Please contact your Regional Medical Library (RML) for immediate assistance with DOCLINE.

Libraries in Canada should contact for DOCLINE Support.

What is DOCLINE?

DOCLINE is the National Library of Medicine's interlibrary loan (ILL) request routing system. The purpose of the system is to improve access to biomedical literature for libraries in the Network of the National Library of Medicine (NNLM) and beyond.

DOCLINE provides efficient lending and borrowing by finding potential lenders for ILL requests via the routing algorithm, which matches requests to lenders, based on their reported journal holdings. This routing algorithm is what makes DOCLINE ILL prompt and accurate.

Requests can be created, routed, received, and updated in this system. Requested materials cannot be transmitted through the website. DOCLINE participants can check the status of requests for which they are either the borrowing or lending library. The DOCLINE User Manual assists the user through the steps needed to accomplish lending, borrowing, and other user tasks. Additional DOCLINE information can be found at DOCLINE System User Resources.

The system is intended for reciprocal ILL among biomedical libraries in the United States and Canada. It supports resource sharing among participating libraries by enabling them to borrow from and lend to one another; it is not an article purchasing mechanism.

DOCLINE is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Some DOCLINE activities are suspended on U.S. national holidays. Scheduled maintenance is announced to subscribers of the DOCLINE-L Email Discussion List.

The dates and times used by the DOCLINE System are based on Eastern Time.

There is no charge for participation in DOCLINE for NNLM members. Interlibrary loan transaction charges vary by lender.

Who Can Use DOCLINE?

Libraries with a health sciences or biomedical literature collection and mission may participate in DOCLINE. Libraries willing to fulfill lending requests from other DOCLINE libraries from a minimum of 10 journals. Currently libraries located outside of the U.S. and Canada, and commercial document delivery vendors are not eligible for DOCLINE membership. To learn more about DOCLINE and how to apply, please review DOCLINE Participation Guidelines.

Open Access Resources

For those organizations not eligible to use DOCLINE and others, a list of resources for obtaining free, full-text academic articles for your use has been created: Open Access Resources. A printable version is also available.

DOCLINE Library Groups and FREESHARE

DOCLINE Library Groups consist of DOCLINE libraries who follow a shared set of lending rules when lending to each other. More information about Library Groups is available in the DOCLINE User Manual (pdf).

Members of the Library Group FREESHARE lend to other FREESHARE libraries at no-cost ($0.00 base fee). To participate in FREESHARE, your library must follow these guidelines:

  • Review your licensing agreements to make sure your library is legally allowed to provide for no-cost lending for Interlibrary Loan
  • Participate in FREESHARE by lending and borrowing in equal measure

Contact your Regional DOCLINE Support coordinator (listed above) for more information or to be added to the group. Libraries who participate in FREESHARE but do not follow the group’s guidelines will be notified and removed from the group.

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