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Doctor or druggist? This app will tell you

Bengaluru, Jan 22, 2016, DHNS: 23:53 IST
During his recent visit to the City, the inventor proposed the idea to BMCRI officials, following which a group of six students started working on it.  file photo
A new health application designed by a medical professional will help one find if there is a need to visit the doctor based on the symptoms that he has.

Named ‘Maya,’ which stands for ‘medical advise you access’, the mobile phone application will also help one know if his condition needs medical intervention or can be managed with over-the-counter drugs. Dr Kadiyal M Srivatsa, UK-based doctor and alumnus of the Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute (BMCRI) - the brain behind the app - is of the opinion that it helps one understand the severity of his condition.

The primary idea behind the application, Dr Srivatsa said, is that one can considerably cut down on the visits to the doctor and add to the savings. This apart, the application comes in handy to reduce patient anxiety, he said.

“Asking patients to undergo unnecessary tests or repeated appointments with the doctor lead to psychological sickness. The patient might only go back anxious. Instead, by using the application, one might decide whether or not a consultation is necessary,” said Dr Srivatsa. “If used aptly, the doctor’s visits can come down by 80 per cent,” he said.

During his recent visit to the City, the inventor proposed the idea to BMCRI officials, following which a group of six students started working on it.

The application is available for both android and iphones. Initially, the app can be downloaded free of cost. On signing up, the application will ask the user to specify three symptoms. “For instance, if one has cough as one of the symptoms, the app will prompt the user to enter if it is dry cough or with phlegm. Hence, the details are specific,” he explained.

The three symptoms would be colour coded red, yellow and green. If all the three symptoms are highlighted in red, it signifies that the user must visit the hospital, if two of them are red, then one might need to see a doctor and if just one is red, a telephonic conversation would do.

The application also enables one to call or send messages to their respective doctors. Using an advanced form of the app, one could also know which doctor to chose for their illness.

Dr Srivatsa said that when a large group is using the application, it would be helpful to keep tabs on infections.

“Say for instance, many in Jayanagar report similar symptoms such as flu, the health department could keep tabs on it,” he added.

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