There are numerous apps available on the iPhone for pharmacists and pharmacy students. Unlike some of the more widely accessible and popular apps available, some of these tend to be a bit more expensive. While the higher price is a reflection of the amount of information available in these apps and should not dissuade you from exploring the apps and considering their ability to help you in your day-to-day practice, some of the free or inexpensive apps are also valuable assets to consider.
MecCalc was created by Mathias Tschopp and Pascal Pfiffner. This app provides medical formulas, scales, scores, and classifications. The display is designed for the small screen of the iPhone so all information is visible with limited scrolling. This app is completely free, and while the list is not exhaustive, it is substantial.
Lexicomp offers a 30-day free trial of any for any of their apps. After the trial period is over the, the purchase price of the apps vary from about $100 to a little more than $500. Among the products available are the comprehensive Lexi-Drugs database, the interactive database Lexi-Interact, and a variety of specialty apps for specific conditions and patient populations.
Epocrates is a popular drug reference program for healthcare providers, but is also beneficial for pharmacists because of the available information for each medication. Pictures of the medications, warnings, drug interactions, calculations, and formulary information are available. There is a free and a premium edition available.
Vaccines, by MarketWall.com, shows the recommended immunization schedules for adults, children, and adolescents, and is updated with the CDC’s recommendations. It also includes information about catching children up who have missed specific vaccines, as well as adult recommendations based on medical conditions. This can be useful for patients who have questions about vaccines their children have had in conjunction with medications they may have been prescribed or reactions the child may be having.
Skyscape has hundreds of apps for medical professionals, and among them, you will find dozens of clinical and drug references. There is a wide range in prices; some products are free, and a few are more than $100, but most of them fall somewhere in between. There are apps on virtually every subject, including poisoning and drug overdose, psychopharmacology, herb and dietary supplements, oncology drug reference, veterinary drugs, cancer drugs, drug calculations, and a variety of dictionaries, exam resources, and coding resources.
Do you absolutely need any of these apps to be a good pharmacist? Of course not. All of the information is available in texts, computer programs, or from experience. However, many of these are handy and a good way to quickly reference information. One of the things the iPhone and its apps do well is make information easily accessible. If you have an iPhone, you are likely already enamored with this capability. Check out the various apps listed above and decide for yourself if they deserve space in your iPhone and a place in your practice.
Would you use an iPhone app to supplement your knowledge? If so, do you have a favorite app?