When designing an application, the user interface can make or break the experience.

There are numerous medical apps that are initially exciting but are deleted soon after download due to a poor user interface.

Things as simple as too much text and poor navigation are common errors.

GCSer Free, created by Cosmos, is a great example of a simple but very well executed medical app.

The Glascow coma scale is an often referenced scale for sick patients. Often used in the Emergency Room and ICU, it quickly becomes second nature for practicing physicians. For students and trainees, however, it is nice to have a rapid access tool for assistance. While many general medical calculators include this functionality, the strength here is the steps & time saved from not having to find the GCS tool in the app each time (at least until the user memorizes it).

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The GCSer app opens to the first scale in the calculation – Eye Movement. This serves as the user interface as there is no opening screen to navigate through. The user simply clicks an option and moves to the second scale.

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Again, the user interface is helpful as it has a simple tracking label at the top and moves the user to the next calculation. No added fuss.

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The last screen shows you the values for each scale (Eye 3, Voice 2, Motor 4) and the total (9). The only user interface blip is that to return to the beginning you have to click the back button three times. This is because the application does not start at the beginning after closing it and does not have a Home button.

Healthcare providers that would benefit from the app

  • Medical students, new mid-levels, and new residents in the fields of Emergency Medicine and Critical Care

Evidence based medicine

  • Mostly not applicable as it is such a universally used scale, but there are no references regarding prediction validity, etc.

Price

  • Free

Likes

  • Extremely user friendly

Dislikes

  • Add a Home button to the last screen
  • I would rather it restart at the eye scale upon opening the application rather than showing previous results
  • Add an article or two about the scale’s use and prediction ability.

Conclusion

  • Useful teaching tool and excellent user interface
  • As of publish, no Android version is available

Type of Device used to review app Version of App–iPhone 5

iTunes Link

Rating: 4.5 Stars

  1. User Interface: 5 stars- simple, clean, forward thinking
  2. Multimedia usage: 4 stars- if there was an explanation page and references it would be 5
  3. Price: 5 stars- free
  4. Real world applicability: 5 stars- a basic and often used formula

 

Disclaimer:
This post does not establish, nor is it intended to establish, a patient physician relationship with anyone. It does not substitute for professional advice, and does not substitute for an in-person evaluation with your healthcare provider. It does not provide the definitive statement on the subject addressed. Before using these apps please consult with your own physician or healthcare provider.