Find a clinical trial using your iPhone

Healthcare IT Consultant: “Buoyed by the encouraging use of its PHR and Twitter based Clinical Trial matching service, TrialX is readying to release its iPhone application this month. This application, designed for doctors and patients, further underscores TrialX’s commitment to drive technology enabled consumer-driven healthcare. Using the TrialX iPhone App, doctors can search for clinical trials that their patients may be eligible for and email the results to the patients right away. They can filter clinical trials by location, medical condition, treatment, institution conducting the trial and other parameters. Similarly, patients and/or their loved ones can use this application to search for clinical trials. A video demo and screenshots of the new application are available at TrialX Mobile (http://trialx.com/mobile).” – You can search for clinical trials at the TrialX website as well. In addition, TrialX can identify clinical trials that may fit your condition based on your Google Health or MicrosoftVault profile. Take a second to browse around their site, it’s pretty slick.

Why I wanted RxCalc

I have a couple of passions when it comes to pharmacy. The first is a love of pharmacy technology. Very few pharmacists have an appreciation for the “operations” side of pharmacy which includes automated dispensing cabinets, automated carousels, automated TPN compounders, Pharmacy Information System, etc. These tools are absolutely necessary if we want to get pharmacists out of the physical pharmacy and at the bedside where they belong. My second passion is a little less known discipline known as pharmacokinetics. I have no idea why I like pharmacokinetics; I just do. Some kids like PB&J and some don’t. It’s just the way it is.
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BlackBerry versus iPhone popularity in healthcare.

mobilehealthnews: “For the record, BlackBerry has conducted clinical trials with smartphones paired with Bluetooth-enabled medical peripheral devices for years. Three of the company’s smartphones are among the five most popular smartphones in North America. At least one executive at BlackBerry-maker Research In Motion is a bit curious about all the hype around Apple’s recent medical foray with the iPhone. mobihealthnews recently had the chance to discuss wireless healthcare trends with Research In Motion’s Fraser Edward who heads the company’s Healthcare Marketing Group. In this second installment, Edward explains the points above and much, much more, including: which types of BlackBerrys physicians prefer, why wireless health needs to adopt a “belts and braces” approach, how RIM’s latest acquisition — Chalk Media — fits into wireless health, and what the BlackBerry App World’s advent signifies. Edward also shares his favorite App World app.” – Edwards goes on to talk about physician preferences for various BlackBerry devices, going as far as to say “to pinpoint the phones that I’ve seen us getting a lot of traction on within the medical community — it would be the Storm and the Bold“. If I were to use a BlackBerry device, I believe it would be the Storm. I like the idea of a touch screen more and more each day. However, I’ve heard many people claim the Bold is much better for messaging. The future of BlackBerry devices appears fuzzy as the iPhone’s popularity continues to grow. It seems that every physician, pharmacist and IT professional I see in the hospital is carrying an iPhone. Remember the days of the Palm Pilot and its incredible popularity? There was a time when Palm powered handheld devices enjoyed the same popularity as the BlackBerry devices do today. As the smart phone revolution got underway, Palm devices simply disappeared. The popularity of the iPhone will eventually do the same to the BlackBerry, especially when Apple begins offering the iPhone through other carriers. Among pharmacists in “my circle”, I am one of the few that chose not to change carriers for the iPhone. Only time will tell what will happen to BlackBerry smart phones, but I see the end sooner than later unless Research In Motion has something up its sleeve. Apple and the iPhone are simply too powerful. Good luck BlackBerry, you’re going to need it.

Pharmacokinetics on the iPhone/iPod Touch

iphone_mainmed2Apple Core Labs Blog: “Apple Core Labs first iPhone/iPod Touch application, RxCalc, is now available on the iPhone App Store.”

RxCalc is an idea that my brother and I have had for quite some time. The idea for a portable pharmacokinetics calculator originated many years ago during my infatuation with the TRGpro and the Palm Operating  System. The timing for the application was never quite right, but the appearance of the iPhone changed all that. The portability, advanced features and popularity of the iPhone make it the ideal platform for developing a portable pharmacokinetics calculator.

RxCalc was designed as a tool for pharmacists to perform aminoglycoside and vancomycin kinetics, including new starts using population parameters and dosage adjustments using levels.

The code and user interface was written and developed by Apple Core Labs (Robert Fahrni), while I was responsible for the math and user experience (i.e. the workflow).

Apple Core Labs would like to recruit some pharmacists to use the application and provide feedback, good or bad. To receive a free promotional code redeemable at the iTunes store stop by the Apple Core Labs Blog and simply follow the instructions.

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rxadjust rxnewresults

Pharmacy school requires iPhone/iPod Touch

AppleInsider.com: “The University of Florida is the second school in as many months to announce that students enrolling in one of its curriculums this fall will be required to own either an iPhone or iPod touch, highlighting an increasing role for Apple’s multi-touch devices in higher education.” –When I graduated from pharmacy school in 1997, a laptop was considered really big news.  I wonder where we’ll be in another ten years. Who knows, but I’m looking forward to it.

Cool Technology for Pharmacy

Lexi-Drugs for the iPhone: “.. our most comprehensive drug database, with content that addresses all patient populationsand covers clinical specialties such as Pharmacy, Internal Medicine, Cardiology, Oncology, Psychiatry, Anesthesiology, and others. Independently ranked as the #1 drug database for the PDA, Lexi-Drugs includes up to 67 fields of  information, including Adverse Reactions, Canadian Brand Names, Contraindications, Dosing, Medication Safety Issues,  Pharmacodynamics and Kinetics, Special Alerts (including new FDA warnings), plus International BrandNames from 125 countries. Includes drug pricing.”
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Apple patent details RFID tag reader.

9to5mac.com: “RFID reader built into the screen?  We’re not quite sure why they’d need to do this (as opposed to putting the reader somewhere else in the device) but Apple has put a patent application on this.” – In addition, the US Patent and Trademark Office lists the following: “The efficient incorporation of RFID circuitry within touch sensor panel circuitry is disclosed. The RFID antenna can be placed in the touch sensor panel, such that the touch sensor panel can now additionally function as an RFID transponder. No separate space-consuming RFID antenna is necessary. Loops (single or multiple) forming the loop antenna of the RFID circuit (for either reader or tag applications) can be formed from metal on the same layer as metal traces formed in the borders of a substrate. Forming loops from metal on the same layer as the metal traces are advantageous in that the loops can be formed during the same processing step as the metal traces, without requiring a separate metal layer.” I can think of several uses for an iPhone with a built in RFID Tag reader, it can already read barcodes. The iPhone just keeps getting cooler and cooler.