The success story of HemoSurf

HemoSurf is an interactive learning program featuring over 3000 images of blood and bone marrow smears. It is the most extensive collection of haematological images on CD-ROM and on the internet. In addition, the image quality has been rated as above average. The images can be accessed in two ways. First, they are imbedded in a didactic learning concept which step-by-step teaches the user to interpret images of the blood; second, a gallery in which over 60 different images of blood, some with associated bone marrow smears, can be viewed. In addition, the laboratory data for all clinical pictures can be called up. Over 100 items of context-specific theoretical knowledge are also provided. The chapter on laboratory technology includes video sequences on producing and dying blood smears and testing the sedimentation rate.

The target users are medical students, doctors in postgraduate training programmes (especially in internal medicine or haematology), practicing doctors and students training to become medical laboratory technicians and physician’s assistants.

The original German version of HemoSurf, which was only available online, was released in 1997. HemoSurf was first available on CD-ROM in 1999. In the same year it was translated into English, and in 2000 into French. Version 2.0, which features all three languages, was released in 2001. Since then HemoSurf has become a standard learning programme in Swiss laboratory training institutes. HemoSurf is used throughout the world, as evidenced by pictures from Kabul and Benin. Over 7000 copies of HemoSurf on CD-ROM have been sold.

However, HemoSurf is starting to show its age in terms of technology and layout. A comprehensive revision is planned,  although dates for the revision have not been set.

Left: Students from Kabul receive instruction using the HemoSurf learning programme.
Left: Students from Kabul receive instruction in morphological haematology using the HemoSurf learning programme.
University of Bern | Institute of Medical Education | Konsumstrasse 13 | CH-3010 Bern | +41 (0)31 632 35 73