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Portable medication dispenser uses biometrics and cloud technology to prevent prescription drug abuse


Intent Solutions, a health technology and data company, introduced new medical device technology called TAD, “Take As Directed”, at this month’s National Rx Drug Abuse and Heroin Summit.

The mobile medication dispenser incorporates fingerprint recognition, cloud-based data storage and Bluetooth technology. The idea is to deter overdoses, thwart illegal prescription drug sales and help elderly patients remember to take their meds.

According to the company, TAD is built around a portable dispenser containing a disposable vial filled with medication attached to a reusable electronic device. The device is designed to be pre-programmed with the prescribed regimen and patient biometrics. The device notifies the patient that it’s time to take the pill, scans their fingerprint to authenticate the patient, delivers the pill, and records the data. The data is sent to the Smart Device app, and then to a cloud database for analysis.

“Prescription drug abuse is now at a boiling point, having recently replaced auto accidents as the leading cause of injury-related death in the U.S., and a host of policy and education initiatives are being brought to the table to address the problem, including a $1 billion federal investment,” said Sam Zamarripa, President and Director of Intent Solutions, inventors of the TAD device. “But there’s been little talk of how emerging technology can improve the way medications are managed and dispensed while also reducing misuse, abuse and diversion.”

The National Rx Drug Abuse and Heroin Summit features experts from government, business, academia, healthcare, and advocacy and represents the largest collaboration of national thought leaders who are working daily to reduce the prescription drug abuse that feeds directly into heroin use.

The company initially hopes to target treatment centers. With more addicts turning to medication-assisted treatment with drugs such as buprenorphine, TAD would ensure that recovering addicts do not abuse drugs or sell them. TAD also could be used to ensure that recovering addicts and alcoholics who need pain medications after surgery or an accident don’t relapse.

“We know prescription opioids lead to heroin abuse, addiction and death but we must add technological innovation to the conversation,” urges Dr. David Gastfriend, a presenter at the Summit and Scientific Advisor at the Treatment Research Institute (TRI). “We need to be able to monitor and prevent abuse in real time. We need home safety options for those who have been prescribed opioids. And health professionals need feedback on whether the pills they’ve prescribed are being taken in the right amount, at the right time and by the right person.”

In addition to its launch at the Summit, the company is collaborating with Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and will enter TAD into an NIH funded clinical trial in April of this year.

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