The organization of the information in VHL gathers and structures the information sources according to the nature and specific features of each one of them, resulting in virtual shelves of the library, which brings together the different collections.

The adoption of a standard organization by all instances of the network creates a common language that facilitates the identification, operation, recovery and association among the different sources of information. The classification of information sources according to a typology is also a relevant factor for the establishment of cooperation between institutions, because it is used both for defining the division of responsibilities as for the integrated operation.

The scope of information sources in the VHL enlarges the composition of the traditional collections of libraries, allowing the inclusion and interoperation of scientific literature with collections of other kinds, as full online texts, scientific evidences – in the form of systematic reviews, technological evaluations, multimedia, instruction policies – learning objects, collaborative spaces and factual information – as the directories of institutions and events, news websites and blogs. The information sources of the VHL are organized and classified into six types: 1) secondary sources, 2) primary sources, 3) tertiary sources, 4) informational inclusion and dissemination services, 5) communication and collaboration 6) Integration components.

1) Primary Sources: are those related with the products originated by scientific research – scientific articles, theses, essays, monographic documents, governmental or from international organizations, congress annals, legislation and non-conventional documents – such as the research reports that constitute the gray literature – published in full text by electronic means. It also includes numerical databases of research and statistical census. Examples: SciELO collections and institutional repositories of full texts.

2) Secondary sources: they are records of reference from primary sources systematized in indexes, referential databases and directories. The databases that adopt the LILACS methodology and the directories of researchers, institutions and projects are examples of secondary sources in the VHL.

3) Tertiary sources: they refer to contents organized for instructive purposes, such as learning objects of the Virtual Campus in Public Health and as support to decision making, such as systematic reviews of scientific evidence. Example: Cochrane Library .

4) Informational inclusion and dissemination services: a set of services of informational inclusion and promotion of VHL access, both to users connected to the internet as communities without connection, for example, the installation of collective and public spaces such as VHL Stations – (see item Dissemination and Promotion). Also include update services and user service, such as the service of bibliographic commutation SCAD (Document Access Cooperative Service) and the services of personalized access, such as “my library”, seeking to satisfy the needs for information of each user individually.

5) Communication and Collaboration: information sources oriented to socialization of information and the exchange of knowledge through online collaboration. Examples: Newsletter / VHL News Network VHL Collaborative Spaces, blogs, bulletins, forums, online meetings, chats and virtual communities.

6) Integration components: norms, standards, methodologies and common applications adopted through all instances of VHL for its integration into a single network. Include the terminologies, for example, the Health Sciences Descriptors (DeCS), manuals and software for the management and operation of sources and information flow in the VHL.

This typology represents a notable advance in relation to the traditional collections of libraries based almost exclusively on scientific literature. Thus, VHL meets widely, through the development of products, services and events of information, the needs for information of geographic and thematic instances. With this objective a set of methodologies and applications covers the information sources of the VHL model. Described as follow.