westernmed007

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May 21, 2007
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I'm torn, I start rotations in July and I would like to get a PDA to make myself more efficient, I can't decide which one I should get. (Note: I'm not going to use my PDA as a phone, I'll only use it with WIFI)

Apparently the new software development kit is released for the I-touch in June and it will have epocrates on it. The I-touch looks easier to use, has more memory, and will likely be more suitable to non-doctor fun stuff that I could use when I'm on vacation. (I'm not the kinda person that will ultimately use my I-touch to screw off in the hospital).

The Palm TX seems to be the SDN PDA gold standard, but Palm's market share has fallen badly this year, the memory is atrocious, and it doesn't seem as easy to nav and use as an I-touch. However it can get epocrates on it right now.

So I guess I'm thinking I should wait till June, get the I-touch when epocrates comes out for it, and get ready to roll in rotations.

My question to you is what do you think? Am I missing something? Are there other programs I should be worried about getting? Any big drawbacks of either PDA that I haven't mentioned? Please advise....
 

OncoCaP

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The Palm TX with Epocrates is nice. You can use 2GB memory cards and have more than ample memory to do anything sensible. It will do anything you need for that class processor. The iTouch looks nice as well although I'm not sure how well Epocrates would work on it. I'm not sure I would want to be one to "beta test" the initial version of Epocrates on iTouch but perhaps it will be ok. I like the documents to go (professional version) for the Palm TX, although it does perform very poorly with large PowerPoint (e.g., 20 MB) documents or complex PDF files. More typical PowerPoint files and nearly all documents I run across (in the 2-5 MB range) do very well. Other than that, I'm pretty happy with it. Epocrates really does not tax it at all; it works well and fast. I also have several other applications such as LexiComp and various calculators. The WiFi updates work very well. Memory simply is not a problem because you can use the 2GB SD memory cards, which are quite cheap. I could see why you would want the iTouch, however. Using this Palm TX with patients is discreet and unobtrusive. I would rather be using a tablet computer, however, because I would prefer something more the size of a notepad for writing.
 

smq123

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I'm torn, I start rotations in July and I would like to get a PDA to make myself more efficient, I can't decide which one I should get.

My question to you is what do you think? Am I missing something? Are there other programs I should be worried about getting?
I don't use my PDA for many things in the hospital - I definitely do NOT use it to keep track of my patients! That would be much too time consuming - and pen and paper works fine for that anyway.

I use my PDA for epocrates, and to log my patient encounters (a requirement for school). I also use it to for the OB wheel program, the mini-mental status exam program, and the BMI calculator program. There's also a free ABG calculator that I don't use very often.

Some of my classmates also had practice questions and review texts on their PDAs, to read during down time (without needing to lug around a book). I didn't care - I just lugged around a book. Some residents understand what you're doing when you stare at your PDA, but some attendings might think that you're playing solitaire or something.

I'm honestly not sure how much more efficient the PDA will make you. That just depends on YOU, not on your technological equipment.
 

njbmd

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