Get Used to the PDA
in Clinical Practice
    Take it with you!
    Try to keep the device with you wherever you go (home, hospital, clinic, party, travel ...etc), this way you
    gonna feel the device and will have time to play with it and therefore you will learn the corners and hitches
    faster.
    Some people they do bring it over but they leave it at the office or in the locker! Don't do that.
    Also it's better to be a phone edition device because if you have both a cell phone and a PDA then you will
    certainly drop the latter in favor of the former, get them both in one.
    Make it your organizer
    Before indulging into the vast array of available medical programs start with some basic functions. Make it
    the place where you keep you contacts list and address book, your appointments, your notes, your
    documents, videos, photos, and emails [what's collectively known as Personal Infomration Management
    PIM]. If you do this your PDA will be indispensable and you'll get used to it in a matter of few days.
September 5, 2008
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    Keep the stylus in
    Perhaps having to take the stylus out and using it to look up information is an obstacle (two hands
    needed) and so to avoid that get a device with touch technology (recent Windows Mobile and Palm
    devices and iPhone) which will eliminate the need for the stylus.
    Try using the navigation button in stead and try using programs that allow navigation using your single
    thumb.

    Free Tools
    Let's face it, many of us are just reluctant to top-up their handhelds with medical software just because of
    the price it entails so here's the solution get free applications on your phone and pay nothing.

    Choosing the device ...
    Get a device that suits your needs (read this article) and get an OS on which you can install the medical
    programs (read this article).
    One of the reasons that medical professionals stop using their PDA is the small screen size and the
    difficulty encountered while reading the small text, to get around this get yourself a device with a large
    screen.
    Another tip here is to buy a device that has an OS "like Palm, Windows Mobile, iPhone" similar to your
    colleagues at work so that you can share thoughts, discuss, exchange ideas, transfer documents, and get
    help from each other if problems arise.
    Pediatricians and physicians may get easily discouraged and abandon or avoid their handheld in
    clinical practice, specially the senior colleagues.
    This guide helps to ensure the adaptation of the handheld into the daily clinical life.
    Here's the 10 things that you should do to get accustomed to the PDA.

    Don't be embarrassed
    Use it in front of your patients and their parents they will
    like it and you will look more of an oriented, concerned, and
    an updated hi-tech physician.

    Normal values
    In addition to looking up drug dosages try to check your
    patient normal values (like the appropriate weight, height,
    blood pressure, laboratory values ...etc) at his/her specific
    age. This task can be done with each and every patient
    and it will empower you with the expected background of
    the patient and it will familiarize you more and more with
    the PDA on a daily basis.
    The Growth and Development and the Labs and Tests
    categories will help you find programs to this.

    Your CME hub
    You don't need to fly or to drive just to attend that conference to build your CME record. Just take your
    device and have your CME while in the train or at spare times! See the CME category for more details.

    Visit this website often!
    Pda4peds.com maintains an updated list of pediatric applications on the handheld with the latest news
    and some tips and tricks on how best to use the PDA. Subscribing to the Newsletter and the Blog can also
    help keep you entertained in the subject.

    Instant Answers
    Just before seeing the abdominal pain patient in ER
    review the causes using a DDx program , and check out
    whether your in-patient cholesterol level is really
    abnormal for his age using a lab application, and what
    could be the possible drug interactions in a child on
    multi medications!
    If you train yourself on these and similar simple tasks
    that have to be answered at the bedside then with
    time you will feel that your PDA is actually your secret
    weapon and you will never abandon it.
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