There are literally thousands of apps related to the medical field available for purchase or free download on iTunes. Some of them are targeted while others are comprehensive in their scope. Some are meant for learning while others provide resources for practicing medical professionals. And some are even meant to help the layperson take control of their own health by providing information that will help them to avoid harmful drug interactions or deal with minor medical situations without having to run to the emergency room for unnecessary tests and treatments. But for those that are pursuing a medical education or even working in a medical field already, there are few resources that come in handy more often than a medical dictionary. Since neither students nor doctors want to carry around a heavy tome to every class or appointment, Unbound Medicine, Inc. has come up with a way to make this vast compendium of information accessible on the go via mobile application.
The Taber’s Medical Dictionary for Mobile + Web app is one that no med student, nurse, or doctor should go without. The program provides users with over 60,000 definitions of medical terms, and the 21st (or current) edition offers more than 9,000 new entries and revisions so that you can get the most up-to-date information available to the medical industry. In addition, nearly half of the terms listed (almost 30,000 entries) come with audio segments for pronunciation. But there’s a lot more to this medical dictionary than simple definitions for cystitis, eczema, or fallophobia. The app also provides more than 1,000 color images to help educate users, like an ultrasound photo, for example, or a diagram of the inside of an eye. And there are also 600 sections that cover common patient care information.
In addition, this app has been optimized for use with the iPad (although it is also available for the iPhone and iPod Touch), so you’ll get more than just an enlarged version of content that was originally designed for a phone-sized screen. And of course, there are features that frequent users will love, like the universal index search and the list of favorites that you can populate with terminology you know you’ll want to look up again (or that you’d like to save and show to a colleague). In short, it’s more than just your average dictionary.
However, there is one small catch that some mobile users may not appreciate: the price. Although the app itself is free to download, it is useless without an online account for Taber’s Medical Dictionary for Mobile + Web, and this will set you back $49.95 for a year of service. This may sound extremely pricy for an app, but consider this: a physical copy of Taber’s Medical Dictionary will cost you only slightly less at $39.95. While you will get to keep it forever, it’s not exactly convenient to cart around and it doesn’t come with many of the extras offered by the app. In addition, you would have to buy each new edition anyway in order to get the updates that the app provides automatically. Plus, students seeking a medical or masters nurse practitioner degree will have to buy tons of books each semester anyway – this could be considered just one more. And practicing medical professionals can write off the purchase as a work expense. So although it’s pricier than most apps, what you’re really paying for is not the product (which you could buy a paper copy of), but the ease of use
Thanks to Evan Fischer for this guest post. He is a freelance writer and part-time student at California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, California.