The Best Pill Dispenser, for Seniors
RxPense is an integrated, intelligent and connected medication management and remote patient monitoring system. With over 4.5 billion prescriptions filled annually in North America alone, the RxPense has been designed to help seniors, chronic care patients and also people with complex medication regimes increase their medication adherence.
In the USA alone, medication non-compliance is a $300 Billion annual cost representing up to 10% of total health care costs.
Similar devices exist, including DoMedic’s Do-Pill and Hero Health’s Hero devices, Philips Healthcare’s medication dispenser, DayaMed’s MedPod and Vaica’s SimpleMed+, but the impressive RxPense solution manages to compare very favorably against all of them.
RxPense Medication Management Hub
Of the machines mentioned, RxPense is the only one that supports industry standard pharmaceutical packaging, so right there it has a huge advantage over the competition. Top multidose blister pack brands like DisPill, Distrimedic or recyclable Eco-Pill, which can hold up to 15 medications per dose, 4 times daily for 7 days, are filled by a pharmacist who then has the pharmacy deliver the pills to a patient’s residence, long term care facility or retirement home. Some larger institutions even have their own onsite pharmacist and still others use an automated robot filling station, SynMed, to fulfill each blister package 24x7. Once received, the medications can be loaded into the RxPense by the pharmacy’s agent/delivery person or even the patient’s primary caregiver. The large 7" touch screen guides you through the simple process.
It’s important to note that the RxPense Hub remains at the patient’s domicile and that the medications are sealed in the industry standard packaging, supplied at no additional cost by the pharmacy. With some machines, like the Do-Pill, the pill dispensing devices need to be taken to the pharmacy to be filled. Some of the other machines require you to purchase special cups and lids to contain the pills every time you go to refill them. You can expect to pay up to $12 for packaging alone every time you refill the Philips Healthcare’s medication dispensing device. That’s an expense that’s just not necessary.
A major downside to using pill dispensing devices is you often have to wait quite some time to have them refilled. Some force you to wait around a pharmacy while a pharmacist takes care of programming and filling the machine, while others make you manually sort through pills and fill each container in the device yourself and, in doing so, you assume the risk of not getting the pills in the right containers in the right quantities. MedPod users have things even worse, because physicians need to make online orders for their patients who end up getting the machine and pill packs shipped to them by FedEx. On the plus side, reordering is automated, but you still have to insert the packaged medications yourself. RxPense users don’t have to worry about any of this and can have their machines loaded with new pills in no time at all. Someone just needs to insert pre-sorted DisPill or Eco-Pill packs. The whole process is similar to installing an ink cartridge in a printer, only simpler.
The pill packs that go into the RxPense come to the patient hermetically sealed and they remain that way until it’s time for the patient to consume them. This means that there’s no risk of contamination. You don’t have that same assurance when you’re dealing with the other machines, because some of them require either a pharmacist or a consumer to handle them and their containers before they’re ingested. One of the major mistakes commonly made is placing a medication in the wrong cup or pouch. It is also common to place too many or too few, resulting in serious consequences. The packaging used exclusively by RxPense is the only one certified by the pharmacist when sealed.
Most pill dispensers release pills in a sequential manner but we all know life is not that simple. The RxPense can release any dose or group of doses at any time. If a dose is spread across 2 pouches because the pills won’t fit into only one, no problem. A physician can also request you skip a dose, or stop, remotely. When you miss a dose, it remains in the RxPense rather than being forced out of the machine for a potential overdose. Another advantage is that modifying doses or medications is simply a matter of replacing a pill pack with the returned medications remaining sealed in the original packaging.
Another thing that makes RxPense stand out amongst its competitors is just how much medication it can hold. Some pill dispensers can only contain the equivalent of a week’s worth of pills for one patient, but RxPense is capable of holding a two-week supply. Many pharmacies prefer to deliver weekly, so having a device with 2 weeks eliminates any potential disruption to the cycle. In all fairness, the new Hero dispenser can indeed hold up to 1 month of up to 10 medications. However, the lack of security features in the Hero for preventing misuse and theft, along with a general reluctance of pharmacists to provide a full month supply of many medications reduces this benefit. On the other hand, for taking vitamins and health supplements, a month’s supply is definitely an advantage.
Let’s explore “Senior Friendliness”. With our aging society, millions of seniors are faced with taking a complex medication regiment, failing cognitive abilities and increasing complex technology. In this vane, only RxPense was designed from the ground up to support seniors. Everything from the UX/UI, the sounds and visual information to the release of medications has been designed exclusively for Seniors. While caregivers and health care professionals have access to more advanced features and reports, the patients themselves just follow simple instructions to take the right meds at the right time.
Arthritis and limited mobility afflict a growing segment of the senior population. Medications dispensed from RxPense are already opened and can be removed with the use of 1 finger. Hero is the only other unit to also offers this simplicity.
Support for visually impaired is built-in to the RxPense. Accessibility, large, adjustable fonts and voice commands and prompts make it easy to take medications and follow instructions.
While all products can generate an alert to notify you when it is time to take your medications, none have the extensive versatility of the RxPense. Again, keeping Seniors in mind, the one thing that Seniors will always respond to is a telephone call. RxPense is the only unit that can actually call the senior and playback a pre-recorded family member’s voice to remind them to take their meds. This is in addition to the standard alerts, music, mobile and tablet push notifications, z-wave home automation and control of lights to notify.
Only the RxPense will alert the primary caregiver and any other designated contacts when a medication dose is missed for any reason. Others will only alert 1 contact or reach out to a call center. The RxPense notifies by email, SMS and push notifications and records a complete audit trail, with patient data, vitals and images in the cloud.
Language capabilities are critical these days and RxPense is also the only truly multilingual device. But not just at the patient level, throughout the Web portal and mobile app, language selection is built in. While English, French and Spanish are available immediately, there are downloadable language packs planned for the near future.
Going on vacation? Not a problem. RxPense releases and prepares your vacation doses in advance and can remind and track consumption whenever you get connected again. While some may take the whole device with them for extended absences, the folks at RxPense have also planned for shorter vacation period.
Medical information is critical in times of emergency. Several systems support the collection of this data, but none are as extensive as RxPense. Furthermore, the patient may authorize 1 button access to this information on the RxPense which may then be emailed to first responders or emergency hospital staff.
Security in our society is becoming a growing issue. When it comes to medications, health and death implications can result from taking the wrong medications, someone else’s medications or inadvertently dropping pills on the floor for children or pets to find. According to the National Poison Database System (US), a child is the victim of a medication error every 8 minutes. The RxPense is the only device with a physical and digital lock down mechanism that prevents unauthorized tampering. In addition, when it is time to take medications, the patient must identify themselves in front of the RxPense with the proper security credentials, PIN or RFID, at which point an image is captured and stored in the audit trail.
Institutional deployment is usually a complex endeavor. RxPense Cloud was designed to support the deployment of an unlimited number of units, through multiple channels and organizations and to track, monitor and authenticate each one, instantly. Multiple security levels, permissions, opt-ins, dashboards, reports and usage patterns are all innate. RxPense, from a connectivity point of view, is the only 3G/LTE, WiFi and Ethernet enabled device. If you are worried about wireless security, just plug into the Ethernet port.
There are many other advantages that RxPense has over similar devices, but I believe you now have the essence of it. The great thing about identifying a problem is that sometimes bright people get together to provide a solution. When it comes to medication adherence, there are multitude of solutions each with great benefits for a particular demographic. For Seniors, the clear choice is RxPense.