It’s time to get Scrub’d up! Order now. 

by Dr. Rashmira Balasuriya 


How did doctors survive prior to easy access phone applications? I don’t have a clue. I cannot for a second imagine surviving my job without these apps. They really do make working as a doctor much more efficient. Drug formulary apps make it easier to quickly find out the appropriate drug for a condition and the dose to be given. Reference apps make sure you’re not shell shocked when your consultant diagnoses a patient with a disease you have no clue about.

  • Medscape

This app is my go to reference for absolutely any medical condition. Registration is free and it has easy reading articles on probably every single condition out there. Another thing I like is that the articles are very easily organised according to their clinical presentation, it gives you differential diagnosis, a work up of the investigations required (especially beneficial when you’re a lost intern) and the management. The only downside is that there are some articles that require access through their webpage and these are not available on the application. The registration gives you access online to their website as well so no worries. In addition to the reference article, there are more articles on the latest guidelines, drugs available and new links found.


The British National Formulary (BNF) is every medical student and junior doctor’s go to book, especially in the UK when you have to sit the prescribing skills assessment in your final year and need to know this book at your finger tips. The most challenging thing about the BNF book is that it’s not easy to find a drug, especially when you need to go into the index which takes some time. Now when this was converted into a FREE phone app you cannot imagine my excitement! The app is very user friendly and in addition to having the adult formulary, you can also switch between the paediatric version on the same app. Super easy! All the indications, contraindications, adverse effects, etc can be found similarly to that in the book. Love love love this app! Has made my life very easy!

  • Neomate

This has been super useful when working in the Neonatal intensive care unit because it helps you figure out the fluids, the drug doses and even the endotracheal tube size/tube length by just simply entering the body weight of the baby. It’s very useful because it also provides you with all the emergency drug doses for that baby’s specific body weight. There are also useful checklists and quick reference guidelines for easy access.

  • Google translate


Working in a predominantly sinhalese speaking area means that I really needed to get with the sinhalese medical terms which was initially my biggest challenge as an intern. I mean I can talk basic sinhalese, but having spoken and learnt in english my entire life many of my patients thought I was a foreigner because of my different accent. Learning the correct sinhalese terms eventually made this easier especially helping me to relate to my patients and co-workers.

It’s not always a 100% accurate with the local lingo so double check with a colleague! This application has also really helped me when explaining certain conditions to patients and even counselling parents about their children’s condition. It also has a speaking part so you can hear the proper pronunciation of the word.

P.s. this is also a great tool when travelling.




  • img_3251Instagram

I mean. If you don’t already know, I am obsessed with instagram. Don’t worry, it’s a healthy addiction (said all addicts going down-hill).

I don’t just use it for stalking celebrities contrary to popular belief, but I have found some great medical accounts and had my mind blown more than a few times what with all the abscess popping and trauma pics.

Medscape has a great new instagram account and their feed consists of short concise pieces on the latest vaccines, drugs and treatments. Medschool posts also upload some great gory pics which really make me miss trauma and emergency surgery.

Social media has it’s downside, but I’ve had quite a few learning moments from it interacting with fellow users so give it a try. It’s a serious stress relief for me!


I’m always on the look out for more medical apps so if you have any suggestions please do let me know and if you aren’t already, follow me on instagram @scribblingsofamedic for more of my day to day life as a medic!

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Hi there!

Hi there! Dr. Rashmira Balasuriya is a medical doctor in Sri Lanka, currently training in Family Medicine. Navigating the healthcare system in Sri Lanka is no easy task and this website was created to help guide other foreign medical graduates and junior doctors. This website also helps demystify life as a doctor in Sri Lanka and also combats medical misinformation circulating amongst the general public!