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Top 5 apps for 2017

Post date: 13/12/2016 | Time to read article: 2 mins

The information within this article was correct at the time of publishing. Last updated 14/11/2018

Dr Saba Tabish, an FY2 doctor in Wolverhampton, reviews five of the best apps for foundation doctors.

The one thing that every doctor has with them at all times is a mobile phone, and with that comes a variety of helpful apps. So far, the following apps have helped me survive my foundation years.


This is the one app that most doctors find very useful. Whether you’re on your ward during a normal day or you’re on call, the job that you will be asked to do most is prescribing. All the information that is available in a hardcopy of the British National Formulary (BNF) is present on this app, and the content is regularly revised and updated. Once all the content is downloaded, it’s accessible while offline as well. Paediatric BNF is also available for download.

Cost – Free, available on Android and iOS. An NHS Athens account is required to log in.


MicroGuide holds antimicrobial guidelines for up to 90 acute NHS trusts, community trusts, clinical commissioning groups and hospitals overseas. The content is divided into different body systems and the associated infections, with guidance on which antimicrobials to use, their doses and duration. There have been some additions to the app recently, like antibiotic dosing recommendations in renal impairment, surgical and medical prophylaxis, and useful contact numbers including the duty microbiologist, laboratories and duty pharmacist at the selected hospital.

Cost – Free, available on Android and iOS.


GreyMobile has a compilation of the clinical guidelines from St Georges’ NHS Trust, which is probably the oldest set of established medical and antimicrobial guidelines in modern medicine in the UK, having first been published in 1979. You will be able to find anything from medical emergencies like NSTEMI, and Addisonian crises, to psychiatric emergencies like Oculogyric Crisis and delirium. It is an extremely handy app to have, especially during those on-call shifts when everything seems to be going south. Of course, if there are any local guidelines for the hospital in which you are working, you must ensure these are adhered to.

Cost – Free, available on Android and iOS.


MDCalc is a clinical decisions calculator app, used worldwide, with the aim of making the tedious process of calculating scores for our patients a little smoother. The interface for this app is very pleasant, and once you are registered, it is remarkably easy to use. All the scores that are commonly used in hospitals across the UK, like CHA2DS2VASc, WELLS score, Glasgow-Blatchford score, ABCD2, and can be found on MDCalc.

Cost – Free, available on Android and iOS.


Junior doctors rotate across the region to different hospitals on a yearly basis. It can be quite a daunting prospect, walking into a new hospital, completely unfamiliar with the environment. This app makes that process slightly easier. If your hospital is on the app, you will be able to find most phone extensions that you might need, you can save door codes and can also request guidelines from your hospital to be put on there. This app is crowd-sourced, so it will only be as good as it users. Be sure to contribute if you find anything missing from your own hospital’s database.

Cost – Free, available on Android and iOS.

Find out more

  • Foundation doctors are increasingly using social media and apps to communicate with each other and senior colleagues. Read Dr Gordon McDavid’s article which outlines the potential consequences for you to consider.
  • The GMC’s app, GMP, gives you access to Good Medical Practice and other ethical guidance.

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