Update: We have added a response by WebMD in regards to a question we had about Medscape in this post.
By: Philip Xiu
Editors Note: This is the first Blackberry medical app review by iMedicalApps - with more reviews coming. Philip Xiu is currently finishing medical school at the University Of Cambridge School of Clinical Medicine (UK). Next year he will begin his Academic Foundation internship in Cardiology/Clinical Pharmacology at UCLH (Univeristy College London Hospitals).
Medscape is a massively popular free app released for a variety of platforms (iPhone, iPad, Android) and was released relatively recently to the Blackberry last year. Developed by WebMD, which has a reputation for accurate and reliable information, this app is currently the number one downloaded medical app for the BlackBerry platform.
More importantly it reinforces the notion that BlackBerry devices can be used in the medical community, not only for their unrivalled email and messaging services, but also as a platform for medical apps.
The app is approximately 1MB in size once installed and updated, and runs smoothly. Unlike the Skyscape app for Blackberry, Medscape opens fast and updates are stable.
For a more detailed description of the major features, please refer to the reviews of the iPhone and iPad versions. In brief, unlike any of the other platforms; the BlackBerry Medscape app only contains the Drug reference, medical news and drug interaction checker. Other platforms have the extremely useful “Disease & Condition” and “Procedures & Protocol” sections. This app is reminiscent of the initial version 1.0 iPhone Medscape app that was released with only the basic features as well.
The extensive database contains 6,000+ generic and brand drugs, and includes 1,000+ herbals and supplements. It contains comprehensive information including adult & pediatric dosing, adverse effects, and pregnancy & lactation guidelines. A very useful inclusion is the “Save” feature, which allows the addition of commonly searched drugs to your ‘Saved’ list for fast access.
Drug Interaction Checker:
Check for interactions between drugs, herbals, and supplements (for up to 30 at once).
I would like to see future updates to include the “Diseases & Conditions” reference as well as the “Procedures & Protocols” to put the Blackberry Medscape app on an even keel with the iPhone and the Android platform.
UPDATE (editors note):
WebMD has the following statement in regards to the lack of a more comprehensive Medscape app on the Blackberry:
“With the introduction of BlackBerry OS 6, we’re evaluating whether to add the Clinical Reference capabilities to the Blackberry platform in the future.”
From this update one can assume that Blackberry OS versions prior to 6 most likely won’t get the comprehensive app with the “Disease & Conditions” and “Procedures and Protocols” reference.