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Best Health Apps for Physicians

We live in a digital age, where most of our actions are carried out via our smartphones. As the world continues to become more health-conscious, consumers are taking advantage of smartphones to manage and improve their own health, but healthcare professionals are also seeing the benefits of mobile health (mHealth) apps geared towards improving their practice. 

  • Epocrates

This is the gold standard of medical apps. With millions of downloads across the country, doctors are using this app to look up drug information and interactions, find other providers for consults and referrals, and quickly calculate patient measurements like BMI.

While the app itself and most of its content is free, access to additional information and functionality (like lab guides, alternative medications, and disease information) requires an in-app purchase of Epocrates Essentials for $159.99 a year.

  • UpToDate

Hundreds of thousands of physicians have installed this app, and for good reason.  It is full of medical knowledge and answers clinical questions at the point of need.

However, it’s also not cheap.  While downloading the app is free, in order to actually access the wealth of information contained within it, you or your organization needs to have a subscription to the UpToDate database. This starts at $499 a year for an individual physician.

  • Doximity

This is the official app for the social network for doctors.  Doximity claims 40% of U.S. Physicians are members (joining is free) and this app allows you to access the network on the go. You can find and communicate with other doctors on the network, send HIPAA-secure faxes through your phone, and follow news and trends in your specialty.

The app is free to download, but does require you to sign up for membership in the network.

  • Read by QxMD

Read is an app that centralizes all your medical literature and journals.  Using a magazine format, it allows you to read and download studies, journals, and articles from a host of sources including open access journals, Pubmed, and papers from linked institutions.

With tens of thousands of installs, and plenty of free content this is a no-brainer for physicians looking to keep current in their specialty.  The app is free, but some journals and Pubmed may require an institutional or individual subscription or credentials.

  • NEJM This Week

Access recent articles, view images of medical conditions, and listen to audio and video summaries of articles with this app from the trusted New England Journal of Medicine.  Available only for iOS devices, this app also includes videos of medical procedures, and reports on recent research findings.

This app is totally free to download and access.

  • Isabel

Isabel is a diagnosis assistance app. With its results validated by studies which have been peer reviewed in dozens of different medical journals, this app is a solid way for any physician to double check their diagnoses.  Isabel’s database includes over 6,000 disease presentations and symptoms, and the ability to refine results by age, gender, and travel history.

This app does require online access, however, and while the app itself is free, in order to use any of its functionality and data you need to purchase a monthly subscription of $10.99, or an annual one of $119.99.

  • Figure 1 – Medical Images

View and share medical images with other physicians using this free iOS and Android app.  Hundreds of thousands of users send, comment on, and search through medical images in Figure 1’s visual database.  This app is perfect for physicians looking for feedback on a rare condition, or seeking to see and learn about rare or textbook cases.  Additionally, the app guarantees patient privacy with automatic face-blocking and removal of identifying information.

This app is free to download and use.

  • DynaMed Mobile

In both iOS and Android flavors, this app brings the powerful DynaMed reference database to mobile.  Subscribers to DynaMed ($395 a year for an individual physician) will get the full functionality of the decision support tool on their smartphone or other device.

Functionality includes disease references, point of care information, and summaries of over 3,400 different topics, with constant updates as DynaMed’s team looks over new studies and evidence to add to the database.

  • Medscape

This app, by WebMD, is another great medical reference tool offered on iOS and Android.  The app is completely free, but does require you to register for a free account (which you can do through the app itself) to use it.  Once done, you can look up medications and drugs, check the disease reference tool, catch up on medical news, and much more.

  • Virtual Practice for Doctors

A free, mobile-based EMR, this app is accessible through iOS and Android devices, as well as online.  Both the app and service are free, though you can upgrade to a premium version with advanced features like a patient portal and custom domain.  However, the free version offers a great avenue to communicate with patients outside the office, and includes video chat, remote patient monitoring, and the ability to answer typed patient questions.


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