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Informed Pocket Guides for the iPhone

Informed Pocket Guide
I discovered Informed Pocket Guides almost two years ago and have been a huge fan ever since. The first product I got was the Emergency & Critical Care Pocket Guide. I believe the fact that I take extra care this little/big guide is always in my bag when I go to work, says it all. It is small, light and compact, yet it has all the necessary reference information you might need in medical emergencies. It is especially useful if you work in the field.
Informed Pocket Guide pages
Emergency & Critical Care Pocket Guide has almost 200 pages and covers the following topics:

  • Current ACLS Algorithms, Lab Values, Metrics, Notes
  • Emergency, ACLS Drugs & Top Prescription Drugs
  • IV Drips, Drug Infusions, Dosages
  • Poisons & Overdose / ‘Rave’ Drug
  • 12-Lead ECG Section & Acute MI
  • Medical Emergencies Section
  • Quick EMS Spanish Translations
  • Fibrinolytics for AMI & Stroke / CVA
  • Childbirth, Diabetic, Respiratory Distress
  • Pediatric Resuscitation, Drug Doses, Vitals
  • Trauma, Triage, MCI, Glasgow Coma Scales
  • Airway Management /RSI
  • Burn Charts, the ‘Rule of 9s’
  • Pulse Oximetry
  • Infectious Diseases

Well, ever since the first iPhone medical apps started appearing, I thought to myself… hmmm I would love to have my medical pocket guides on this great device. Obviously, it was just a matter of time when Informed would port them to this mobile platform, and yes they are here! The complete series of Informed Medical Pocket Guides are now available for the iPhone and iPod touch. Titles like the RN Pocket Guide™, EMS Field Guide® BLS & ALS edition, NIMS: Incident Command System Field Guide™, and of course the Emergency & Critical Care Pocket Guide™ are available for $9,99 USD via the iTunes store. In fact the Emergency & Critical Care Pocket Guide app has just recently been updated with many improvements, so now is the best time to present it to you.

Informed Pocket Guide and app
If we take a look at the content, the app is the same as the pocket guide. The basic difference is that on one side you have a physical pocket guide, and on the other an application for your iPhone. Now, bringing the guide to the iPhone has some advantages and some disadvantages. First of all, you no longer have to worry about forgetting the pocket guide. You have all the same information available on your mobile phone, which you carry everyday and everywhere you go. This all makes perfect sense, since the iPhone is by itself a great mobile phone for doctors and other medical workers. So having another great medical app running on it just makes it even more powerful. Furthermore, you can do things with the app which are impossible or difficult to do with the pocket guide. One such thing, and maybe the most important one, is finding information quickly. The pocket guide is not an encyclopedia, but still it has a lot of dense information on small pages, so finding exactly what you need can prove to be difficult. Sometimes I just know that I have seen a piece of information or a chart in the guide, but cannot find it unless I flip thru numerous pages. The app is the champion in this area. It is very easy to find information you need thanks to the great built in search function, but also other navigation features like the possibility to flick thru pages, go to a specific page, browse the table of contents and see thumbnails of pages. Other interesting features include bookmarks and notes which again are there to make the data you need and often use more accessible. On the down side, the iPhone screen is a little bit smaller that the pages of the pocket guide. Maybe this could be a problem for some, even though the resolution is high so you can simply zoom in and see all the details. Also, you might not like the idea of bringing your iPhone with you in the field out of the fear it might get damaged or other reasons. I also found that sometimes its touch screen does not work flawlessly if I wear protective gloves.

Here are some of the photos of the Emergency & Critical Care app and the pocket guide:

Both the pocket guide and the app have things going for them, so you will have to choose which one better suites your work flow and style. I like them both so much and cannot decide. It seams that the pocket guide will remain in my bag and the app on my iPhone. I am really looking forward to new updates of the app, and hope that in the future it will incorporate more interactive content, so it could maybe replace some of the other apps I have installed on my iPhone, like various medical calculators.


Way To Go George & George

George Ure
I want to tell you a story about a father and his son. George senior and junior, obviously not Bush because this is a happy story :), but Ure. My friend George Ure jr. lives in Seattle and works as an emergency medical technician. His father on the other hand lives in Palestine, Texas. Not long ago a resident of this small town died after an accidental electrocution. Unfortunately, first responders who rushed to help were not equipped with a defibrillator, which in this case might have saved a life. George senior decided to do something about it, so he raised money and bought two automated external defibrillators (AED) for the local Fire Department. George junior then flew from Washington to teach fireman how to use these devices and hopefully save some lives in the future.

Way to go father and son!

I am proud to be your friend.

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‘Medical Video Games’ Provide Great Training for Healthcare Professionals

DENA WHITE is a freelance writer and covers topics such as nurse assistant and medical careers, health care topics, and more.

Just a quick search on the Internet and you can see some great screenshots from the video game Zero Hour. Zero Hour is a fantastic video game that has you playing as an EMT who must respond to catastrophes such as a biological weapons attack in a major US city. You have to treat and diagnose panic-stricken patients as well as manage supplies, which are disorganized and unpredictable.

The United States Department of Homeland Security created this game in some measure as a way of training responders for emergencies in real life situations. This is the perfect example of interactive virtual reality modernizing the way professionals are taught and trained.

The days when video games were seen as nothing more than tools to promote passive learning and aggressive behavior are fading fast. Video games with real world learning applications are exploding on the scene and leaving critics around the globe in a state of astonishment.

A New Way To Learn

Innovative education using specially designed or off-the-shelf video games are sweeping the fields of healthcare, education, business and government. The primary focus is on healthcare partially due to the fact that the payoffs are immediate. When it comes to meeting health care goals, many have found that one of the most cost-effective methods for training healthcare professionals is video games that simulate real-life events.

The most popular games include those based on biofeedback that teach the players how to lower biological stress signs as well as games that teach healthcare professionals how to manage individuals who suffer from various phobias, asthma, heart disease and diabetes. Other games focus on simulated exercises. One video game connects to a bicycle and allows players to race through the streets of the big cities.

Educating With Games

The educational theory that is emerging around video games comes from research indicating that a new kind of learning called information literacy has spawned from the Internet. This is different from traditional learning through reading books and attending lectures. This is a more interactive way to learn using computers.

Experts claim that video games have several benefits that aid learning:

  • Video games stimulate prior education. Players have to use information that they learned previously in order to advance to the higher levels of the game.
  • Players receive immediate feedback by way of scoring as well as auditory and visual stimulus that lets players modify learning techniques.

  • Transfer of skills from video games to reality is likely to occur.

  • Motivation to learn about new tasks and ideas are higher for most when they play video games.

Video games are often used as a last resort when other forms of therapy fail in the treatment of hyperactive children who need help focusing their attention. Research is taking place to determine how such games work and the ways that they can be used to complement other therapies. In addition, experts are studying ways for video games to aid in reaching healthcare goals as a less expensive alternative to traditional, more expensive treatments. The effect of video games on the healthcare industry is an area that researchers have just begun to explore.