When it comes to surgical training, one of the key parts of the assessment is based on surgical experience which is maintained in a logbook.

Many surgeons have now switched to digital logbooks or apps such as Surgical Logbook. In the UK, surgical trainees are now forced to keep a personal log of all their experiences in theatre.

This requirement is part of the Intercollegiate Surgical Curriculum Programme (ISCP) and uses eLogbook. The Mobile eLogbook has been designed in co-operation with the elogbook.org site which states:

The eLogbook is a cradle-to-grave facility which has been developed in close cooperation with the Specialty Associations to provide a whole of life service to surgeons of whatever specialty, and which links to the consultants Surgeons’ Portfolio. You should start compiling your logbook as soon as possible – as soon as you start training in whatever capacity. At present, over 31,000 surgeons use the eLogbook

Opening the app prompts the user to enter their elogbook.org login credentials which will then cause the app to synchronise with your individual account. All the operations and hospital codes including your favourite procedures, consultants and hospitals will be downloaded for use with the app. It is only possible to set these favourites on the elogbook website.

The app itself has a relatively basic user interface however it is functional and straightforward to use.

As users of eLogbook will be aware, each different specialty has different options for each operation record. It is possible to change this by going into the settings. The supported specialties included are:

  • Cardiothoracic Surgery
  • General Surgery
  • Neurosurgery
  • Opthalmology
  • Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
  • Otolaryngology
  • Paediatric Surgery
  • Plastic Surgery
  • Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgery
  • Urology

It is straightforward to fill in all the operative details which are identical to those on the eLogbook website. The user doers not need to be connected to the internet in order to fill out operative records. Each record is stored and can be uploaded at an appropriate moment. Favourites are available at the push of a button. Search facility allows rapid identification of a particular procedure.

Security is obviously a paramount issue when dealing with patient identifiable data. To this end, each user is forced to set/enter a PIN code when first opening the app. According to the official website of the app:

Mobile eLogbook is protected by a PIN which is stored in the iPhone keychain

Patient data is secured using the AES256 encryption algorithm (Approved by the U.S Government to protect classified documents)

Data is uploaded to the elogbook.org servers over a secure HTTPS connection (the same encryption that is used when logging in to the elogbook.org website)

One final note is that there is nothing stopping user’s browsing to the eLogbook site on their mobile devices and entering data that way. This method is obviously not as practical but does get around the £4.99 per year subscription charge.

Price:

  • The mobile eLogbook app is free however there is no upload functionality (apart from the free 7 day trial at the beginning). Upload functionality costs £4.99 per year and is essential as there is no other way of syncing the mobile app with the website version.

Likes:

  • Favourites automatically downloaded from eLogbook site onto mobile device
  • Full mobile functionality of the website on your mobile device
  • eLogbook automatically downloads new operations and updates

Dislikes:

  • Not straightforward to change specialty (have to go back into settings)

 

Overall
  • eLogbook is a great mobile app for surgeons who want to have the ability to update their training logbook wherever they are.

 

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