Screening Tool

Screening Tool

The five unanimous categories that all medical reference apps should be evaluated on are:

• Authorship

• Peer review

• Update frequency

• Evidence source

• Evidence grade with explanation.

(Bender et. al, 2013; Rosser & Christopher 2011; Gibbs et al., 2017; Huckbale et al., 2012; Banzi et al., 2010; Kwag et al., 2016; Campbell et al., 2015; Shurtz& Foster et al., 2016; Butcher et al., 2015; Farrell 2008) uses the grading scale by Banzi et al., (2010). Each category will be graded out of three points: 3 points if the information was “adequate,” 1 point if the information was “unclear,” and 0 points if the information “not adequate” or “not reported”. The highest score achievable will be 15/15 (Banzi et al. 2010).


Below is an example of the screening tool:

3 points if the information was “adequate”

1 point if the information was “unclear”

0 points if the information “not adequate” or “not reported”

(2 points are not allotted in the scoring system)
(Banzi et al., 2010)



• Banzi, R., Liberati, A., Moschetti, I., Tagliabue, L., Moja, L., (2010) A Review of Online Evidence based Practice Point of Care information Summary Providers. Journal of Medical Internet Research, vol. 12., iss. 2., e26., p.1

• Bender, J. L., Yue, R. Y. K., To, M. J., Deacken, L., &Jadad, A. R. (2013). A Lot of Action, But Not in the Right Direction: Systematic Review and Content Analysis of Smartphone Applications for the Prevention, Detection, and Management of Cancer. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 15(12), e287.

• Butcher, R., MacKinnon, M., Gadd, K., & LeBlanc-Duchin, D. (2015). Development and Examination of a Rubric for Evaluating Point-of-Care Medical Applications for Mobile Devices. Medical Reference Services Quarterly, 34(1), 75–87 13p.

• Campbell, R., & Ash, J. (2006). An evaluation of five bedside information products using a user-centered, task-oriented approach. Journal of the Medical Library Association, 94(4), 435-e207.

• Farrell, A. (2008). An Evaluation of the Five Most Used Evidence Based Bedside Information Tools in Canadian Health Libraries. Evidence Based Library and Information Practice, 3(2), 3–17.

• Gibbs, J., Gkatzidou, V., Tickle, L., Manning, S. R., Tilakkumar, T., Hone, K., … Estcourt, C. S. (2017). “Can you recommend any good STI apps?” A review of content, accuracy and comprehensiveness of current mobile medical applications for STIs and related genital infections. Sex Transm Infect, 93(4), 234–235.

• Huckvale, K., Car, M., Morrison, C., & Car, J. (2012). Apps for asthma self-management: a systematic assessment of content and tools. BMC Medicine, 10, 144.

• Rosser, B.A., Eccleston, C., (2011). Smartphone applications for pain management. Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare. 17:308-312.

• Shurtz, S., Foster, M.J., (2011). Developing and using a rubric for evaltiing evidence absed medicine point of care tools. Journal of the Medical Libarary Association. DOI: 10.3163/1236-5050.99.3.012