We live in the information age. Data are at our fingertips, but efficiently locating the relevant and important data is the trick. Time spent foraging for information is time wasted. And time is inevitably something that we as human beings are always lacking. The apps suggested below are designed to help you be more efficient and are all available for both iOS and Android mobile devices.
Resources for the resourceful.
Having information readily available provides you with a means to quickly reference source material, complete tasks in a timely fashion, and ultimately better your day-to-day efficiency.
Epocrates, Inc has developed several software applications, Epocrates [iOS] [Android] and Epocrates CME [iOS] [Android] are just two of the many that are available. The Epocrates mobile application itself is free, but requires a subscription in order to access the resources for news, research information, diagnostic tools, prescription drug information, and more.
Epocrates CME powered by RealCME provides a means of earning continuing medical education (CME) credits on the go with a wide variety of activities and specialty topics. These activities are accredited by the American Medical Association, Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education, American Nurses Credentialing Center, and others.
Truven Health Analytics Inc. has developed the Micromedex Drug Information app [iOS] [Android]. This app provides detailed drug information to better your treatment options. It supplies a bevy of search terms (over 4,500+) to help you locate the desired material.
Below are just a few
- Generic names, including selected combination products
- Common trade names
- Therapeutic classes
- Black box warnings
- Dosage, adult
- Dosage, pediatric
- Dose adjustments
- Indications (differentiated as “FDA labeled” and “non-FDA labeled”)
Similar in scope to the Epocrates app, but more widely recognized in the space, is Medscape [iOS] [Android], published by WebMD. The premise of Medscape is to provide a centralized resource that supplies breaking news, drug information, accredited CME/CE courses across 30 specialties and more. Medscape has no additional costs associated with its use, as every feature is available for free within the app.
Sharing is caring.
Within the last few years we have seen a push from the medical community to share information with colleagues. Efficiently sharing this information means less time rummaging through resource articles and searching for PDFs on a workstation. This information can be made available and easily accessible using your mobile device.
Box [iOS] [Android], a cloud-based storage solution is just one of the many tools offering the flexibility needed while handling your day-to-day affairs such as sharing grand rounds information, medical literature, PDF’s, procedures and more. Offering free and paid storage solutions, Box, provides the ability to manage, edit and share information via your desktop, smartphone or tablet. Changes are immediately made available to all of your devices and those of your colleagues. Another strong point for Box is that it is both HIPAA and HITECH compliant. Other storage solutions such as Dropbox, SkyDrive, and JustCloud, are not. This means that any potential patient data could be at risk, as those services cannot guarantee secure access to your stored information.
Search giant and Internet advertising monster, Google, has also certified some of their apps (Gmail, Drive, Docs, and Calendar), specifically the paid versions, for HIPAA compliance. Google Drive [iOS] [Android] offers tiered storage plans, and in a similar fashion to Box, the ability to create, edit, store, and share documents, music, photos and the like.
Delving even further into the aspect of sharing information, some in the medical community have felt that creating a blog is a great way to express their opinions, experiences, and knowledge. Having access to these sites can prove useful and there are a variety of apps that can be used to make your favorite blogs, news articles, podcasts, and more within hands reach.
The Feedly Team, creators of Feedly [iOS] [Android] have created an app that utilizes RSS to pull feeds that interest you, whether they are informative or entertaining in nature. Feedly is one of, if not, the most popular RSS readers available. The interface is both well designed and intuitive, giving you plenty of options for viewing articles, a simplified content browser to navigate the categories that fit your needs, and more features being added with every release. Using Feedly is also a great way to share the content you are perusing with others as well.
An alternative to Feedly is NewsBlur. NewsBlur [iOS] [Android] is available for free with a limit of 64 news feeds, or $2.00 a month for an unlimited number of newsfeeds. The interface is very highly organized and shows a lot of fit and finish. The team at NewsBlur have been continuingly improving the application as there were some reliability issues early on. However, with every major release it’s getting considerably better and more stable.
- Box HIPAA and HITECH overview and FAQs. Box website. https://support.box.com/entries/22515768-Box-HIPAA-and-HITECH-Overview-and-FAQs.
- Gordon W. Google Reader is shutting down; here are the best alternatives. Lifehacker website. June 25, 2013. http://lifehacker.com/google-reader-is-shutting-down-here-are-the-best-alter-5990456.
- HIPAA compliance with Google apps. Google Support website. https://support.google.com/a/answer/3407054?hl=en.
- Huggins R. Google and HIPAA Compliance: Gmail, Drive and Calendar Now Accessible For Health Care Professionals. Person-Centered Tech website. November 18, 2013.http://www.personcenteredtech.com/2013/11/google-and-hipaa-compliance-gmail-drive-and-calendar-now-accessible-for-health-care-professionals/.
- Husain, I, Misra S. The 20 best free iPhone medical apps for healthcare professionals, edition 3. iMedical Apps website.June 19, 2013. http://www.imedicalapps.com/2013/06/free-iphone-medical-apps-physicians/.
- McMillan R. Doctors supercharge their iPads with Box.com. Wired website. February 27, 2013. http://www.wired.com/wiredenterprise/2013/02/cloud-doctors/.
- RSS readers for the iPad – get the latest scoop with RSS on your iPad. App Advice website. http://appadvice.com/appguides/show/rss-readers-for-the-ipad