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Law, Health Guide

Legal Dictionaries / Words & Phrases

Legal Dictionaries / Words & Phrases

Legal dictionaries and Words and Phrases can help you research the meaning of legal terms and the legal interpretation of legal words and phrases. This can help when you’re trying to interpret a statute for which there is no clear case law or if you’re trying to discern the meaning of a word in a key legal document, such as a contract or a will.

Legal Dictionaries

Words & Phrases

Legal Encyclopedias

Legal Encyclopedias

Legal encyclopedias contain narrative summaries of the law supported by references to case law and statutes. They are often the best place to start to gain a general understanding of the law in a particular area.

There are two main legal encyclopedias in law: the Canadian Encyclopedic Digest (CED) and Halsbury's Laws of Canada (Halsbury's). CED covers federal, western, and Ontario jurisdictions, and Halsbury's covers all provincial and federal jurisdictions. Both are available in print in the Law Library in the reference section on the first floor.

Electronically, CED is available in Westlaw Edge, while Halsbury's is available in Lexis Advance Quicklaw.

Canadian Encyclopedic Digest

  • Available via Westlaw Edge (law students only) and in print in the reference section (available to all students)
  • Helpful titles include:
    • Hospitals and Health Care (title 80 in vol 31)
    • Hospitals (Western) (not available in print)
    • Medicine (Western) (not available in print)
    • Public Health and Welfare (title 127 in vol 44)

Halsbury's Laws of Canada

  • Available via Lexis Advance Quicklaw (law students only), the campus-wide version of Quicklaw (available to all students), and in print in the reference section (available to all students)
  • Helpful titles include:
    • Medicine and Health (title code HMH)
    • Mental Health (title code HMH)
    • Public Health (title code HPH)

Books

Books

To search for books at UNB Libraries, use UNB WorldCat. UNB WorldCat contains records of materials held at the Harriet Irving, Science and Forestry, Engineering, Hans W. Klohn, and Law libraries.

Search UNB WorldCat:
Limit to: 

Items shown as LAW-RESERVE may be requested at the circulation desk on the first floor of the Law Library. Bring the book's call number with you to the desk. Items shown as LAW-STACKS are on the second floor, and LAW-REF materials are on the first floor in the reference section.

The following books may be useful in your research:

Journal Articles & Databases

Journal Articles & Databases

If you already know the journal title, year, volume number and page number for an article, you may be able to access it electronically by searching for the journal's title in the UNB e-journals database. If we have the journal electronically or in print, it will be listed. You can also look up the journal title in UNB WorldCat.

Keep in mind that it can be best to start with an index rather than a full-text database. An index is essentially a list of articles by topic. Sometimes the article will be available full-text, but often you'll just be given a citation that you can use to track it down somewhere else.

Key Legal Databases:

Non-Law Databases:

  • PubMed
    PubMed is the U.S. National Library of Medicine's (NLM®) database of biomedical citations and abstracts. It includes MEDLINE, which covers over 4,800 journals published in the United States and more than 70 other countries primarily from 1966 to the present.
    Unlimited simultaneous users.
  • PubMed Central (Open Access)
    PubMed Central "is a digital archive of life sciences journal literature at the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), developed and managed by NIH's National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) in the National Library of Medicine (NLM)."
    Some titles in the collection offer only partial Open Access.
    Unlimited simulataneous users.
  • EMBASE
    EMBASE is a major biomedical and pharmaceutical database indexing international journals in the following fields: drug research, pharmacology, pharmaceutics, toxicology, clinical and experimental human medicine, health policy and management, public health, occupational health, environmental health, drug dependence and abuse, psychiatry, forensic medicine, and biomedical engineering/instrumentation.
    Unlimited simultaneous users.
  • Cochrane Clinical Answers (CCAs - Wiley)
    Cochrane Clinical Answers (CCAs) provide a readable, digestible, clinically focused entry point to rigorous research from Cochrane systematic reviews. They are designed to be actionable and to inform decision making at the point of care. Each Cochrane Clinical Answer contains a clinical question, a short answer, and an opportunity to ‘drill down’ to the evidence from relevant Cochrane reviews.
    Unlimited simultaneous users.
  • Cochrane Library
    The Cochrane Library contains high-quality, independent evidence to inform healthcare decision-making. This database includes the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, the Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, the Cochrane Database of Methodology Reviews, the The Cochrane Methodology Register, the Health Technology Assessment Database, and the NHS Economic Evaluation Database.
    Access to the Cochrane Library in New Brunswick is through a province-wide license made possible by a partnership between UNB and the eight Regional Hospital Authority libraries.
    Unlimited simultaneous users.
  • CINAHL with Full Text (Cumulative Index to Nursing & Allied Health Literature - EBSCO)
    CINAHL with Full Text is the world's most comprehensive source of full text for nursing & allied health journals, providing full text for more than 500 journals indexed in CINAHL. This authoritative file contains full text for many of the most used journals in the CINAHL index - with no embargo. With full-text coverage dating back to 1981, CINAHL with Full Text is the definitive research tool for all areas of nursing and allied health literature.
    Unlimited simultaneous users
  • ProQuest Nursing & Allied Health Database
    ProQuest Nursing and Allied Health Source is a collection of core nursing and related publications, this database, designed to meet the needs of researchers at health-care facilities as well as students enrolled in nursing programs at academic institutions. All the source publications are available in the ASCII full-text format. Nearly all of them also offer articles in the full-image and Text+Graphics formats.

