MedShr is an international, award-winning medical education platform that has been created for healthcare professionals (HCPs) to discuss, learn, teach, and (to a lesser degree) network with one another.
MedShr was founded in 2014 by Cardiologist Dr Asif Qasim and, since then, has garnered a user base of over 2.5 million HCPs around the world. The company holds over 200 partnerships internationally with its educational platform, including Health Education England and specific NHS trusts. So just what is MedShr?
MedShr is an online platform that is accessible for free via website (https://en.medshr.net) or smartphone app (Google Play and Apple Store). Signing up is quick and easy, taking a few seconds to determine identifying information such as occupation (doctor, nurse, dentist, other HCP), grade of training, place of work, specialty, and subspecialty interests. For ENT, all the classic subspecialties are present as expected. This information is then used to determine the posts you see on your ‘Posts’ page.
Figure 1. MedShr’s ENT Group and example of
case-based discussion with polling options.
Posts can be found along the top of the web browser or bottom of your mobile app. Here you will find an evolving page of clinical images (Figure 1), quizzes, case-based discussions, and polls that have been ‘posted’ by other HCPs to stimulate discussion and learning from simple to more complex cases. If you feel brave and contribute enough, you will be awarded six CPD points. In fact, HEE have designated teaching fellows that post regularly on MedShr to teach medical students or engage doctors and continue medical education. Interesting posts can be ‘followed’ to keep up with other people’s comments. Posts alternatively can be shared privately and also downloaded to be added in your own portfolio for annual reviews or reflections.
“HEE have designated teaching fellows that post regularly on MedShr to teach medical students or engage doctors and continue medical education”
Much of the power of the post feature comes with the potential to gain multiple expert opinions on a case immediately. With that said, discretion will need to be used as to the expertise/qualification of the commenter. A partial solution to this problem could be to change the privacy of the post to include only known colleagues, or a trusted expert group.
Figure 2. Patient consent within the app.
Figure 3. Joining a new ENT group to share information.
Where confidentiality may be an issue, an in-app consent form requires signing by the patient before posting (Figure 2). This ‘telemedical MDT’ would also be of benefit in resource-poor, or isolated settings where medical expertise may be scarce, as demonstrated by its use in the 2015 European refugee crisis (https://en.medshr.net/open/techfugees-a-tech-community-response-to-the).
Networking and groups
Public and private groups may be joined to discuss cases, such as junior doctors in a local department for weekly teaching, specialty trainees within a region, or an international group of otolaryngologists for discussing difficult cases. You can follow individuals within these groups to see what they have posted. Only a handful of ENT-specific groups exist at the moment.
This section has e-modules for mandatory training or subspecialty learning with related certificates and CPD/CME points. There are also modules containing links to seminars from past conferences here.
DocSearch (paid feature)
Although this does not appear to be the main function of MedShr, it is there on the online website. MedShr describes DocSearch as a search engine of medical databases with added AI for insights and analysis.
Figure 4. Seminar learning and links to videos.
MedShr is a growing network of HCPs with an ever-expanding knowledge base. It is free to join, and regularly updated by fellows (even in ENT!). If you want to engage with interesting cases over a quick cup of coffee, love a good spot diagnosis, or want to get more opinions on an unusual case, then this app could be for you.