Students of Medicine should be made aware of the power of Internet and how it can be used in their favor.

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26 Jul 2016 - General

This is a time when we see that the Internet, which was earlier considered to be a medium of e'mailing, sharing photographs, filling forms etc, is fastly becoming or perhaps has become a vast store of knowledge for any field and not only the IT crowd. Of course there are some issues concerning authenticity of any information. But that can be more or less countered by trying to find same piece of information on multiple websites and particularly on reliable ones. 

I would like to propose to the educators of our new generation of students of medicine, that let them start telling the pupil that Internet can in fact be used to get such information, and that too at a lightening speed, which is seldom found in books or locally generated reports.

Now a days;

There are online libraries which allow their members, on a very nominal fee, to access all sorts of reaearch data and save your time as well as a possibility of banging your head over it.

There are such websites as this MIMS Community or Docplexus or Ciplamed or quite a few similar ones which are providing doctors with a social networking framework to react on or share information which is worthwhile for their clinical growth.

There are websites like WebMD or Emedicine which are constantly providing challenging clinical cases to nourish your grey matter.

There are websites, and numerous in number,  which allow you to join their CMEs either without any cost or upon a very small fee.

There are webcasts to deliver lectures. There are interactive webinars to teach you even with ongoing clarification of your doubts regarding the material.

All thse things can provide the students of medicine to get a virtual teacher out of Internet. Yes the issue of their authenticity is always a concern and the possibility of misguidance is omnipresent. There are open source websites like Wikipedia which can be edited by anyone or there are closed source websites which have their own network to check the authenticity of the papers published. Here comes the role of our educators, to filter the channels and give their pupil the ones which they in fact themselves regard to be authentic.

I will be happy if this article reaches the faculties of our medical schools and even if few of them try to incorporate it in their agenda.

I got my formal medical education in Ukraine and Kyrgyzstan (both of them Russian speaking countries which were part of USSR long ago). Of course the language barrier (although I am a fluent user of Russian language and sometimes literally spoke better than the natives) was always present and the alienity of a foreigner being present within locals was messing things up with the patient group as there are a lot of people who are not this broad minded to not mind it. I can say that if within the hundred percent which could have been taught, they could give me around thirty percent only. Rest of whatever twenty thirty or fourty percent I have gained to succeed in clinical practice is largely due to the above stated facts. 

Reader's reactions will be appreciated, whatever they could be.

Yes, would totally agree that internet is a very useful resource for medical students. Maybe we are moving forwards from the traditional medical textbook to online medical information. There are a lot of great clinical medical websites either free or paid, for the medical students to use it. Most of the latest guideline for certain medical condition will be available online. Just for an example, British Society of Gastroenterology does publish a variety of latest gastroenterology related guideli...
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Just like how Wikipedia is not an accredited source of academic reference, non-validated information hosting sites have difficulty in gaining general or board consensus on its authenticity.
I guess the landscape remains where the expanse of Interest is too vast, and the information each portal carries are too diverse, it is hardly possible any single disciplinary board of academia can validate. Moreover with differing regulation in different countries, some informational sites are not discr...
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