Nursing Constellation...Yay or Nay?!? - page 2

Hi all, I am going to be purchasing a Palm T|X very soon, and have been researching all the various nursing and medical programs, as well as where and how to buy them. It seems as if the Nursing... Read More

  1. by   catlvr
    Yes, I use it all the time...I'm almost 40, so as an "elderly student" :spin: I need to have information written down! The Nursing Constellation has links between programs, and that is tremendously helpful. I like the search capabilities and having everything right in my pocket, rather than lugging a bunch of books. I checked out a lot of different free programs, but finally decided to spring for the Constellation for the security that it would all work together seamlessly; I haven't regretted the decision. Sometime you get what you pay for! Oh, I also bought Nursing Fast Facts, another great program.

    Quote from cinqly
    Glad to hear you like it. So, in your classes/clinicals, do you really use the PDA drug guide a lot? Do you think it is faster than flipping around in the book? And, do you think the features of having a PDA are just more handy? (such as calculators, easy reference to other programs, etc.).
  2. by   Cinqly
    Quote from Scrubz
    I just bought Nursing Constellation and I'll say that it's great. Very helpful so far and it's so easy to find info. I also bought Taber's and it's great too.

    So if you have the money, buy them both.
    Awesome. Thanks for the advice everyone!
  3. by   fishchick72
    It's a good price, but a bunch of the stuff it comes with you'll never use, like the ICD-9 & I think the RN notes are a waste of time. I think "nursing central" from unbound is a better deal, you pay a little more, but it comes with more stuff & it's all stuff you will use.
  4. by   fragino
    I've been trying out Skyscape, Unbound and Epocrates. I've also been looking through the rest of the forums to see which software seems be used the most. I know that the needs of a starting student like myself would be different from one who is just starting to work as a nurse, to one who has been working for awhile in the same place to one who travels and would not know what assignment they would have from day to day and of course the lucky ones that have about 100 years of experience and can remember everything they ever read. The two programs that seems to be mentioned the most is Tabers Medical Encylopedia and Davis Drug Guide. So I at least wanted both of those.

    Epocrates suite (the one you have to pay for) is very complete but seems to be more suited to MDs and APNs.

    Skyscape, at this time, offers the PDA and desktop version for one price. It's only about $90 but you have to buy the Tabers separately.

    Unbound is about $150 but it comes with the Tabers. It does not come with a desktop version but it does come with a one year web subscription so that you can access the web version online.

    I'm leaning towards the Unbound because I don't have a laptop to lug around anymore and even if I did, I'm not sure I would like to carry it all over the place along with all the books. With the Unbound I can access the web version from any computer like at the school library, and cut and paste information to a word document or care plan form that I can store on my USB key or email to myself. I also like the interface of the Unbound as opposed to Skyscape. Unbound like Epocrates has one interface for all the programs. Skyscape created a different icon for each of the publications I downloaded to try out. As for the worth of the other programs, I'm still not quite sure yet.

    Still the price for all of them is pretty steep so I'm still thinking about it until I can afford to buy any of them...if ever.
  5. by   Cinqly
    Quote from fragino
    I've been trying out Skyscape, Unbound and Epocrates. I've also been looking through the rest of the forums to see which software seems be used the most. I know that the needs of a starting student like myself would be different from one who is just starting to work as a nurse, to one who has been working for awhile in the same place to one who travels and would not know what assignment they would have from day to day and of course the lucky ones that have about 100 years of experience and can remember everything they ever read. The two programs that seems to be mentioned the most is Tabers Medical Encylopedia and Davis Drug Guide. So I at least wanted both of those.

    Epocrates suite (the one you have to pay for) is very complete but seems to be more suited to MDs and APNs.

    Skyscape, at this time, offers the PDA and desktop version for one price. It's only about $90 but you have to buy the Tabers separately.

    Unbound is about $150 but it comes with the Tabers. It does not come with a desktop version but it does come with a one year web subscription so that you can access the web version online.

    I'm leaning towards the Unbound because I don't have a laptop to lug around anymore and even if I did, I'm not sure I would like to carry it all over the place along with all the books. With the Unbound I can access the web version from any computer like at the school library, and cut and paste information to a word document or care plan form that I can store on my USB key or email to myself. I also like the interface of the Unbound as opposed to Skyscape. Unbound like Epocrates has one interface for all the programs. Skyscape created a different icon for each of the publications I downloaded to try out. As for the worth of the other programs, I'm still not quite sure yet.

    Still the price for all of them is pretty steep so I'm still thinking about it until I can afford to buy any of them...if ever.
    If you have a PDA, why would you need to lug a laptop around?? I thought the whole point was to have a small, light device that does the work of a big computer and piles of books! :wink2: That aside, thanks for the input. What device do you have, if you don't mind my asking??
  6. by   Elizabeth Hanes
    Quote from cinqly
    If you have a PDA, why would you need to lug a laptop around?? I thought the whole point was to have a small, light device that does the work of a big computer and piles of books! :wink2:
    I'm not the person who posted the original comment, but...

