A “chip on a pill”, that can track when patients take their medication, has been has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) under the name ‘Abilify MyCite’. The pill which contains an imbedded digital sensor has been developed by Proteus Digital Health for the treatment of schizophrenia, acute treatment of manic and mixed episodes associated with bipolar I disorder and for use as an add-on treatment for depression in adults.
The system works by sending a message from the pill’s sensor to a wearable patch. The patch transmits the information to a mobile application so that patients can track the ingestion of the medication on their smart phone. Patients can also permit their caregivers and physician to access the information through a web-based portal.
The ability to track medicine adherence, particularly in elderly patients and those with mental health issues could provide important information regarding treatment effectiveness. Medicine adherence and compliance is a vital component in the successful treatment of many conditions; it is estimated that up to 50% of prescribed medicines are not taken as directed which results ineffective treatment, medical complications and additional costs to healthcare providers.