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Inspira Life tackling medication compliance with MedaCube

NJBIZ - 1/4/2019

In an effort to increase medication adherence and reduce adverse events among its senior population, Vineland-based Inspira Life recently adopted the MedaCube medication pill dispensing system from PharmAdva.According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 3.8 billion prescriptions are written annually in the U.S. Roughly one in five are never filled and among those that are, approximately 50 percent are taken incorrectly, particularly with regard to timing, dosage, frequency and duration.

Direct health care costs associated with nonadherence, according to the CDC, has grown to approximately $100 billion-$300 billion of health care dollars spent annually.

In an effort to increase medication adherence and reduce adverse events among its senior population, Vineland-based Inspira Life recently adopted the MedaCube medication pill dispensing system from PharmAdva.

Inspira Life is a national program of all-inclusive care for the elderly (PACE). The health plan offers an integrated and proactive approach for providing health care needs for seniors 55 and older that are clinically eligible. The program’s goal is to keep seniors living independently and safely by combining center-based care with home care.

Utilizing touch-screen technology, the MedaCube has the capacity to store a 90-day supply of up to 16 different medications. It is equipped with preprogrammed medication doses, schedules and the names and contact information of family members and caregivers.

Once programmed, an alarm sounds when it is time to take the medication. The patient touches a “Dispense Pills” button on the screen. If the button is not pushed the medications are not dispensed and a message saying the medication hasn’t been taken is sent to caregivers or family members via text, phone or email.

The system can be customized so a family member’s recorded voice can be loaded into MedaCube and the patient is reminded to take their meds from someone familiar.

Unused meds are stored in a bin so they cannot accidently be taken and health care professionals can track the medication.

Dr. Ankur Patel, medical director for the Inspira Life program, said that in addition to increasing compliance, the dispensing system has resulted in a decrease of wasted medications.

“In the past we would see a pile of unused medications at a patient’s house,” he said.

Prior to adopting MedaCube, the compliance rates ranged from 20 percent to 40 percent. Now, they are over 90 percent, he said.

Patel said a major problem for many seniors is though they intend to take their meds, memory impairment prevents them from doing so, or they take them, don’t remember they did and double-up.

“For these patients, adverse events are a common occurrence,” Patel said. “If ADEs were a disease, it would be the fourth-leading cause of death.”

Patel said he expects to add at least another six MedaCube users early next year to the nine already using it. Copyright 2018 BridgeTower Media. All Rights Reserved.

CREDIT: Anthony Vecchione

 
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