The Advanced Digital Institute (ADI) has launched Meds Companion, a technology product, which will help patients to take their medication on time and develop an effective routine. Meds Companion is currently being trialled in the UK with Bradford City and Bradford District Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), with a view to it launching nationally next year.
It has been reported by the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) that 30% to 50% of patients may not be taking their prescribed medications correctly. By tackling the issue of Medicines Adherence, Meds Companion will contribute to the prevention of patients being admitted into acute services, and it will improve the health outcome for many patients; in turn reducing the cost to health services.
Patients will be able to download the Meds Companion App onto their smart phone, so they can record when they have taken their medicine, or alternatively use the Meds Companion smart device at home, where they press a button to confirm they have taken their medication.
The Meds Companion App and smart device is connected to the patient’s healthcare provider, who is able to track whether the patient has taken the medicine. If the medication hasn’t been taken, the patient automatically gets alerted through the device or a text message on their smart phone to remind them; and Meds Companion also alerts the healthcare professional to take immediate action, if necessary.
ADI was awarded a contract by SBRI Healthcare (the Small Business Research Initiative for Healthcare) to develop Meds Companion, and it has partnered with Arqiva, the UK communications infrastructure company, to manage the patient’s data through its Sigfox IoT (Internet of Things) network. Lloyds Pharmacy Clinical Contact Centre is also partnering with ADI to roll the product out to patients.
John Eaglesham, CEO of ADI, explained: "We're delighted to have been awarded this SBRI Healthcare contract for Meds Companion so it can now be introduced into the NHS. The combination of the latest research from Leeds University into the psychology of health behaviours and Arqiva’s new Sigfox IoT (Internet of Things) smart network means Meds Companion is more robust, convenient, and effective than previous attempts to manage Medicines Adherence proficiently through technology.
“We are very pleased to be working with Bradford City and Bradford District CCGs, and with Lloyds Pharmacy Clinical Contact Centre, to make this service available to help support people on long-term medications.”
Graham Doe, a manager at Arqiva, commented: “Meds Companion is a fantastic example of how our new low cost SIGFOX IoT (Internet of Things) network can help companies like ADI, develop innovative smart technologies, to not only help to better manage people’s medication regime, but also save costs on scare resources, like our health services. By being able to provide a clear data trail, healthcare providers and councils will be able to analyse this intelligence to adapt their public services to improve people’s lives.”
Laura Southall, Service Development manager for patient adherence and support at Lloyds Pharmacy, said: “As part of our ongoing strategy to support patients to get the most from their medicines, we are delighted to be working in conjunction with ADI and Leeds University to help develop and deliver this innovative new ‘smart’ way of providing patient support out of our clinical contact centre. Using the latest developments in technology to support regime ‘execution’ through smart learnings and event based cues, this really is an exciting development in the field of adherence.”