Assistive Technology for Seniors & Caregivers
Our rapidly aging society is forcing us to adapt to a new reality that seniors, while consuming the largest portion of healthcare dollars, also represents the fastest growing demographic of the 21st century.
A chronic illness is defined as the presence of an organic, psychological or cognitive cause with a minimum duration of three months, leading to either functional limitation and participation in social life, dependence on one or more drugs, increased need for medical and home care.
People are living longer than ever. The increase in life expectancy contributes to the increase of certain chronic diseases and the use complex medication regimens, polypharmacy and thus increasing the iatrogenic risk. Medication non-adherence is a major concern.
The management of chronic diseases is much more difficult for patients to take care of, increasing the need for caregivers.
The demand for caregivers, worldwide, is growing exponentially. The trend is universal. The majority of caregivers are currently family members who give up work, school and pay to care for a loved one.
Consequences of Medication Non-adherence
So what are the consequences of medication non-adherence? In pharmacology, there is a concept called ” therapeutic window ”. This is based on an effective concentration of any active ingredient to achieve the desired effect. These concentrations are affected by several factors including the catch interval. If the latter is not respected, then we talk about non-compliance with treatment or medication non-adherence. The drugs lose their effectivity. Patients do not improve. Caregivers face increased burdens.
According to a report published by the WHO in 2003 states that solving the problem of non-adherence would be more effective than the advent of any new biomedical progress.
Our Aging Society
In Canada, 10,000 people reach the age of 65 every day. 20% of seniors aged 65 and over have cognitive impairment. 27% of seniors leaving the hospital are classified as not adhering to treatment. Long-term care facilities do not have enough beds. The Canadian government estimates that this number will double by 2035, resulting in estimated costs of $ 194 million. Non-adherence to treatment is responsible for 30% of readmissions to the hospital, which costs about $ 300 million to the healthcare system.
Caregivers are Needed
Caregivers are literally, care-givers. Children taking care of their parents, parents taking care of grandparents, family members and relatives make up the largest pool of caregivers, mostly unpaid. Caregiver stress and burnout are well documented, as are the financial strains placed on families, and governments.
Over 50% of carers globally say their health has suffered as a result of their caring responsibilities even whilst expressing positive sentiments about their role*.
Most caregivers are taught by example, watching previous generations care for their loved ones. Perhaps more formalized training would be a great thing. Beginning in High School, students can be taught about the essentials of caring for as senior or loved one with chronic disease. Certainly we would graduate more loving and caring adults perhaps even creating a new career path. But today, how do we cope with our short term needs?
One of the solutions proposed by several groups is to introduce technology into the daily lives of our seniors but also for their caregivers, health professionals and the entire circle of care. This technology can help attendants to monitor their patients, reduce labor costs, reduce the adverse effects of non-adherence to treatment and, therefore, blur the socio-economic impact of non-adherence treatment on the healthcare system.
Let’s explore a recent innovation to assist patients and caregivers in not only maintaining adherence, but also in realizing a better quality of life, reduced stress and lower healthcare costs.
The RxPense Helps Patients and Caregivers
While the RxPense was invented by Medipense to be the best pill dispenser for seniors, it now shows potential to become the best pill dispenser for caregivers! More features and technology to benefit patients, their caregivers, circle of care and even administrators, the RxPense provides the consistency, reliability and persistence needed to know that a patient is well cared for. Remote monitoring, telemedicine, voice biometrics and security, automated programming and loading, it notifies and follows up with patients when time to take their medications, confirms consumption and notifies caregivers when anomalies occur. It offers proof of dispensing via data and images stored securely in an audit trail, accessible via the Cloud, anywhere.
A caregiver or physician can follow-up with the patient by logging into their secure, cloud-based web portal, reading the data, making decisions, activating video or voice contact and making it easy for a senior to remain at home.
Though increased use of the RxPense and other technologies, caregivers can monitor their patients at a distance, and find increased comfort in knowing that they can be notified and more easily communicate with their loved ones. Seniors can find comfort in knowing that caregivers are simply a button, or voice call away.
