12 mobile apps to help you automate your practice

In the medical field, time is of the essence―often split between patient care, being on call and managing your practice.

Here are twelve apps we’ve seen that could help you put some of those day-to-day tasks on autopilot and spend more time doing what you love:

 

  1. Case

Called the “the Netflix of medical journal apps”, Case scans medical journals and YouTube to find you the information you need based on your search and specialty.

The app supports 81 medical specialties and uses machine learning (its algorithm is based on Google Tensorflow) to surface new articles based on what you enjoyed reading in the past. Subscribe to a specialty or set of journals, follow over 100,000 keywords, and Case will take care of the rest.

Compatibility: iOS and Android. Search "Case Medical Research" in the app store.

Price: Free, but may require a subscription to other journals in some cases.

 

  1. Dr. Bill

Skip the paperwork and focus on your patients. Billing isn’t just a complex, time-sucking task. It can be a financial burden on your practice, too. The average physician in Canada fails to bill for at least 5% of the insured services they provide.

With Dr. Bill on your smartphone, you can snap pictures of your patient data and log claims in under 30 seconds. No more day sheets!

Compatibility: iOS and Android. Available in British Columbia, Ontario, and soon to be in Alberta

Price: App free, subscription required after free trial. View pricing plan options here. 

 

  1. DynaMed Plus

DynaMed Plus® is a point-of-care reference tool with precise search results, concise overviews and detailed recommendations. The tool, which is updated daily, has more than 4,800 medical graphics and images, including 1,000+ images from the American College of Physicians. Explore expanded specialty content and access drug information from Micromedex.

Compatibility: iOS and Android.

Price: $399 USD per year, or included with the cost of CMA membership.

 

  1. Epocrates

With millions of downloads, Epocrates is one of the leading medical reference apps on the market. The free version can help you find other providers for consults and referrals, search drug information and interaction, identify a pill based on its imprint code and access a database of clinical practice guidelines.

Premium features include disease information, alternative medicine, ICD-10 and CPT codes, lab and diagnostic treatment, and infectious disease treatment.

Compatibility: iOS and Android.

Price: Free. The premium version costs $174.99 USD per year.

 

  1. Figure 1

Stumped by a rare condition? Use crowdsourcing to assist your research. Figure 1 lets you (and hundreds of thousands of other users) submit, view, share, comment on and search through images of rare conditions in its huge visual database. Ensuring patient privacy with face-blocking technology and the removal of identifying information from all images, the app is a quick way to get feedback on rare and textbook cases. Please note: not all app users are physicians.

Compatibility: iOS and Android.

Price: Free.

 

  1. Medscape

Medscape is a leading medical resource most used by physicians and other health care professionals. Users have the ability to tailor the newsfeed to their specialty for quick access to relevant information. The Medscape app is free, and gives users access to medical news, drug and disease information, medical calculators and continuing medical education information.

Compatibility: iOS and Android.

Price: Free.

 

  1. Relax Melodies

Even in a busy hospital setting, as physicians, it’s critical to take care of yourself so you can take care of others and avoid burnout. Although Relax Melodies was initially developed to help insomniacs, we know a few on-call doctors who could sleep better. The app lets you pick and choose your own combination of relaxing nature sounds, songs, and melodies—whatever you need to help you doze off. And for those in-between moments when a nap isn’t feasible, the app also has a collection mindful meditations to put your mind at rest.

Compatibility: iOS and Android.

Price: $19.99 USD for lifetime access; $9.99 USD per month.

 

  1. RxTx Mobile (Canadian Pharmacists Association)

The RxTx is Health Canada approved and has Health Canada advisories through their app. This tool offers more than 2,000 fully bilingual Canadian product monographs and images for drugs, vaccines and natural health products.

Compatibility: iOS and Android

Price: App is free, subscription is required. The annual subscription costs $239-$799, or access to the CPS and Drug Choices (DC) included with CMA membership.

 

  1. UpToDate

This point-of-care tool allows physicians to reference drugs and drug interactions, review full-text articles and use medical calculators, all from the bedside with their UpToDate app.

Compatibility: iOS and Android.

Price: App is free, subscription required. $519.00 USD for physicians. Discount available for CMA members.

 

  1. Visual anatomy

For a skeleton in your pocket, download Visual Anatomy. This app is especially helpful for medical students and residents who are learning about human anatomy. View 3D muscles, bones and organs of the human body in both landscape and portrait.

Compatibility: iOS and Android.

Price: Lite version is free, full version is $3.99 in iOS and $2.89 for Android.

 

  1. Visual DX

Visual DX helps you with diagnostic visual decision support using real patient images. Search a diagnosis to access clinical information and 90,000 medical images―reviewed and confirmed by leading physician experts―including skin infectious, immunologic, metabolic, nutritional, psychiatric and genetic diseases.  It’s as easy as searching a diagnosis to access images and clinical information, helpful both for diagnosing patients as well as for choosing the best course of treatment.

Compatibility: iOS and Android

Price: App is free, subscription required and costs $400 USD per year.

 

  1. drawMD [discontinued since publishing date]

Help your patients better understand their diagnosis or medical procedure with drawMD. Explaining medical procedures to patients can improve their health literacy, and go a long way to reducing stress.

With interactive and high-quality images, build and save slides to explain medical conditions and surgical procedures with a helpful visual aid. The app includes visual diagrams for nine major specialties, most of which are related to emergency and surgical care.

Compatibility: iOS and Android.

Price: Free.

 

Do you use any apps in your practice? If so, let us know on Twitter!

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Note: last edited September 26, 2019, to reflect changes in app store and cost corrections.

This material is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice and should not be relied on as health or personal advice. The opinions stated by the authors are made in a personal capacity and do not necessarily reflect those of the Canadian Medical Association and its subsidiaries including Joule.  Feel passionate about physician-led innovation? Please connect with us at jouleinquiries@cma.ca.

About the author

Courtney Lester

Courtney L. is the lead writer at Dr. Bill (a medical billing app) that lets you skip the paperwork, boost productivity & earn more. If at any time you’d like to reach out or ask for more information on specific topics, don’t hesitate to contact her at courtney@dr-bill.ca, or check out the Ultimate OHIP Billing Guide.

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