Inter-Library Loans / Document Delivery

What do I need to know?

Document delivery (also known as document supply or inter-library loans) is a service which is normally provided free of charge to the person who requests either a copy of an article, chapter or book although there will be exceptions to this.  Health Education England have provided Good Practice Guidelines for Inter-lending and document supply which are available at at

In the NHS there are 6 regional networks which can be used for document supply:

  • EDEN (East of England)
  • LENDS (London)
  • MIDS (Midlands)
  • PANDDA (North)
  • SENDS (Kent, Surrey and Sussex)
  • SWIMS (South)

The first one that you will use to start with will be your own network e.g. EDEN or SWIMS etc. The order in which you can approach other networks can be found here

There are 2 other networks which can be used for document supply before approaching the British Library. It is worth checking with your library to see if you have access to these networks:

  • NULJ (Nursing Union List of Journals)
  • PLCS (Psychiatric Libraries Co-operative Scheme)

Your next choice would be the British Library.  It is advisable to check with your reader before requesting either a book or article from the British Library as quite often there will be a fee to pay.  In addition to this you may require a signed copyright declaration before obtaining a copy, this can be checked here A signed copyright declaration will also be required if a request is for a member of staff who is not employed by the NHS or a non-NHS library. HEE have provided a guidance for library staff on document supply and copyright

If you are unsuccessful with the British Library then you can try the reprints desk and finally as last resort there is the HealthILL email. For details of the terms and conditions of using this group please visit

Where can I learn more?

Colleagues in your own service or local services will be able to help you.

Who can I contact?

Local colleagues as above via local networks or the Health Library and Information Services Directory HLISD (

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