Buy The Best Automated Pill Dispenser for Seniors
Why the RxPense is better:
- Keep your existing pharmacy & pharmacist: every pharmacy already does, or can easily fill blister packages with all your medications. Pharmacists can do this manually or with a special robot. As a senior, you benefit from consistency of dealing with a pharmacist who knows you, a pharmacy and pharmacist with whom you have already built a relationship. Other devices require specialty pharmacies to supply your meds, which may only seal up to 4 or 5 meds per package. RxPense on the other hand uses blister packaging, sealed by the pharmacist which may hold up to 15 meds per dose.
- Monitor and Improve Adherence, facilitates medication reconciliation: the RxPense improves adherence by reminding you to take your meds and notifies your caregiver or circle of care team when you do not. All medications, schedule, doses and details are available at the touch of a button, to allow your pharmacist to perform a MedsCheck or medication reconciliation.
- Emergency Help, when needed: Tapping support or emergency information on the RxPense displays a complete picture of your health, medications, history and contact details of your caregivers. Use of Panique, our panic button and fall detector accessory further ensures those who need to know, are notified.
- Prevent theft, under-consumption or over-dosing: the RxPense is locked and requires authentication to open, consume meds or operate. Medication dose times are respected and additional doses or incorrect dose times are prevented. Meds that have already been skipped or missed, remain inside, locked and will not be dispensed.
- Circle of Care: maintains close connections with family, friends, physicians, pharmacists, clinicians and caregivers. The important people in your life are always connected. They receive alerts when you don’t take your pills, panic or fall. They can log into the portal to review your adherence and view any vitals collected from third-party wearables or devices.
Medipense has spent years researching medication errors, dispensing problems, senior and caregiver concerns. When it comes to exploring options to buy an automated pill dispenser, the result is only one, a world-class assistive device, the RxPense.
Need other reasons to enjoy the RxPense?
- Blister Package Automation: automatically opens blister packaged medications though a patented process. Eliminates manual opening.
- Security, physical & virtual: medications can not be removed or viewed once locked into the RxPense®, until it is time to take them. Biometric/RFID/PIN identification and authorization levels determine who can access and consume. Image of consumer can be captured.
- Validation: When inserted into the RxPense®, Patient Data is automatically captured from header/barcode on sealed blister-packaged medications prepared by the pharmacy. Medications, Patient, Machine and Pharmacy must match the patient profile or EHR.
- Medications: Dispense up to 2 weeks’ complex medication regimens (15 pills per dose). Additional reminders for PRN, OTC and liquids. Control of opioids and high value meds.
- Alerts: Audible alarms and voice recordings as reminders, image and video capture during use.
- Multilingual: English, French and Spanish out of the box. Other languages downloadable.
- Cloud-based Portal: Extensive organizational, sub-org, divisional and location-based management of entire population of devices, caregivers and patients, updates, permissions and privacy. At-a-glance population views and monitoring. Perfect for seniors, caregivers, clinicians, administrators, institutions, organizations and governments.
- Surveys: Completely integrated custom survey creation and delivery to patients, before during or after medication consumption.
- Delivery: Medications physically/robotically removed from the blister package and provided to the patient, with instructions for consumption. Perfect for Elderly and arthritic conditions.
- Missed Dose Skip: When a dose is missed, caregivers are notified. Patented robotics ensure the patient is prevented from double-dosing next time.
- Panic/Fall Detection: Panique™ personal pendant that serves as a fall-detector, panic button and authentication device.
- Support: 1 button emergency or caregiver contact assistance.
- Reports: manage/consolidate groups of patients, vitals and medication compliance reports.
- Other: large touch screen, battery backup, emergency information, full audit trail, compliance history.
For more details on how to buy automated pill dispenser, or a live demo of the RxPense, contact us today.
Solutions for Caregivers
Nearly 30% of our population of 15 and over acting as caregivers to the fastest growing segment of our society, seniors. There are not enough caregivers to meet the growing demand. Caregivers need to do more, with less. Caregivers need to care for themselves too. To meet the care needs of our aging population, it is projected that the governments of Canada and the provinces will need an additional $93 Billion over the next decade and this does not include the additional support needed to help caregivers themselves.
Complete Patient & Device Remote Monitoring and Control
The RxPense® Portal is an integral part of the RxPense® ecosystem. It provides secure, cloud-based access to patient profiles and the administration of RxPense® Hubs, regardless of location. The cloud securely hosts our Web Portal and API Component which bridges the RxPense® with Caregivers, Patients, Physicians and Pharmacists.