SHould I buy a PDA for anesthesia school?

  1. I wanted to get some advice concerning PDA's and their application in crna school. Do most srna's use them and how often? Do you feel they are a must or a luxury? And finally which one's do you recommend? I will starting school in the fall and am wondering if I should go ahead and buy one before I start school, while I can still afford it. Any other practical advice pertaining to things I should buy would be appreciated also. Thanks!!
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  2. 8 Comments

  3. by   nilepoc
    If you are going to a front loaded program, wait until clinicals start, and buy then. (just set the money aside now).

    If you have a integrated program, consider buying it now.

    I have not used mine, for more than a calculator since school started. I imaine I will use it more when clinicals start in August.
  4. by   smogmatt
    Palm OS, it seems more programs are out there (but the big name programs are available for both formats, I like the Sony Clie wish I would have bought one instead of the m500
  5. by   WntrMute2
    I use mine constantly, Visor Prism is what I bought but I sort of wish i had bought the Sony. I had trouble with seeing a black and white model it in a darkened OR so I traded for a color version. I have a couple of drug guides ( epocrates and Sota's), Med calc, Riley Kidometer, Gasworks, Barash's Clinical Anesthesia (I like the paper handbook far more), and a bunch of other generic stuff. I keep it with me always, floor calls, OB, etc but it hasn't replaced my Barash handbook and the "blue book" most schools reccomend you put together.
  6. by   MICU RN
    Thanks for the advice so far, the program I will be starting does not start clinicals until the second semester. I originally thought it was a totally front loaded program, but now I think it is more intergrated. The first semester I take two nursing type courses plus research, pharm and health assessment. It is a MSN program, the second semester is all science and has us taking physiology with the med students. But I just found out that we will be starting clinicals that semester, first one day a week, then two and up to three days which average about 8 hours per work day. It is suppose to be the make it or break it semester in this program. The program is one of the newer ones in the U.S.; I will be in their third class. However, the program does have access to resources that come with being housed in a medical center, which I think is a good thing. The biggest draw back is that it is 32 months, basically an extra semester to obtain the nursing courses to get a MSN. But it was my first and only choice because my family situation, two small children and very affordable housing, not to mention I did all my under grad. nursing at the university and I work right down the block in the main teaching hospital. Oh, I almost forgot to tell what the name of the school is, it is LSU School of Nursing and it is located in the health science center in New Orleans.
  7. by   Brenna's Dad
    Hey Anthony,

    I had the same question before starting school as you did. I am fairly adept at computers, but didn't know a thing about PDAs. In the end, I decided that I would buy a PDA a few months before starting school, and play with it a bit, so I knew how to use.

    This turned out to be a fairly successful approach. I found it pretty cool for ICU. The first semester of my program is almost purely didactic, so I haven't had a lot of time to use it clinically yet. But the address book and phone list is very handy. I also use Epocrates a bit for pharmacology. Plus, it's a very nice, although somewhat expensive calculator.

    Once I start clinicals, I'm sure it will become increasingly valuable. I'll be putting all the information for my "brain book" on my Palm and also plan to be tracking my cases.

    As for recommendations, I bought a Sony Clie as recommended here. Their price hasn't decreased all that much in the last 8 months. The Clie comes with 16 megs of memory, which is very handy and has a colour screen, which you should really get unless your budget makes that absolutely impossible. The SJ30, which I purchased, does not come with a MP3 player, but the SJ33 does. The latest Clie models come with digital cameras and all the bells and whistles, but last I checked ran in the $600+ range.

    Your other option of course is the Pocket PCs, which I know nothing about.
  8. by   KSCRNA
    Check with your program director, some programs supply PDA when you start.
  9. by   MICU RN
    Sony clie has been recommended highly by many of the residents I work with. THe one I was looking at was in the 200.00 range and has a color sreen. I will start looking around and hopefully catch it on sale some place.
  10. by   meandragonbrett
    I just purchased a Sony Clie this week. It's the Nx60. It has the color screen that you can turn around and it has a built in keyboard *I LOVE this* It's got 16mb of internal RAM (?) memory stick slot, mp3, pictures, video, and is wirless LAN capable, and it also uses the new Palm OS 5. It's on sale this week at CompUSA for 299.99. Check it out if you are currently in the market for one! I love mine!
    Brett

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