What is RSS ?

RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication. It is a way to quickly find out new information on the internet. This is done by the publishing of short headlines and summaries that say what is new on a website, with links to the full articles. These summaries (RSS files) are picked up and read by simplified web browsers known as RSS Readers (or RSS Aggregators). RSS can also be used to announce your own news and publications to the world.

RSS files are now provided by many leading online medical journals and medical resources on the internet, such as PubMed, the BMJ and Medscape. It will soon be available as standard with all respected websites.

RSS is the future. Use it for medical research, to promote your own department or keep at the cutting edge of your speciality.

How can RSS help you?

RSS can save you time you never had, by bringing to your desktop lists of new headlines from your favourite medical resources, with abstracts and links to the full articles should you require.

A good RSS reader will enable you to scan through vast amounts of the latest medical data in minutes, that would not otherwise have been possible. With some readers you will be able to set up advanced ongoing searches and automatic filing of useful documents for later use.

RSS can also be used to publish your own news via the internet, such as departmental case reports and developments, details of important meetings and newsletters

Sound interesting ?

The best way to understand RSS and how it can help you is to have a go. To use RSS, you need to install a small program called an RSS reader. There are many mobile apps that are available to download for free that act as RSS readers. Alternatively you may use an online service.

RSS readers are like web browsers, but instead of showing you websites, they show you a list of new headlines and summaries of publications (rather like abstracts), with links to take you to the actual websites should you decide you want to read the whole article.

We recommend you try Feedly which is available as an online service or as a mobile app.