The World Health Organization (WHO) Pocket Book of Hospital Care for Children (Blue Pocketbook) is widely used throughout the medical world in developing countries. Though the book makes sure to include the most up-to-date information available at that time, the medical world is never at a standstill. Just sit and think about all the new medical advances that have made news this month.
In the past we have created our own reference of essential pediatric apps for iPhone and Android that Pediatricians and those caring for children should download.
To help bridge the gap the WHO, in conjunction with The Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne, the University of Melbourne and Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, developed the WHO e-Pocketbook of Hospital Care for Children app based on the widely used WHO Pocket Book.
This free pediatric app is the electronic version of the WHO Pocketbook and just like the book it is designed for doctors, nurses and other health workers who are responsible for caring for pediatric children in developing countries. There is a heavy emphasis on the management of the major causes of childhood mortality in developing countries, such as HIV/AIDS, diarrhea, pneumonia, prematurity, and malaria just to name a few.
Once you open up the pediatric app, you can click on guidelines, and you have the option to either search the content using a keyword or browse the content by chapter. The app lists 12 chapters, each covering a different illness, and provides guidance on the stages of management for every child. A few of the chapters include triage and emergency medicine conditions, cough or difficulty breathing, fever and counseling and discharge from the hospital. Once you click on a chapter, it is broken down into sections, which provides detailed information about each medical problem.
This detailed chapter breakdown is a helpful feature. For instance, chapter 6 in this pediatric app is fever. Once you click on the chapter, you get several more topic options such as a child presenting with fever, fever lasting longer than seven days and malaria. Instead of having to read and search through all of the content you can go straight to the section needed. The search content box could also be a good place to start because it allows you to search for a topic and then lists everywhere your topic is mentioned within the app. This adds another helpful tool to help research problems and provide the best medical care.
The book version is not going away and will still be readily available. What really sets the WHO e-Pocketbook app apart from the actual book copy is the fact that it will be regularly updated. The app, unlike the book, will actually contain the most up-to-date information, which makes it a valuable medical tool.
If you find the WHO’s pocket reference useful, then you will also find the CDC’s collection of free medical apps useful as well.