The Virtual Health Library (VHL) is a library, a decentralized and dynamic information-source collection, designed to provide access to scientific knowledge on health. It is maintained by BIREME, a PAHO (PanAmerican Health Organization) Specialized Center in three languages (English, Portuguese and Spanish).

The VHL is a Network of Networks built collectively and coordinated by BIREME. It is developed, by principle, in a decentralized manner by national instances (Argentina VHL, Brazil VHL etc.) and thematic networks of institutions related to research, education and health services (Nursing VHL, VHL Ministry of Health etc.).

To learn more about the VHL Model please visit

The information sources are selected according to criteria approved by the VHL Network. The index is updated weekly through harvesting of metadata from the collection of information sources.

LILACS is the most important and comprehensive index of scientific and technical literature of Latin America and the Caribbean. It includes ​26 countries​, 882 journals​ and 878.285 records​, 464.451​ of which are full texts​.

IBECS (Índice Bibliográfico Español en Ciencias de la Salud) includes bibliographic references from scientific articles in health sciences published in Spanish journals.

You can access both databases through the Virtual Health Library (VHL) Portal.

LILACS and IBECS contents are indexed following the LILACS methodology. You can download the LILACS indexing guidelines (only in Spanish).

Additional references about LILACS can be found here.