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October 2, 1996

The Virtual Hospital

Author Affiliations

Texas Medical Center Library Houston

JAMA. 1996;276(13):1091-1092. doi:10.1001/jama.1996.03540130089040

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In June 1996, while declaring the Communications Decency Act unconstitutional, a panel of federal judges concluded that the chaos of the Internet is one of its strengths and proposed broad First Amendment protection. This same chaos means that finding the Internet sites that deliver thoughtful, professional content at this improvisational stage of development can be tedious.

Although still maturing, the Virtual Hospital is one of the best medical sites and a compelling demonstration of the Internet's potential to impact medical training and practice. Begun in 1992 as a project of the Electric Differential Multimedia Laboratory of the Department of Radiology, University of Iowa College of Medicine, the Virtual Hospital is supported in part by an award from the National Library of Medicine (NLM) in association with the National Laboratory for the Study of Rural Medicine. With the aim of strengthening the relationship between practicing physicians and the University of Iowa