A Glasgow junior doctor has developed a free antibiotic guidelines app for GPs.
Dr Sam Leighton recently launched GP Antibiotics for iPhone and Android with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.
The app is an official collaboration with the health board’s prescribing team and infectious diseases consultant Dr Andrew Seaton, who developed the primary care prescribing guidelines for Glasgow.
The app provides empirical guidance for antibiotic prescribing in primary care for all the common infections in adults and childhood. It has been distributed around GPs in Glasgow and downloaded nearly 8,000 times worldwide.
Dr Leighton, who works in Greenock, told EHI he got into programming at university and feels that he has a unique insight into developing technology for frontline clinicians. While he does the android coding, his colleague Michael Park does the iOS version.
“I’m in a good position because I understand the medicine well and I understand the programming better than most people,” he said.
He wanted to develop an app for antibiotic guidelines because the information is usually displayed on posters in hospitals and GP surgeries, which are not available when clinicians are on the move such as GPs doing home visits.
While every health board develops its own antibiotic guidelines and Dr Leighton’s app uses the Glasgow guidelines, they are fundamentally the same and therefore transferable across regions.
A number of downloads so far have been by clinicians in India and the US and on average 200 people use it every day.
His GP antibiotics app has already hit the top 10 iPhone UK medical apps and top 100 Android UK medical apps and he is planning a ‘paediatric tool kit’ app next.
Dr Leighton is also interested in global antibiotic resistance and plans to analyse the usage of the app worldwide to make some comparisons to global antibiotic usage and perhaps resistance.