Discover the top virtual care industry and user-friendly applications today.
Virtual care is a method of treating patients suffering from routine healthcare issues using written, audio, or video communication. It can also be referred to as virtual visits with the use of communication devices held by patients and healthcare professionals located in different places. It can either be in the form of meetings, consultation regarding regular health issues consultation, etc. The term “virtual” means real-time virtualized meetings between patients and doctors from any location.
What Application is most User Friendly for Clinicians and Patients?
This app can retrieve healthcare-related news from the Internet to provide physicians with accurate and timely information on all the clinical topics. Its database comprises reference information on over 8,000 OTC and supplements, prescription drugs, and herbals alongside a checker for drug interaction and a pill identifier.
The development of smartphone with downloadable function and wireless network access is comparable to computers. Numerous medical applications (apps) are available for smartphones to download and assist health care professionals (HCPs) in many aspects of clinical practice, like Epocrates, PEPID, UpToDate, Medscape, Doximity, etc. Some apps are free download to use, some apps are required yearly payments for fully information access; some apps are designed for educational purpose, some are created as a communication tool. The purpose of this essay is to introduce free Medscape smartphone app and highlight the benefits in clinical practice. Medscape app for smartphone by WebMD is offered through Apple iOS and Google Android. Medscape has been recognized as a leading medical reference tool for all different levels HCPs, from specialists, primary care physicians, nurse practitioners (NP), medical students, nurses, etc. Medscape app has been benefitted on point of care use, medical education, and patient education for HCPs. HCPs can download free app on their phones and quickly look up drug information, locate the disease reference tool, stay with the latest medical news, access clinical practice guidelines on-the-go, and more. The important part of role of NP is teaching individuals and their families on health maintaining and disease prevention, beside diagnosing and treating patients. It is crucial for NP to understand apps correctly and effectively utilize in clinical practice.
Under the rapid ever-growing of technology and powerful technological transformation, informatics becomes a specialty which has been widely integrated into the healthcare system and environment. Many impressive technologies and practical tools have been invented to support health care and enhance patients’ safety for the best practice, such as CPOE, EMR, EHR, BCMA. Numerous medical apps are available for smartphone to download and assist health care professionals (HCPs) in many aspects of clinical practice, like Epocrates, PEPID, UpToDate, Medscape, Doximity, etc. Some apps are free download to use, some apps are required yearly payments for fully access. PR Newswire (May 28, 2015) described Medscape as “the leading source of clinical news, health information, and point-of-care tools and medical education” for HCPs on the commemoration of Medscape’s 20th anniversary. Medscape apps offers HCPs the most vigorous ad comprehensive medical and educational information at fingertips. How smartphone app benefits clinicians?
Smartphone Technology in Healthcare
Small smartphones are always on and can be carried every day, it becomes the most convenience and easiest source of accessing health information, which forms the essential communication tool for HCPs. Widespread using smartphone with advance technology by HCPs has transformed many aspects in healthcare practice. A smartphone is a mobile phone with more advanced features and greater computing capacity. Currently the majority smartphones’ operating systems, are Apple iOS or Google Android with wireless network access technology
and powerful processers, which can compare to computers. Ventola (2014) indicated the advance features of smartphone including web searching, global positioning systems (GPS), high quality video and audio recording with large memory capacity. Smartphone has combined communication tool and computer together into a handheld single device which can be placed in a pocket and easily access at the point of care by HCPs (p.356). Apps are applications can be simply downloaded onto a smartphone or other mobile device, Golden (2015) addressed apps are useful at the point of care in healthcare environment, including supporting patient on health and wellness management, obtaining handy helpful information at fingertips, and guiding patients to the most recent information at the point of care (p.1062). Fast development of medical apps and downloadable feature make smartphones as common tools for both professional and personal use in health care setting.
Medical apps have been assisted HCPs with different tasks, including at the point of care, treatment planning, documentation, interaction and cooperation of interprofessional heath care teams, as well as research and education (McGonigle & Mastrian, 2018, p.61). Among over 10,000 apps for HCPs, the most top apps chose by HCPs provide educational knowledge for point of care which includes integration of diseases and treatments, as well as drug tools; the second ranked apps used by HCPs support teaching patient on specific conditions (Golden, 2015, p.1063). Medscape app is a free medical app developed WebMD, which meets the criteria of top ranking apps and is available for Apple iOS and Google Android users. Medscape has been recognized as a leading medical reference tool for all different levels HCPs, from specialists, primary care physicians, nurse practitioners (NP), medical students, nurses, etc.
Medscape Smartphone App
Phillips & Thornbory (2014) reviewed Medscape as a free downloadable medical app through Apple Store or Google Play which provides the most up-to-date clinical information for health professionals. Medscape app has been utilized by more than half physicians and three out of four medical students in the United States (p.28). A simple registration is required to access enormous array of medical information in the app. On Medscape smartphone app home screen, Medscape Today provides the top news and perspectives from across medicine and earns CME all in one place; multiple tabs provide easy access valuable information of drugs & diseases, including drugs, conditions, procedures, drug interaction checker, latest clinical guidelines, pill identifier, calculators, etc.
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