Never Forget To Take Your Meds: Cell Phone In Your Pill Bottle
Remembering, or forgetting, to take prescription drugs is an expensive problem, causing health complications that cost the healthcare system millions of dollars each year. It is often associated with older people, but I have problems remembering if I took that pill this morning.
GlowCaps was revolutionary when they released their prescription pill bottle that knows when you should take your medication back in 2009. If you fail to take a pill, the cap glows, then beeps, then beeps louder, then texts you, or calls you on the phone. The cap reports back to doctors, loved ones, and can contact your pharmacy to ask for a prescription.
In a study in 2011, GlowCaps were shown to increase drug adherance from 71% to 98% when used with a group of hypertension patients.
So problem solved right? Apparently not everyone would agree. GlowCaps work by measuring if you have opened the pill bottle or not. New startup, AdhereTech, don't think that's good enough. They have brought out a patented pill bottle that has an inbuilt sensor that measures how many pills are in your pill bottle instead.
The pill bottle uses 3G so the bottle is constantly connected to the cloud, with a 45 day long battery life, without the patient having to do anything to set it up.
Sensor technology means that the AdhereTech pill bottle is smarter than GlowCaps. It tracks and stores your data, and syncs it with data from your other health tracking devices, like a glucose monitor for instance.
AdhereTech have an open API so anyone can build an app that interacts with it's smart pill bottle. That means we could soon see apps that show how our medication impacts our heart rate, temperature, or mood.
One such application could be with Propeller, the sensor for tracking Asthma medication. They might be able to integrate with AdhereTech, so you can see how taking medication for high blood pressure, or allergies for example, impacts your need to use Asthma inhalers throughout the day.
AdhereTech sounds really exciting! What kind of apps would you like to see built?