Diagnosing and prescribing the right medicine is only part of the challenge for physicians working with patients suffering from chronic illnesses. Of equal importance is patient compliance. Especially for patients who must take a number of different pills, inhalers or injections, the complexities of remembering when and what to take too often leads to accidentally missed doses, which can interfere with the recovery process or pain maintenance.
Now, Israeli company, Vaica Medical, claims it has the answer. The company, which has developed a number of technologies to boost patient compliance, has launched a new product, Capsuled, a medication dispenser which uses visual and audio prompts to alert patients and update caregivers.
Capuseled, which was launched this month, can include personal messages timed to encourage patients to take their meds, and educational videos showing what to do.
Capsuled is beginning clinical studies at one of the largest private hospital chains in Italy. The evaluation will also involve Telecare H24, a provider of telemedicine services. Three sets of patients will be part of the study: those with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), Cardiac Heart Disease (CHD) and Diabetes Mellitus (DM).
Capsuled can hold different types of medications – it’s not just for pill dispensing. The Italian studies will use a variety of inhalers from several pharmaceutical brands, including AstraZeneca and Symbicort. The Capsuled dispenser can identify a specific medication’s ID and it tracks drug intake from the inhaler, time stamps, refills and adherence data.
Capsuled is “an improved solution, based on our validated FDA and CE approved technology,” Tomer Gofer, Vaica’s CEO, said in a news release.
Capsuled follows on from Vaica’s flagship product, the SmartMed medication dispenser, which uses visual and auditory alerts to remind patients to take a pill. It is already in use around the world, including at McGill University Health Centre in Canada, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, and HMOs such as Israel’s Maccabi Healthcare Services and Santa Helena Brazil.
Update: A clinical trial led by the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre in Montreal found that teen and young-adult kidney transplant recipients who used Vaica Medical’s SimpleMed, a digital health, medication management and adherence solution, in combination with coaching, had 66% higher adherence to anti-rejection medicine. The study was published on March 27, 2018 in the American Journal of Kidney Disease.