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American Botanical Council Website - Come See What's New
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American Botanical Council Website - Come See What's New

If you haven't seen the ABC website, , lately, you're missing a lot of information. What began years ago as a simple introduction to ABC and what we do, now serves as a source of news, herbal education, and a membership interface.

Since the introduction of ABC membership in 2001, people have been able to join ABC on the website via secure online ordering. Now members may renew memberships, edit contact information, and change usernames and passwords. When members log in with their username and password, they are now greeted by name and reminded when it is time to renew.

As part of our mission to provide relevant education and reliable, science-based information, we expanded the news section outside of the members-only areas. The ABC homepage features our latest press releases, as well as links to an archive of all press releases. We also added the option to view free samples of HerbClip™ and educational monographs that are salient to certain news items (e.g., Selected Herbal Therapies for Menopausal Symptoms).

A number of HerbalGram departments have been added to the news category, including World and Research News, Legal and Regulatory information, and Organization News. We continue to maintain a calendar of worldwide events, as well as appearances by ABC Founder and Executive Director Mark Blumenthal. These sections will further evolve based on feedback and suggestions on how they can be improved.

Almost all of the information produced by ABC has been converted into a searchable online format and some is password-protected for members to access. Many members requested simpler navigation and a more comprehensive search engine to include all of ABC's resources for herbal information. We're well on our way to accommodating these requests with new features, including:

direct access from the home page to HerbalGram, HerbClip Online, educational monographs, ABC's Botanical Booklet Series, and the Herb Reference Guide;

more samples of our herbal information for potential members to review before joining ABC;

an HerbClip news page;

improved links to the Herbal Education Catalog;

electronic versions of HerbalGram in a usable format that can be viewed by department, keyword, author name, or issue number;

HerbMedPro™, a new benefit for members at the Academic level and above, is a searchable source for more scientific information about herbs.

Later this year, ABC will expand online content, and encourage more frequent visits to the ABC website. Other plans include quick online surveys to elicit feedback from members, reviews of books and articles, an online newsletter, more basic herbal education information, and frequently asked questions. By delivering these kinds of features, ABC can create a richer experience for members, the news media, and other visitors.

So, if you haven't taken a look at the website lately, check it out. If you're not sure how to log on to the members-only section or wish to license website content, call 800/373-7105 or email <the American Botanical Council>.

-Barbara Springer