Posts Tagged ‘nursing apps’

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Web Stuff: Meds and Heat, Noise Epidemic, Nurses and Smartphones at Work

July 11, 2012

By Jacob Molyneux, AJN senior editor/blog editor

Flickr/National Archives and Records Administration

Medicines and summer heat. Anyone with one or more prescription medicines might occasionally wonder whether there’s a better place to store them than a kitchen cabinet. This is especially true for meds mailed to you in three-month supplies rather than the one-month supply we used to get.

Here’s a brief article at the NPR Shots blog that notes a few meds that you particularly should be concerned about, emphasizes that areas of extreme heat or humidity are the worst location (so-called “medicine cabinets” in humid and hot bathrooms are not so great, nor are cabinets over stoves, in direct sun, or the like). While most medicines can tolerate a certain amount of abuse, the ideal environment for most of them (except those that need refrigeration) is room temperature, which doesn’t mean Fahrenheit temperatures reaching into the 80s or 90s. I’ve sometimes wondered why someone doesn’t just invent a type of medicine storage container that can be locked if need be, limits humidity, etc. Steal my idea—please! Are there any strategies you find effective for safely storing medications?

Smartphones at work: OK, in case you didn’t know it, most nurses are using smartphones at work:

In 2010, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated that 72 percent of physicians use smartphones. Nurses aren’t far behind, with 71 percent using smartphones on the job, according to a recent survey conducted by Wolters Kluwer Health, which is launching its Lippincott Williams & Wilkins Nursing 2013 Drug Handbook mobile app, MobiHealth News reports.

What’s your experience of this? How do you use smartphones? Are you allowed to do so, encouraged to do so, or forbidden? What do you use it for while at work? Epocrates? Words With Friends?

Turn it down! We hear a lot about the negative health effects of noise in hospitals. But it’s not just hospitals. I was reading a book on the subway yesterday on the way home when a man stood right up against me with headphones playing music so loudly I couldn’t make it through a sentence. Imagine what he was doing to his own ears. As it happens, I was reading a Swedish police procedural published in 1969 at the time, and in particular a passage in which you learn a certain suspected murdererer had been cited for running the water too often and too late at night, walking up and down the apartment too loudly, and the like. The city had sent out official noise inspectors to measure the decibel level. Incredible—this would never happen in the U.S. Running the water too loudly? Read the rest of this entry ?

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Books or e-Books: How Do You Read?

April 24, 2012

By Maureen Shawn Kennedy, MA, RN, AJN editor-in-chief

AJN iPad app display

I just finished reading a report, released earlier this month from the Pew Research Center, on the rise of e-reading—whether on e-book readers like Kindles and Nooks; tablet devices like iPads; cell phones; or computers. The report details the results of surveys of nearly 3,000 adults ages 16 years and older conducted in December, 2011, and then again in February, 2012, about their reading habits.

Prior to the 2011 holiday season, approximately 17% of adults had read an e-book in the previous year, but in the post-holiday survey early the next year, following holiday gift giving, that number had jumped to 21%. While printed books still dominate (in December, 2011, 72% of Americans reported that they had read a printed book in the past 12 months), e-reading is growing more popular. And it seems that those who read e-books are spending more time reading “since the advent of e-content”: in particular, 41% of tablet owners and 35% of e-reading device owners say they are reading more now.

Format follows function. One question asked in the December 2011 survey was which format was better for a variety of reading situations. E-books scored slightly higher than print books for reading in bed (45% vs 43%), but considerably higher for reading while traveling or commuting (73% vs 19%), availability of broad selection of content (53% vs 35%), and “being able to get a book quickly” (83% vs 13%). I concur on all points. (Reading with a child and sharing books with others were notable exceptions, with traditional print books still highly favored for these activities.)

I wasn’t especially keen on getting an e-reading device, but my family gave me one as a gift. It proved itself when snowstorms left me stranded in Puerto Rico while I was on a winter vacation (see my blog post). The hotel’s paperback supply quickly became depleted. However, with my trusty Kindle, I just downloaded more reading material.

I love the portability of having scores of books at my disposal—and the option to get just about anything else I want, from newspapers to journals. Now, I take my iPad, which has a Kindle app that allows me to access books I downloaded on that device; it’s also backlit, which means I don’t have to keep a light on if I read in bed. I only take my Kindle if I plan to read on a beach, since it’s not backlit and doesn’t have any glare.

AJN now has an iPad app and many journals are developing them as well (we hope to eventually have applications to fit other e-reading devices too). I’m wondering—are many of you, our readers, reading e-books? Are you using the iPad, or do you prefer computers (used by a surprisingly high percentage of survey respondents), Kindles, Nooks, or other devices? We’d love to hear how you’re reading.

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