Digital Health & Medication Adherence | PDD


May 3 2018
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Digital Health & Medication Adherence

A review of digital design, service solutions, strategies, processes and approaches, such as Human-Centered Design, that medical device and pharma companies can use to control the business risk associated with medication adherence.

There is no shortage of statistics and studies related to the issue of patients not adhering to their medication regime – from high drop-out rates for specific prescription regimes, increased suffering and mortality risk, to the huge financial burden on the healthcare system and payers. The latter fact is hard to ignore; for the US alone according to a 2012 study, direct costs for medication non-adherence is estimated to be as much as $300 billion dollars annually.

Fortunately, ample awareness of this issue has fuelled entrepreneurs, companies and providers to develop new ways to improve adherence such as low to hi-tech organised pill boxes, some integrating wireless technology and the many mobile device apps to help patients to stick to a regime. There is a growing array of design guidance for building effective medication reminders that support the daily routines of the consumer.

Given the business risk of less-thanexpected sales and payers’ scrutiny of drugs associated with adherence problems, pharma companies are, unsurprisingly, engaged with this issue also. This engagement varies from joining patient groups and industry forums to better understand the issue, to integrating electronic monitoring capabilities in their drug delivery devices, to helping develop cutting-edge adherence technologies such as the Proteus smartpill system.

Part-funded by Novartis, the Proteus smartpill system comprises of miniature ingestible sensors embedded in pills that send signals wirelessly to a body-worn patch when swallowed – removing any doubt that someone has taken their medication…

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