Now Updated with Coronavirus Guidelines for POC Treatment of COVID-19 Patients and Contacts
On New Years Eve, the World Health Organization (WHO) was notified of an outbreak of pneumonia of unknown origin in Wuhan province, China. Within days, the outbreak had surpassed 500 people with multiple fatalities. Public health officials in China quickly tracked the index case to a “wet market” in Wuhan and by 10 January the virus was determined to be a novel coronavirus related to both SARS and MERS. Days later, evidence of person-to-person transmission was confirmed. Case reports and case series from the NEJM have demonstrated a doubling of the outbreak every 4.5 days and each case transmits the infection to 2.2 people.
During the second half of January, the virus rapidly spread throughout mainland China and to numerous countries around the world, including the United States who reported the first case in Washington state. As of 15 March 2020, the virus has infected at least 162,687 and 6,065 have died. The WHO has declared a world-wide pandemic on 11 March and the United States a National Emergency on 13 March. As of 15 March, the US has over 3,244 cases in 49 states and the District of Columbia. The CDC has published helpful information for the public and medical health providers for identification, diagnosis, and recommended treatment of coronavirus cases.
Previously, here at iMedicalApps, we highlighted the outstanding work of the Johns Hopkins Whiting School of Engineering creation of a mapping tool to provide real-time data on the coronavirus outbreak. The website has caused quite a stir in the media and featured by both medical professionals and the public alike. The website provides country, state/province level data of cases, fatalities, recoveries, rate of rise, and links to other coronavirus resources.
As the pandemic moves to the US, I went looking for a dedicated coronavirus app. Apple came out in early March publicly stating they would only publish apps from public health and other reputable authorities. I noticed a week ago that my excellent Relief Central app from Unbound Medicine had been updated to include a new section called “Coronavirus Guidelines.”
We haven’t reviewed Relief Central since 2015 when we felt it was perfect for aid workers, but had some drawbacks. However, I was happy to have the app on my last deployment in Afghanistan and felt the content was excellent and appreciated the constant updating the app receives. The new section on coronavirus is perfectly timed and brings expert and evidence-based content from the CDC and WHO and the Hopkins’ team of experts together in one app.
The complete Relief Central app is free and includes a number of resources for aid/relief workers including: The World Factbook from the CIA, CDC Yellow Book, the Field Operations Guide from USAID, Prime PubMed Search, and Relief News from the Red Cross, United Nations, US Centers for Disease Control, CDC, FEMA, and now their very own section on coronavirus guidelines. This new section includes details on WHO and CDC case definitions, Case Definitions, Clinical Syndromes, Infection Control, Lab Diagnosis, Treatment recommendations, and links to references/resources.
Relief Central from Unbound Medicine has incorporated a new module into their already outstanding app called Coronavirus Guidelines. This section brings together the most current content from the experts at the CDC, WHO, and Johns Hopkins into one succinct app. The guidelines provide outstanding built-in PubMed searches to cover specific treatments under research, and each subsection is extensively referenced with PubMed links to the articles.
What providers would benefit from this App?
Patients, students, residents, nurses, mid-levels, Public Health, Primary Care, Emergency Medicine, Hospitalists, critical care providers, and any provider who takes care of coronavirus patients or their contacts.
- Incorporates content from CDC, WHO, and Hopkins own experts.
- PubMed searches “preloaded” using Unbound Medicine search engine and divided topically.
- Includes coronavirus map link by Hopkins, webinar for nurses and clinicians, and dedicated patient section.
- Content on coronavirus from Hopkins Abx guide requires subscription.
- Section on coronavirus testing seems incomplete.
- Not available for Android.
- We previously favorably reviewed Relief Central, but still had some reservations. Now 5 years since that last review, the app has been consistently improved and updated. The newest addition of coronavirus guidelines is perfectly timed. The app provides the basics needed for all healthcare providers who want to learn more and/or must take care of patients. The links to CDC and WHO contents are well-incorporated, and the topically driven PubMed searches are inspired. The fact that the app has content for both providers and patients makes it even more highly recommendable. Finally, although I focused mostly on the coronavirus information in this review, the app contains sections from the CIA World Factbook, CDC Yellowbook, and the USAID Field Operations Guide. A must-have app during the pandemic and for any healthcare workers around the world.
- Overall Score
- o 5.0 stars
- User Interface
- o 4.5 stars
- Easy to navigate with sections for providers and patients. Can jump around app easily with numerous embedded hyperlinks.
- Multimedia Usage
- o 5.0 stars
The app has extensive hyperlinks to PDFs, handouts, CDC and WHO websites, and extensive PubMed references and searches using the Unbound Medicine search engine.
o 5.0 stars
App is free!
- Real World Applicability
- o 5.0 stars
The additional coronavirus guidelines section to the Relief Central app makes an already underrated app even better. The content is updated almost daily and is extensively referenced and hyperlinked. A true must have app during this increasingly concerning pandemic. Highly recommended.
- Device Used For Review
- o iPhone 11 Pro running iOS 13.3.1