New app aim to inform medical staff and improve patient care

Dr Paul Fettes (back, third right) with members of the development team.
Dr Paul Fettes (back, third right) with members of the development team.

A new smartphone app that will aid patient care by making the latest information available to doctors and health professionals has been launched in Tayside.

The Tayside Acute Care Guide has been developed by the area’s health authority with the aim of bringing medical guidelines to the patients’ bedside.

It was created to help junior doctors, other healthcare professionals and medical students by providing guidance on emerging situations in medicine, surgery, paediatrics, obstetrics and psychiatry as well as on practical procedures and pain management.

The guide, which was launched last week, has been designed specifically for use within NHS Tayside and refers to Tayside-specific protocols and contact numbers, although it also includes many national guidelines and protocols.

The app’s further development allows users to access this vital information wherever they may need it.

It was the idea of former Dundee medical student Dr Thomas Johnston and consultant anaesthetist Dr Paul Fettes and was developed by a team of senior doctors and other healthcare professionals with the help of Chris Kennedy and Natalie Lafferty from the Dundee Medical School Technology and Innovation and Learning Team (TILT).

The Tayside Acute Care Guide is also available on the internet as an online resource and was adapted as a smartphone app by medical student and computing studies graduate Christopher McCann.

The two resources are linked to ensure the app is as up-to-date as possible.

Dr Fettes said: “This development is tremendously exciting because users can now store the guide on their phone and it will be readily accessible, thus bringing a vast array of medical guidelines to the bedside.

“The app is easy to use, is free to download and is available on most of the main platforms.

“The app is also designed to update when changes are made to the online guide.”