13 May 2019
Elucid mHealth launches smart pill bottle to monitor patient adherence
- Physically dispenses a pill when patients respond to reminder
- Reminders by text or phone call if pill is not dispensed
- Provides the doctor with comprehensive data on patient’s adherence pattern
- First clinical trial successfully concluded with major CRO
Elucid mHealth has developed a smart pill dispensing solution called Pill Connect which will allow both trial investigators and doctors to effectively monitor medication adherence, either in clinical trials or in the community. Elucid is already in discussions with several top tier Pharma, CROs, CMOs, and the NHS all of whom all keen to find effective ways to monitor patient adherence. The first clinical trial undertaken by a global CRO with healthy people has just concluded. The trial showed that the system worked very well.
How the system works
- Preparation - A patient has an app loaded onto their mobile phone (iPhone or android) which contains the pill regime – eg twice a day. Patient is trained how to use the app – 20 minutes - and given a Pill Connect bottle loaded with pills
- Patient use -The patient receives a reminder to take a pill via the app at a particular time. The patient responds to the reminder and a pill is dispensed and the data sent to a control centre.
- Non – adherence - If the patient does not respond a text or call can be made automatically or manually to prompt adherence.
- Comprehensive data - The doctor or administrator has comprehensive data on each patients dispensing pattern
- Safety - The bottle is locked outside the prescribed times to prevent double dosing
The Pill Connect dispenser mechanism and electronics are designed to fit onto a standard pill bottle which is easily filled or refilled by a pharmacist. The capacity of the pill bottle will depend upon the pill size but will have a minimum of thirty pills. The dispensing mechanism can be adjusted to handle pill/capsules of different sizes.
This study was the first real-world test of the Pill Connect solution. The patient acceptance and technical robustness study assessed 10 subjects using two Pill Connect bottles over 13 days. The baseline dose for the study was twice a day, morning and evening, but this was escalated, remotely, up to 12 pills a day using the Pill Connect system. There was also a test of the remote locking system, with five subjects having their bottles locked remotely for three doses before continuing their dosing.
The report back from the CRO found that the trial found that 91% of doses (486 capsules) from the Pill Connect bottles were dispensed successfully, with 97% of dispenses delivering the correct quantity of medication. Furthermore, 98% of all successful dispenses were successfully received on the remote monitoring system. 100% of the trial subjects found the Pill Connect bottle easy to use.
Elucid CEO, James Burnstone, commented, “We are very pleased with the results of our first real-world trial, which show that we have an effective device which subjects find easy to use and beneficial. While a couple of technical glitches were found, which prevented the system achieving 100%, they have been easily resolved.”
The company has had a great deal of interest in the system and is in discussion with a number of Pharma, CROs, and CMOs. Several consultants in the NHS are very keen to use the Pill Connect system to improve adherence particularly with patients on expensive or critical medications.