    I should be receiving my Palm TX in the mail any day, yet I still plan to lug my laptop with me. Why? I can think of at least 2 good reasons, actually:

    1. Writing papers. Yeah, I know you can get a keyboard for the Palm, but I've gone that route years ago (with an old Handspring), and I found it highly unsatisfactory. For one thing, I find it hard to read the screen of a PDA when I'm typing. For another thing, the formatting didn't always translate perfectly when I synched to my PC. I find it much more convenient to type my papers on an "old fashioned" laptop.

    2. Research. Again, I know my Palm will have wireless capabilities, but (also again) the screen is really small. It's much more efficient for me to set up my laptop in the library and access all the resources I need for performing research.

    Yes, my Palm will replace a couple (stress "couple") of the books I use in nursing school, and it will come in especially handy on the floor during clinicals. But that doesn't mean it will replace my laptop or all my textbooks. Oh, I wish!

    PS -- Which software package did you decide to go with? I've decided to get Nursing Central from Unbound. I think it offers more of what I need than Constellation, though I think it's really a matter of personal preference.
  7. by   Cinqly
    Semisweetchick,

    Thanks for your comments. Just to clarify, I'm not against lugging around a laptop. But, unless you're writing papers (i.e. going to class, clinicals, or at work), then it doesn't make much sense to take a laptop around with you. It can't be beat for portability, but I was just wondering why the poster would be interested in carrying all three around for reference. I also take my laptop around for papers and research, as the PDA isn't much good for heavy-input. I only wish it was!!! Wouldn't that be nice! But for easy reference, the PDA beats carrying around a laptop and 20 pounds of books! :wink2:

    As for which program I will choose, I think I am going to contact my school and double check what they will be using. If I were to buy a program today, though, I would get the skyscape nursing constellation.
  8. by   fragino
    I carry a Dell X51v. I have an 8 gig microdrive installed in it. I opted for capacity and lost a little bit of speed and battery life. Like the others said, there's nothing like a laptop to do research and papers on the go. I'm tempted to buy a folding keyboard for the PDA but the screen is still to small to do any heavy duty editing. I bought the PDA mostly for the clinicals where the portability should hopefully become really useful.
  9. by   jms79
    Tim do you have the code for nursing central from unbound medicine. Ive been comparing both unbound and skyscape. I saw your post about the registering of the palm received a code and when I wanted to checkout they said code doesnt exist. Thanks
  10. by   Cinqly
    Quote from jms79
    Tim do you have the code for nursing central from unbound medicine. Ive been comparing both unbound and skyscape. I saw your post about the registering of the palm received a code and when I wanted to checkout they said code doesnt exist. Thanks
    There is not a special code for everyone to use. What Tim's saying is that after you purchase your Palm device and register it, they send you an e-mail with a coupon for 20% off software and accessories. This is a one-time offer, and is an incentive to register your device. The code would be specific to only one person/purchase.
  11. by   jms79
    I know that I was saying my code didnt work and palm didnt answer my question either so I thought maybe he knew a code
  12. by   Cinqly
    Quote from jms79
    I know that I was saying my code didnt work and palm didnt answer my question either so I thought maybe he knew a code
    Well, I suppose it was worth a shot!:wink2:
  13. by   midcom
    Quote from cinqly
    If you have a PDA, why would you need to lug a laptop around?? I thought the whole point was to have a small, light device that does the work of a big computer and piles of books! :wink2: That aside, thanks for the input. What device do you have, if you don't mind my asking??
    I'm sorry, I just realized that this post was probably aimed at me. Semisweetchick probably answered it as well as I could but I'll elaborate.

    I don't literally lug my laptop to class but have taken it a few times with me to the library when studying. When I need to write papersor look somehtingup that I don't understand, resources are right there. If I'm taking notes, I can cut & paste instead of looking it up in a book or my PDA & typing out what I read. I too find reading from that tiny screen annoying when it's for a long time. It's OK when I need to look things up quickly, just not for extended lengths of time.

    Let me give you an example where my laptop came in really handy. Tomorrow we have 20 med cards due. Our instructor is making it kind of easy for us but we still need to include drug's generic & trade name, classification, a few SE's, interactions, common dosage, & nursing considerations. My classmates had to dig through their drug books & type or write out each one. I, however, opened up my Davis Drug guide, typed in the drug name & "poof" everything was right there for me to cut & paste into the program I was using to make my cards. I didn't have to worry about possibly making a dumb mistake while writing down all the dosage information. I know it's right.

    Now, I could have done the same with my PDA but I'd still have had to write it all out. Do I still need or want my PDA? You bet ya! Last week in clinicals, I was assigned to pass meds. However, that meant I had to know everything about each med I passed before I could give it. Guess where my PDA was? In my car! I had to use the facility's drug book & it took me forever to find each drug & write down all I needed to know. If I had remembered to bring it in, all I'd had to do was open Davis Drug guide, type in the name & there would be my info. With the book, I think I spent more time finding the drug names than actually reading the information.

    This week, my job is to supervise a few of my classmates but I promise you that my PDA will be in my pocket anyway. If my med passers have trouble, they know who to go to for help. One of them will have the same resident I had last week & she'll be looking up 10 dfferent meds. I happen to know that 2 of them were not in the book we use but are in Davis. She will need help & I'll be there for her.

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