A successful medical Smartphone app for healthcare professionals to share photos is being rolled out further across Western Europe within the next few weeks.
The app, which is dubbed ‘Instagram for Doctors’ due to its similarities to the photo sharing app, is proving popular with doctors and patients in the US and the UK since its release a year ago.
Figure 1 is a community app for medical and nursing professionals and is designed to safely share clinical pictures and discuss treatments with their patients, each other and medical students.
So far, more than 150,000 doctors have uploaded case photos with the patient's identity obscured.
However, some experts have expressed concern about patient confidentiality.
Patients' faces are automatically blanked out by the app but users have to manually block identifying marks like tattoos.
Each photo is reviewed by moderators before it is added to the database.
Here are some reasons why Figure 1 can benefit both health care professional and patients:
- It helps medical students visualise conditions that they never get to see in practice.
- Helps increase the medical knowledge and learn about diseases.
- Diagnosis illnesses and conditions without the hassle of attending and waiting for an appointment with your GP as waiting times for an appointment at your local surgery can currently be up to two weeks.
- To solve any patient privacy issues, Figure 1 will automatically block out the face of any patient that appears within the photo. In addition to this, doctors are free to paint over any identifiable markings on the patient, such as tattoos. So you don’t have to worry about privacy issues.
- To avoid any negative opinions sneaking into the system, a qualified doctor must prove their credentials before gaining privileges within the app. Medical students are also being given access to use the app.
You can download the Figure 1 app free from the Google play store or from iTunes.
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