e-TALC is a project of Teaching-aids At Low Cost (TALC) which aims to bridge the digital divide in health by disseminating up-to-date, high quality health information on CD-ROMs free to health care workers in developing countries.

TALC was set up in 1965 with the aim of breaking the cycle of poverty and ill-health in the developing world by advancing medical knowledge and education through provision of low-cost educational and training materials. Since its inception, over 12 million books, slides and accessories have been distributed to thousands of health workers throughout the developing world.

Whilst health professionals in developed countries take acccess to online resources for granted health workers in the developing world still have many difficulties in accessing the internet due to poor infrastructure and cost of connectivity. The effect of this 'digital divide' on the dissemination of health information only serves to reinforce the disparity between health care provision in the developed and developing world.

The e-TALC project

e-TALC uses CD-ROMs to distribute large quantities of high quality and relevant electronic health information free to healthcare workers in developing countries. The e-TALC project was initiated in 2001 and since then we have produced twelve issues of the e-TALC CD-ROM and distributed over 70,000 disks to countries across the developing world.

Why CD-ROMs?

CD-ROMs are the ideal method of disseminating electronic health information to health professionals in the developing world who have no acccess to the internet. CD-ROMs are cheap to produce and post, they can hold thousands of pages of information and can be used on almost any computer.

What does an e-TALC CD-ROM include?

A variety of electronic resources are included on the e-TALC CD-ROM including journals, books, newsletters and interactive educational content. These resources are donated by a variety of NGOs, publishers and individuals involved in health and development in developing countries. The resources are sorted and chosen for inclusion on future issues of e-TALC by our expert editorial board who make their selection based on the relevance of the resource to health care workers in resource-poor settings.

Some of the organisations who regularly contribute material to e-TALC include:

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