    NOTE: In certain instances ProQuest has decided to omit particular 'articles' from full-text access due to copyright restrictions or because the item has not met their criteria for being an 'article' (ie. too short, a letter, not attributed to an author, etc.).
    Unlimited simultaneous users.
  • Ovid Journals - Lippincott Williams & Wilkins Nursing & Health Professions Premier Collection (LWW)
    Lippincott Williams & Wilkins Nursing & Health Professions Premier Collection through Ovid provides access to almost 100 top nursing journals used by nurses, nursing students and health professionals around the world on a daily basis. With the LWW Nursing & Health Professions Premier Collection, UNB benefits from highly respected nursing information, paired with Ovid’s superior searching capabilities and exclusive linking options.
    13 simultaneous users.
  • HealthStar
    Ovid HealthStar is a subset of the National Library of Medicine's (NLM) MEDLINE database. It contains citations to the published literature on health services, technology, administration, and research. HealthStar focuses on both the clinical and non-clinical aspects of health care delivery. The following topics are included: evaluation of patient outcomes; effectiveness of procedures, programs, products, services and processes; administration and planning of health facilities, services and manpower; health insurance; health policy; health services research; health economics and financial management; laws and regulation; personnel administration; quality assurance; licensure; and accreditation.
    Unlimited simultaneous users.

Legislation & Case Law

Legislation & Case Law

Key Resources

The following databases and websites provide access to federal and provincial legislation and case law.

Statutes

The following statutes are related to health law in Canada. For statutes not listed, search the databases listed above.

Cases Digests

Along with searching the databases mentioned above, you should use a case digest to find case law. A case digest service indexes cases by topic, and each topic is broken down into several subtopics. With a case digest, you might find ten, twenty, or hundreds of cases on your research topic, saving you hours of time.

Two important case digests are the Canadian Abridgment Digests and the Canada Digest.

  • Canadian Abridgment Digests
    • Available via Westlaw Edge (law students only) and in print in the reference section (available to all students)
    • Useful titles include:
      • Health Law (vol 49 in print)
  • Canada Digest

Government Documents

Government Documents

Government departments and agencies publish a great deal of important law-related information. The Law Library's collection of printed government documents is located on the library's third floor. Use UNB WorldCat to search, or ask a library staff member for help.

The Harriet Irving Library also has government documents, which can be located through UNB WorldCat.

For government documents that are available online, try using UNB Libraries' Google Custom Search.

Note: if you include site:canada.ca (and/or site:gc.ca) and filetype:pdf in a Google search, you will retrieve PDF documents from Government of Canada websites. This is a good way to find government reports, as they are usually in PDF format.

The following government sites might be useful:

Law Reform Commissions

Law Reform Commissions

Law reform reports and working papers can provide important background information on a topic and recommendations about ways to reform the law in a certain area.

Provincial

Other Jurisdictions

Websites & Blogs

Websites & Blogs

The following websites may be helpful for your research:

There are many blogs maintained by lawyers and law firms, and you can find many of them at lawblogs.ca, an open directory of Canadian blogging lawyers, law librarians, marketers, IT professionals, and paralegals. There are several blogs listed in the medicine & health category that may be helpful.

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