing books and they have access to many more clinically relevant books than the University library, moreover they are often very happy to post them to your placement office.  They can also keep you updated on new publications in your interest area and they can conduct literature searches if requested.

If you borrow a book from the University library the loan period may take you to when you are on placement and not coming to campus. You may be able to negotiate an extension with the library but generally books must be returned on time.

Library Charter for Student on Placement in the South West, Thames Valley and Wessex (HEE)

Your main library for the duration of your course is your university library, which will provide full services, including loans, inter-library loans, access to course reading materials and eletronic resources, information skills training and use of all facilities. You will be able to access eletronic resources remotely.

Whilst you are on placement, you may also use your local NHS library. To find your nearest NHS library and its opening hours, go to

The NHS libraries will provide you with the following during your time on placement:

  • Access during staffed open hours. For some libraries, access is 24/7.
  • Loan and reference facilities (note that books that you borrow must always be returned to the library that lent them)
  • Access to library computers or local Wi-Fi networks
  • Information about the library services and facilities available (an induction session may be organised for you, but if not, please ask)
  • Access to photocopying, printing and scanning services (for which there may be a charge)
  • Access to additional NHS eletronic resources. You'll need an NHS OpenAthens account: your university may issue you with one (the list of participating universities is here), or you can self-register here). You can see the list of NHS electronic resources here.