Forgetting to take your medicine? Prepare to be nagged by it

2 March 2010

glowcapMedicine. No-one likes taking it. Even if it comes with a spoonful of sugar, people just can't be arsed.

Most of the time it isn't a problem because you've got a jar full of placebos anyway because your GP either thinks you're a hypochondriac or he actively wants you to die because you're annoying.

However, if you've got high-blood pressure or diabetes (and want to live), then it's pretty important that you take your pills because you'll either explode or lose a limb or something.

People with chronic conditions are seemingly the worst offenders when it comes to the whole Not Being Arsed To Take The Medicine.

So what's the solution?

Well, some company called Express Scripts Inc., is testing an electronic pill container in the US that issues a series of increasingly insistent reminders. What this means is that you're getting a bottle of tablets that will nag you daft. Actually, it is not the container itself, but rather, the bottle top which is called a 'GlowCap'. Initially, when I read the name, I thought it was a glow-in-the-dark contraceptive.

Anyway, the GlowCap is equipped with a wireless transmitter that plugs into the wall and when it's time for you to munch some chemicals, it emits a pulsing orange light. If you ignore that, after an hour, the gadget starts beeping every five minutes... and the noise gets more complicated and insistent the longer you leave it (aka Annoying).

Then, if you're able to ignore that, the device can set off an automated telephone or text message reminder to patients. It also can generate email or letters reporting to a family member or doctor how often the medication is taken.

Fucking mental.

That's got nothing on something Novartis AG has licensed. They are looking into a tiny, edible chip, from Proteus Biomedical Inc. Basically, the chip is attached to a pill and when it hits your failing insides, it sends a signal to the patient and designated individuals.

Of course, if you've neglected your diabetes, you may well have gone blind and your ears may have fallen off, which means that none of these things would work... but to be honest, anyone like that is more effort than they're worth aren't they? Or am I just a heartless bastard? Or do I not really mean it?


TOPICS:   Technology   Not The Onion   Health


  • Mike R.
    A good idea, but would be even better if the container could be used by people with poor motor skills, a side-effect of many memory taxing illnesses.
  • anonymouse
    Potentially of use for people living with mental health conditions, where consistent taking of mood stabilisers, anti-psychotics is important for managing the condition.
  • init
    I somehow always remember to take my drugs Perhaps a warning to say I was getting low on supplies would help though
  • Tariq
    Already exists
  • TheillegitimatesonofGunn
    Making fun of diabetes sufferers in order to earn a cheap laugh? I hope God sees fit to curse you with it, then we'll see how funny it is. Well done on dragging this site down to all new levels though Moff.

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