In healthcare and in any profession, change for the better must be strived for so as to keep current and promote that little edge. While the days of reading journals and attending conferences are still ongoing to keep abreast with the ever-changing medical world, technology has made it a whole lot simpler.

A mobile phone is a busy person’s best friend in today’s world, storing everything from important dates, meeting schedules to personal music collection. With its status as a daily go-to device, having information right at the fingertips through apps that have been developed specifically for nurses looking to better themselves may not be such a bad idea.

Here is a look at five of those apps:

1. Omnio

The all-in-one app for medical resources, Omnio was designed with the healthcare professional’s workflow in mind. Use it to look through different medications or symptoms and keep updated with the latest medical news. The app is a valuable decision-support tool at the point of care as it caters for answers right away. The best part is having access to the comprehensive medical textbook, the MSD Manuals which is integrated in the app for seamless use.

2. MSD Manuals

Known as the Merck Manuals in the US and Canada and the MSD Manuals in our parts of the world, it is one of the world’s most referred to medical resources since 1899.

But gone are the days of lugging around heavy textbooks for reference. To keep up with the times and not compromising on the need for quality information, this encyclopaedia of medicine is now available in a downloadable app format.

It also offers in-depth articles, photos, illustrations and videos on procedures just as they are available in the textbook and the website, all without the need for internet connection so you can have access to information anywhere, anytime.

3. Skyscape Medical Library

Priding itself on being a mobile library, this app is so much more than that as it offers functions such as clinical references, a drug guide, a medical calculator and news notifications for all the latest emerging data. The app was developed as a medium for all resources used by nurses and healthcare professionals to be made available in one place. This allows for a one-stop search through its impressive resources, some of which are directly from the actual medical publishers.

4. Medscape

Apart from offering a quick and complete reference of drugs, procedures, diseases and conditions, the app is also a news portal, delivering FDA announcements and the latest medical news written by experts in the relevant fields. Even more impressive is the Continuing Medical Education (CME) function, seamlessly integrated into the app so that furthering education for professional development and renewing licenses can all be done in one place.

Scientific directors who work alongside major academic institutions developed the courses on a variety of relevant topics. Medscape, LLC is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.

5. MediBabble Translator and Canopy Speak

These are the apps to go to when a language barrier is present and hinders effective treatment of a patient. When a translator is not present or delayed care is feared, these two similar mobile medical interpretation tools might come in handy. The apps enable communication of basic unidirectional phrases to patients with limited English proficiency in their language by simply tapping on the preloaded audio phrase.

Questions are designed as such that it can be answered with a yes, no or pointing to parts of the body. When the phone is turned sideways in landscape mode, the text is displayed for the patient to read. The apps are meant for English proficient users to communicate with limited English proficiency patients and are available in multiple languages including Mandarin, Cantonese and also Malay for Canopy Speak. MIMS

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