“Apps, Phones and Tabs” the Role of Technology in Bedside Teaching

LC Hughes1, *, M Malahias2
1 Department of Plastic Surgery, Whiston Hospital, Liverpool, UK
2 Department of Plastic Surgery, Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust, UK

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Creative Commons License
© Hughes and Malahias; Licensee Bentham Open

open-access license: This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial 4.0 International Public License (CC BY-NC 4.0) (, which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Plastic Surgery, Whiston Hospital, Liverpool, UK L35 5DR; Tel: + 44(0)1244366265; Fax: +44(0)1244366265; E-mail:


Bedside teaching is a mainstay of medical education. The development of clinical and practical skills, the use of patient centered care and the team approach cannot be underestimated, although bedside teaching has seen a decline over the recent period. This is possibly due to a combination of patient embarrassment, the pressure placed on doctors to maximize patient treatment time and shorten their stay in hospital, and the recognized effect on training by the European Working Time Directive.

Technology has strongly influenced the development of medicine over the ages, and since the introduction of mobile technology, it has advanced dramatically over the last two decades. The ease of access to a worldwide source of medical opinion has meant that education for both doctors and patients can be hand held and ever present, including at the bedside, with smartphones and tablet computers now an integral part of modern day life.

This review will focus on the potential role and ability of the app to modernise a traditional teaching method, both for the junior doctor and medical student and for the impact on patient education.

Keywords: Bedside teaching, App, Mobile technology, Education.