The Manhattan Research company claims that there are approximately 1,500 apps just for healthcare professionals. By comparison to the previous year, the number of doctors with smart phones increased by 64 percent in 2009. The number of physicians with iPhones doubled in the same year. It projects that 81 percent of doctors will have installed medical apps on their smartphones by 2012. Every day, numerous useful medical mobile apps leave the virtual iTunes shelf, thriving this market. The health care industry and even health insurance brokers are constantly in awe of the innovative and useful apps that are available. It is important to note that the FDA does not regulate the majority of these health apps; however, this may soon change. The best mobile applications for doctors and other medical professionals are listed below.

Epocrates Rx is a clinical reference application that gives doctors at the point of care information on drugs, diseases, labs, and drug safety. Alongside the drug image, the mobile app displays a variety of information, such as directions, side effects, and so on. The multicheck feature, which enables the software to provide information on the adverse effects of a patient’s drug cocktail’s interactions, is a novel feature. The ability of the medical mobile app to identify the medication based on the doctor’s description (for example, color, pill shape, etc.) is another feature. Additionally, Epocrates provides a CME credits program on the medical iPhone app. With this program, doctors can complete everything from studying to taking exams without having to travel, and all work is saved and tracked through the web app.

Compatibility: Price of Android, iPhone, Palm, Windows Mobile, and Blackberry: There are four available versions, starting with the free Epocrates Rx and going all the way up to Epocrates Essentials Deluxe, which costs $199 for a one-year contract and $299 for a two-year contract. Discounts for groups are available.

Epocrates Rx is similar to Medscape, which is part of WebMD. Medscape, on the other hand, boasts an extensive library of clinical and drug references and adds video to its portfolio of offerings.

Compatibility: Blackberry will soon be available, but for the time being only iPhone Free!

You guessed it: Medcalc is a medical calculator. US and SI units are supported by the mobile app. Formulas for medicine can be computed using the iPhone app. Formulas can be searched for by name or keyword by a doctor or other medical professional. They can look up a list of formulas they’ve seen recently and save favorite equations.

Compatibility: Cost of an iPhone: Free!

A quick reference to common clinical lab test normal values can be found in Medical Lab Tests. It provides a brief overview of more than 100 blood tests. You can use the search and recently viewed features. The US and SI units are used for the reference values.

Compatibility: Cost of an iPhone: $5.99 Dr. Rounds is a health mobile app that stores patient records in a small device that doctors can carry around with them. This tool helps doctors stay on top of their billing so that no patient goes unaccounted for and keeps track of visits, diagnoses, procedures, and services provided. The iPhone app’s goal is to make it easier for doctors to support patients by removing paperwork from their daily rounds and providing advanced features like search, archiving, emailing, and even data sharing.

Compatibility: Cost of an iPhone: Drug Trials costs $24.99 and provides medical professionals with information about disease-related clinical trials. It even opens Google Map to show them where these clinical trials are taking place and lets them bookmark the locations. It also provides criteria for eligibility and even the ability to email.

Compatibility: Cost of an iPhone: Free!

Blausen Human Atlas provides video and imagery in the form of 3D animation to assist physicians in effectively communicating with patients at the point of care. This does exactly that because it is simpler to demonstrate something than to inform someone of it. This mobile application features the following: Physicians can zoom in and out on 3D animation (360 degrees), video, still images, and a searchable medical glossary with links to related animation and images. Unfortunately, the videos, medical glossary, and still images can only be viewed with an internet connection. There are ten different languages available for this app.

Compatibility: Cost of an iPhone: A translation tool called Xprompt Multilingual Assistance costs $19.99 and allows doctors and other medical staff to communicate with patients when a translator is not present or a family member cannot translate. German, English, and Spanish are the pre-installed languages on the mobile app. Gestures, tools for communicating with others, a general dictionary, and other features are available. Phrases can be favorites for health professionals. The iPhone audio displays and speaks translations. Video versions of two sign languages—German and British—are available.

Compatibility: Cost of an iPhone: $3.99 with three pre-installed languages. Additional $2.99 for each language (there are currently 22 languages available, and 50 more are being added). The OB-GYN Airstrip OB is essentially a mobile health monitoring system. More specifically, it is a portable ICU monitor that monitors the mother-to-be and fetus’s waveform data—including heart rate, temperature, blood pressure, and patterns of contractions—in real time throughout a woman’s labor. The mobile phones of the nurse, obstetrician, and gynecologist are connected to the hospital monitoring system. Because of this, the OB-GYN and nurses can monitor the expecting mother from any location at any time. The woman’s current medication, allergies, lab results, and notes are among the additional pieces of information the medical mobile app provides. The patient’s identity is protected because no personal information is stored. This mobile app complies with HIPAA regulations and has been approved by the FDA.

Compatible: Price of Windows Mobile, Blackberry, and iPhone: The Airstrip OB System is free, but the hospital where the doctor works must buy it. About HCP National Insurance Services HCP National is your one-stop shop for all things insurance. Employment risk management, ASO and Stop Loss Insurance, Fully Insured Managed Care Programs, Medical Malpractice E & O and D & O, Reinsurance, Product Liability, BOPs, Workers Compensation, and All Forms of Property and Casualty Insurance are just a few of the insurance options we offer. Please visit HCP National Insurance’s website.

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