SonoSite this morning revealed a new scheme that lets US-registered clinicians refresh their knowledge in specific ultrasound procedures and exams using iPods.

The company intends offering instructionally rich refresher courses that use video-enabled iPods. The announcement was made from the World Congress on Ultrasound in Emergency and Critical Care Medicine being held between June 11-14 at the Jacob Javits Center in New York.

"The rising cost of healthcare demands that physicians become more efficient, particularly at the point of care. This requires that they retain an extraordinary amount of information. As a result, we see a great need for assistive tools that can fit in a lab coat pocket," said Daniel Price, MD, a staff emergency physician at Highland General Hospital in Oakland, California and director of the Emergency Ultrasound Fellowship, who also teaches at the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine.

Dr Price helped found Mobile Medical Media, a company that creates short instructional videos to teach core procedures to doctors and medical trainees.

At this week's Congress, Drs Price and Michael Stone will be presenting results from their study that examined the effectiveness of a brief bedside hand-held audio/video tutorial, used to teach emergency medicine interns and residents to identify the brachial plexus with hand-carried ultrasound for the administration of regional anesthesia in emergency situations.

Dr Price explained: "Focused, well-designed one-to-five minute tutorials can be viewed on an iPod wherever, whenever they are needed, and can bring the physician or medical student up to date, on the spot."

From June to September 2006, SonoSite customers purchasing a new MicroMaxx system will also receive a free video-enhanced iPod and two free educational video module downloads from SonoSite's global education website.