The text below is a comment on an interesting post by Dr. RW: Are you UpToDate dependent?
It looks like UpToDate is gradually becoming "the universal textbook of medicine." Do you remember the last time you opened Harrison's to consult about a clinical topic? Was that in 1997 or 2001? By the time Harrison's is on the shelf, it is often 5-10 years out of date. And this is where UpToDate steps in -- "up-to-date", what a catchy promising name.
UpToDate is useful and easy to use. We have it installed on every computer at the Cleveland Clinic and residents read it all the time. How many times I have not found the answer to a clinical question in UpToDate? Many. Then I try Pubmed and the plain Google search which both have almost always been helpful.
I don't think anybody should be dependent on a single source. If one cannot practice medicine without UpToDate, may be one should not practice at all.
There is an old proverb: beware the man of a single book (homo unius libri). It describes people with limited knowledge. The current version of the Internet has billions of scientific journal pages and the answer to your questions must be somewhere out there. Do not be the man of one book only.
Are you UpToDate dependent? Notes from Dr. RW, 07/2007.
Image source: UpToDate.
CME thought police alert! Notes from Dr. RW, 01/2008.
Small association between use of UpToDate and reduced patient length of stay, lower mortality (study sponsored by UTD) http://goo.gl/zSG8R
95% of junior doctors consider electronic textbooks the most effective source of knowledge. 70% of junior doctors read the medical literature in response to a specific patient encounter. BMJ, 2011. http://goo.gl/QZyJE
Most up-to-date point-of-care medical resource? Sorry, UpToDate, Dynamed is way faster - BMJ http://goo.gl/4GC5l and http://goo.gl/QQcOh
How Current Are Leading Evidence-Based Medical Textbooks? An Analytic Survey of 4 Online Textbooks (including UpToDate) http://buff.ly/X2kUKw