This is a guest post by Lorraine Aubert. If you want to guest post on Go Backpacking, please read more here.
There is a new addition to iTunes' line-up of travel apps. The app, called Travel Health, is based on the book, ” Travelling Well”? by Dr. Deborah Mills, a travel medicine specialist in Australia. While the medical information in the app is accurate, easy to read and understand; there is much room for improvement in 3 key areas.
1. Design: I would like to see the categories organized alphabetically or in a ” head to toe”? fashion. Searching to find the desired topic would be easier this way. When some of the categories are opened, a pop-up STOP window opens and alerts the reader of potential emergencies. I found this to be irritating. The information is important but I'd rather see it highlighted at the beginning of the description. I also didn't care for the arrows to open/close the topics of the category.
2. Search function: This is lacking and many symptoms cannot be found using search. For instance, CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation) cannot be found in the search box but it is listed under Collapse in the Emergencies category. Searching ” yeast”? will also not appear but yeast infections are covered under the topic of ” Thrush.”? Being an international application, I think its important to include additional names for problems in order to find them using search. It would also be nice to be able to search for drugs using the search function.
3. Important missing symptoms: Under Chest Problems there is no mention whatsoever on chest pain or heart palpitations, an important oversight. Since 16.7 million people globally die of cardiac disease, it is vital to include its signs and symptoms.
What I Liked
The feature I really like is the drug reference table. Its design is easy to use and it gives pertinent, relevant information. The lay person can easily look up a drug name and also view other names for the drug which is helpful for the international traveler. The dosing information is really handy also. The information on Altitude Sickness is excellent and I also like the bookmark function to save favorite topics.
As an emergency department registered nurse, I believe this app has a good start. The developers need to work on the design issues a bit, especially the search function and it is imperative to add cardiac symptoms to its Chest Problems category. The app is currently on sale for $2.99 with a regular price of $7.99. I rated the app a 3 out of 5 stars.
About the Author: Lorraine Aubert (RN, MSN, CEN) is the travel blogger behind iTraveldame and can be found on Twitter @lorraineya.
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