Web Magazine for Information Professionals

News from BIOME

Jenny Hall reports on recent news from BIOME, the Health and Life Sciences hub of the Resource Discovery Network .

OMNI Is 10 Years Old!

Happy birthday to OMNI [1], our medical gateway. OMNI (Organised Medical Information Network) was launched in November 1995 as part of the Electronic Libraries Programme (ELib) [2] in response to the increasing pressures on UK university library resources and the explosion in uncontrolled and unorganised information resources on the Internet. Internet resources were selected for their quality and relevance to a particular audience and this was the subject gateway approach.

Like the other eLib gateways, OMNI proved to be popular and served 30,000 page views in its first month alone. The Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC) [3] decided to develop a national Resource Discovery Network (RDN) [4] with a view to deliver, in time, comprehensive and coordinated subject coverage across the whole UK Higher and Further Education subject range. From this BIOME [5] was created in 1999 to become a hub for the health and life sciences and not just medicine. Last month saw BIOME serve 3 million page views. With a catalogue of over 30,000 records now and a strong user base, its success and popularity is a testament to the hard work and commitment of staff and stakeholders. Check out the article about OMNI in the first edition of Ariadne [6] from 1996.

Changes at BIOME

BIOME has a new Service Manager. Jackie Wickham started in mid-October and we are delighted to have her on board. Jackie started her career in public libraries in Nottingham. She has worked in health information for patients and the public since 1989 and set up one of the first telephone health information services. The last four years has seen Jackie in a national role as Head of Health Information for NHS Direct.


  1. OMNI Home page http://omni.ac.uk/
  2. Electronic Libraries Programme http://www.ukoln.ac.uk/services/elib/
  3. JISC http://www.jisc.ac.uk/
  4. RDN http://www.rdn.ac.uk/
  5. BIOME http://biome.ac.uk/
  6. Ariadne issue 1, January 1996 http://www.ariadne.ac.uk/issue1/

Author Details

Jenny Hall
BIOME Admin Officer

Email: jh@biome.ac.uk
Web site: http://biome.ac.uk/

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