Apps to Increase Medical Adherence
By Brook Jillings, contributor
When patients come to medical professionals for their conditions, the treatments they're offered are only effective if they're able to carry out medical instructions correctly. Many nursing interventions for medication compliance are available, but a medical adherence app is a great way to provide patients with the tools they need to take responsibility for their own care.
Find out how apps for medical adherence can improve your patient outcomes and what apps are available to recommend.
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Why you should recommend a medical adherence app to patients
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that only two out of five patients fill their prescriptions and take them as directed. With an annual cost of $100 to $300 billion, medication compliance has an enormous impact on patient outcomes and the financial health of the medical industry. Medical adherence apps offer patients a convenient tool to improve their compliance with medication and the efficacy of prescribed treatment plans.
Patients can download medical adherence apps to their smartphones to set reminders for dosage times, give refill alerts, log doses taken and track medication information such as side effects, provider notes, dosage ranges and potential interactions. Some of the more sophisticated apps can combine this information so patients can access everything they need related to their medications. There's a higher chance of compliance with medication when a medical adherence app makes treatment more convenient.
4 Medical Adherence App Options
There are many medical adherence apps on the market to choose from, but here are four free apps that have proven themselves as valuable tools to encourage medication compliance.
1. MedManage: "MedManage is a medication list and calendar that reminds you to take your medication and tracks your adherence progress..." says Simon Greenberg, a MedManage programmer. "It includes a breakdown of your medication names and directions, a handy reference calendar, dose reminders sent straight to your phone, and an electronic medication daily log." Available for iOS and Android.
2. Pill Reminder: This app was released by Drugs.com. Along with prescription medication, Pill Reminder allows users to manage vitamins, supplements and birth control. It can keep track of medication stock, offers information about tracked medications and reminds users when prescriptions need filling. Available on iTunes.
3. MyMedSchedule: This is another scheduling app that can send reminders and includes information on tracked medications, such as pictures, purpose and allergy information. It syncs with the MyMedSchedule website for easy sharing with medical providers. Available for iOS and Android.
4. Medisafe: Medisafe is a reminder app that alerts users when it's time to take medications through push notifications. It will also alert friends and family if a dosage is missed, making it ideal for family members who need extra assistance. Available for Android and iOS.