Smartphone and tablet apps can clutter your screen and bombard you with unnecessary notifications—or they can make your life as a nurse much easier and less stressful. But with literally millions of apps available, how can you tell which ones are winners and which are total duds?
Luckily for you, we’ve done all the research for you and rounded up 13 apps that nurses should download today.
Ever have the name of a disease on the tip of your tongue, but couldn’t actually remember the term? Eponyms is for those moments. The app contains 1,800 common and obscure medical terms and offers full text search as well as 26 categories you can browse. Plus, you can star any eponyms you constantly forget for easy reference and use the “learn” mode to teach yourself new terms.
#2. Medical Spanish
If you don’t speak Spanish, then this app can help you learn relevant medical terms and/or communicate with patients who do. The app includes over 6,000 entries over multiple categories such as subjective/questions, objective/instructions, assessment and plan and basic Spanish. As a bonus, the app does not require Wi-Fi and works offline.
#3. MediBabble Translator
For those nurses who need to translate more languages beyond Spanish, MediBabble is a free, professional-grade medical translation tool that is currently available in five languages—Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin, Russian and Haitian Creole—with more coming soon. Spanish comes preinstalled and the other languages can be downloaded inside the app for free.
#4. NCLEX Flashcards
This app helps nurses-to-be study for all aspects of the National Council Licensure Examination test: Safe and Effective Care Environment, Health Promotion and Maintenance, Psychosocial Integrity, Physiological Integrity and General Review. The app also offers five different learning modes—Study, Slide Show, Matching, Memorize and Quiz—to help you learn the 2,400 flashcards loaded on the app.
#5. Skyscape Medical Library
Skyscape has partnered with more than 35 publishers to offer more than 400 “greatest hits” pieces of content from the most trusted medical resources. The free base version of the app includes Skyscape Rx (comprehensive information on thousands of brands and generics), Skyscape Clinical Calculator (medical calculator with more than 200 interactive tools), Skyscape Clinical Consult (evidence-based clinical information on hundreds of diseases and symptom-related topics) and Skyscape MedBeats™ (news and information tailored to your specialty). Other premium pieces of content are available for in-app purchase.
#6. Pill Identifier
Drugs.com’s searchable database comes in app form, covering more than 24,000 Rx/OTC medications found in the U.S. You can search by imprint, drug name, shape and color, and the app will return information including drug images, description/indication, pregnancy category, CSA schedule, strength and Rx/OTC availability.
#7. Nursing Central
Don’t be fooled by the old school icon. This app gets rave reviews from nurses everywhere. As the name suggests, Nursing Central combines five best-selling resources (Davis’s Drug Guide, Taber’s Medical Dictionary, Davis’s Laboratory and Diagnostic Tests, Diseases and Disorders and Prime PubMed) all in one app. It’s an efficient, easy-to-use, one-stop-shop for many of the most common questions that nurses have.
#8. Taber’s Medical Dictionary
Speaking of Taber’s Medical Dictionary, this resource also comes as a standalone and is worth highlighting on its own merits. Taber’s contains over 65,000 terms, 1,200 photos, 32,000 audio pronunciations, 100+ videos and more than 600 patient care statements. The app also goes beyond definitions, providing nutrition and alternative therapy, medical abbreviations, symbols and units of measurement, immunization schedules, nursing diagnoses and updates.
#9. Nurse’s Pocket Guide
Nurse’s Pocket Guide provides all the information you need to look up the signs and symptoms of medical conditions, identify the associated nursing diagnoses and develop appropriate plans of care. The latest version of the app includes updated NANDA-I 2015-2017 diagnoses as well as NIC/NOC classifications. The app can be downloaded to your device and then used offline, so you can reference it even when you don’t have an internet connection.
The classic medical information website for clinicians can also be downloaded to your phone in app form. The app allows you to look up medications and dosages with the Drug Reference Tool, research adverse drug combinations with the Drug Interaction Checker and find evidence-based patient care information with the Disease & Condition reference. The Medscape app also offers the latest medical news as well as other helpful resources, including step-by-step procedural articles, medical calculators, a pill ID tool, image collections, formulary information and more.
PEPID has provided clinical and drug information to healthcare providers, hospitals and schools for more than 23 years. The company’s app combines information about drug interactions and allergies, medical calculators, a pill identifier, a note-taking function and more into a tool that one reviewer said “you’ll use as much as your stethoscope.”
#12. Med Mnemonics
A mnemonic is a short rhyme, phrase or other mental technique that makes information easier to memorize. This app comes with more than 1,900 mnemonics to help you learn terms, symptoms and more, and it also includes the ability to add your own mnemonics to your personal version of the app. You can even submit your own mnemonics for potential inclusion in the next version of the app.
Nurses are notorious for their complicated, shift-based schedules, which is why a couple of RNs created NurseGrid, the first calendar just for nurses. The app lets you easily add shifts, share your availability with your manager, sync with your favorite external calendar, swap shifts with colleagues, add shifts from up to eight different work sites and message both individuals and groups within the app itself.
If managing your schedule feels like a job in itself, NurseGrid can make things way easier on you and help remove some of the headache. From translation to dictionary references to calendars, these 13 apps cover a wide range of resources that nurses rely on every day. As a nurse, you’ve already got enough on your plate to juggle, so let these apps help you make your life easier. You deserve it!
Additional Recommended Reading:
- Unique Careers Within Nursing
- Different Types Of Nursing And Nursing Specialties
- Nurse Burnout: How Administration Can Help
- Nurse Health: Self Care For 12 Hour Shifts
HEY NURSES! Remember to sign up for your FREE COPY of “The Nurse’s Guide To Health & Self Care” E-book in the sign up box below! (scroll down)
Deborah Swanson is a Coordinator for the Real Caregivers Program at allheart.com, a site dedicated to celebrating medical professionals and their journeys. She keeps busy interviewing caregivers and writing about them and loves gardening.
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