We have been waiting for a such a complete and integrated PDA resource from the AAP for a while, and finally they made it and it’e here The Pediatric Care Online [PCO].
As the name implies this is designed to reside online which means frequent updates, interactive contents, universal platform, access anywhere, and an electronically delivered digital resource that matches the transformation into the IT era of today’s medicine and pediatrics.
Sponsored by Mead Johnson and is available for AAP members at a rate of $250 and for non members for $290 yearly subscription a price that may seem to be on the expensive side but when we consider the number of resources it includes the price might be reasonable.
Fortunately a free trial from Mead Johnson check this link is available:
- Three months for pediatricians
- One year for pediatric residents
PCO encompasses a number of excellent resources and references that are all evidence based and authenticated content right from the governor of our practice the American Academy of Pediatrics.
As it is the most common and arguably the most important PDA function; it included a pediatric drug look up and this time from the highly trusted Lexi database [It is also the drug reference of UpTodate]. The drug guide is integrated and fits well into the rest of software and it is even better than the original Pediatric Lexi Drugs! However, it should have included a built-in calculator and an interaction analyzer to be complete. Also included is a section of antimicrobial therapy which is an extract from the Textbook and provides a focused pediatric antibiotic guide.
The collection also sports a reference in the form of AAP Textbook of Pediatric Care, a News and Updates service, a quick reference tool, Bright Futures, and other resources. For a detailed review of all of these check out the Pediatric Care Online pda4peds review.
Once installed on the PDA you can feel the Unbound Medicine touches throughout the website and the PDA interfaces such as the automatic updates upon synchronization.
This online server link not only updates the content but also updates “myPCO” an online library where search keywords executed on the PDA are transferred and listed there. This is a popular Unbound Medicine technology that has been there since the days of CogniQ Peds. However, that would be much more useful if it is complemented with an online search that can actually be executed on the PDA via wireless connection. This last point is also applicable to related content links which in the native PDA version do not link to the online links it is just said “more content available online”. The search function is much better on the wireless version [To be dicussed in Part 2].
The native PDA version is missing several of the features available in the Web and Wireless versions these are:
Probably they omitted these sections so as to avoid a drastic growth in the size of the PDA program [currently 6 MB only] but that can be true only for the reference and images while the other sections listed will not consume lots of MBs because they are simply links to external online resources. They could have easily included these and the visual library in the form of links to external pages.
The PCO could have been fantastic if they added the following:
- a labs reference, a multifunctional PDA program is NOT complete without this.
- a DDx analyzer , the Signs and Symptoms search section only lists causes that are mentioned in the quick reference and there’s no multiple symptoms analysis tool.
- a journal access, this is a copyright issue of course but at least listing the TOC of the several AAP periodicals that we all crave for.
- a CME tool: The AAP already have great resource in the form of Prep Audio but it would have been nice if CME is collected ‘in-house’ as we are going to use this tool often, check EE+ for such a CME solution.
- and a drug interaction tool; they could have added the Lexi-Interact tool to the collection and if that doesn’t work on the Unbound Medicine platform then they could have added the Drug Interaction Facts already developed by Unbound Medicine.
These shortcomings may be rectified by us in the future as The Pediatric Care Online is supposed to be community driven and they welcome comments and suggestion sent to email@example.com
to be continued in Part 2 …