Vaica: Digital Health Company Gets Up and Running with AI in a Day

Machine learning for medication adherence.

Category: Healthcare, medication adherence, chronic illness, pharmaceuticals, health insurance.

Company

Vaica is a technology company whose solutions increase medication adherence among people living with chronic illnesses. In the United States alone, patients not taking prescribed medications costs $300 billion a year and ends in worse health outcomes. [1–4] Since 2007, Vaica has used smart medication dispensers and cloud-based software to help remind people to take their medication.

Challenge

Vaica is known for sustaining high adherence rates among its users (94.5% on average). [5] Nevertheless, its team envisioned ways to further improve upon those numbers and cut costs with artificial intelligence (AI). For example, they wanted their smart medication dispenser to detect optimal times in each user’s day for sending medication reminders (e.g., when the user wakes up in the morning).

Though the output sounds simple, constructing the machine learning logic behind these features costs a lot of time and money. That’s partly why tech giants like Google, Amazon, and Facebook have enjoyed a rich AI harvest, while smaller players have yet to even plant seeds. Vaica wanted to use AI to cement a dominant position in the digital health space.

Solution

Vaica operationalized AI in an instant with the Neura software development kit (SDK) and medication adherence add-on library (add-on). With Neura, Vaica’s development team avoided months (or even years) of having to devise their own machine learning logic.

Since 2012, our team of data scientists at Neura has been perfecting our machine learning algorithms. Neura transforms raw sensor data from a user’s phone and connected devices into precise, real-time insights about their habits and activities.

Neura not only equipped Vaica with these AI-powered insights but, with the Neura add-on, also provided pre-developed logic for the features themselves. Vaica developers used the open code with their product to instantaneously unlock features like the morning medication reminder.

Result

The Neura SDK and add-on saved the Vaica team months of development time. All told, it took them two hours to install Neura’s AI solution and less than a day to get it up and running.

“At Vaica, we’re in the business of improving the quality of life for people living with chronic illnesses,” says Vaica CEO Tomer Gofer. “Solving the massive non-adherence problem is key, and it’s not a simple task. Neura expanded our ability to accomplish this mission by giving us the AI-driven features that we knew would improve the lives of our customers. And the integration was quick and easy.”

The Neura add-on gave Vaica several pre-built features that any medication adherence app and Internet of Things (IoT) device company can take advantage of. Such features include:

  1. Reminders that prompt users to take their medication when they get up in the morning.
  2. Reminders that prompt users to take their medication dispenser with them as they are leaving their home.
  3. Reminders that prompt users to take their medication before they go to bed.
Neura expanded our ability to accomplish this mission [of increasing adherence for people living with chronic illnesses] by giving us the AI-driven features that we knew would improve the lives of our customers. And the integration was quick and easy.”
— Tomer Gofer, CEO of Vaica

Conclusion

Vaica proves that AI is no longer exclusive to tech behemoths. Any player in the digital health space can now personalize their products with Neura and so increase engagement and improve health outcomes.

Vaica had already achieved a great deal before Neura came along. We simply made it easy for them to take their product to the next level with AI.

Neura offers this same power to all mobile app and IoT companies in the digital health community. The Neura AI engine plus the pre-built features make AI more accessible than ever.


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Citations

[1] “Avoidable Costs in U.S. Healthcare.” IMS Health. 2016. Accessed December 29, 2016. http://www.imshealth.com/en/thought-leadership/quintilesims-institute/reports/avoidable-costs.

[2] Benjamin, Regina M. “Medication Adherence: Helping Patients Take Their Medicines as Directed.” Public Health Reports (2012):127(1): 2–3.

[3] Osterberg, Lars, and Terrence Blaschke. “Adherence to Medication.” New England Journal of Medicine 353, no. 5 (2005): 487–97. doi:10.1056/nejmra050100.

[4] “Adherence Facts.” CVS Health. 2015. Accessed December 16, 2016. https://cvshealth.com/sites/default/files/Adherence%20Facts.pdf.

[5] “Vaica Medical and mServices Present Successful Medication Adherence Study Results at Santa Helena, Brazil.” PRNewswire. December 1, 2016. Accessed February 10, 2017. http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/vaica-medical-and-mservices-present-successful-medication-adherence-study-results-at-santa-helena-brazil-300371238.html.