Elsevier has launched MDConsult – the Australian Version.
The MDConsult Australia framework appears almost identical to the original US MDConsult. However, the addition of full-text Aussie textbooks and journals and the comprehensive integration of Australian drug names/dosing regimens gives the site a welcome sense of being designed for the Australian physician.
Australian physicians now have access to more local content, including drug information from the Australian Medicines Handbook (AMH), Australian journals content and a growing list of practice guidelines from Australian societies, colleges and government agencies.
The website is designed to provide a one-stop shop for clinical research and medical education and, although the publishers never claimed it to be ‘idiot-proof’, I took the liberty of testing it with some of my more ‘technologically challenged’ colleagues. This cursory and wholly unscientific trial yielded surprising results. The site was trialled using both the hospital network (Intel Pentium III 1GB running XP and IE 6.0…) and the iPhone.
- The desktop based website proved to be robust and accurate with a surprisingly rapid page load time even on IE dinasour. In fact, without prompting or didactic demonstration the usually befuddled consultant physicians were easily able to determine the location of the ‘search box’ and identify the derivative options for content interrogation.
- With minor coercion our guinea-pigs explored the options of First Consult (800 review articles on common conditions) and performed journal, drug and book searches.
- Overall they were most impressed with the ‘search’ function which comprehensively managed to accurately interrogate the huge content database and provide a series of rapid and logical return results.
- The mobile version of the site was somewhat lost on our clinical veterans, most of whom thought an iPhone was actually a primitive form of communication by blinking in Morse code…So, I chose a couple of the more adroit of the participants to test the platform. They found the mobile version to be a little clunky but intuitive enough to be useful as a bedside tool.
Next week I plan to test the website on some non-octogenarian clinicians with more fingers than thumbs and with less inherent clinical logic!
These more technologically adept individuals would be pleased that the launch of MDConsult Australia has coincided with the expansion of the publishers foray into social media integration. Elsevier Australia are now more in touch with their audience through
- Flickr Stream and Slideshare
- Twitter Accounts: @ElsevierAUS, @MedConnect
- YouTube Channel (MDconsult)
- Facebook Group
MDConsult Australia provides FREE access to MDConsult Australia and MDConsult Mobile featuring books, journals, Clinics, and guidelines to subscriber institutions through web-enabled smartphones such as the iPhone, Blackberry, Treo and others.