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Medication Dispensers for Seniors

by Kimberly O'Loughlin, Aging Technology Expert
May 13, 2016

Question: How can medication dispensers make my ailing father’s life better?

Answer: Medication mismanagement is significant for seniors who are often on several different medications to help treat chronic medical conditions. It is hard to keep track of the various medications they need to take and when to take them. In fact, one in ten senior hospitalizations is related to medication mismanagement.  It is important to keep track of all of the medications a senior is taking, as even one medication mix up can have serious health implications.

There are a number of different options that range from plastic pill box organizers to smart phone applications that will send a reminder when it is time to take the medicine. If you are looking for something even more advanced, there are automatic dispensing services that can dispense pre-sorted medication at various programed times. These types of devices work well when a caregiver is able to preload the medication and enables the senior to live independently and manage his or her medicine on a daily basis without support from others.  They provide a reminder to the senior to dispense the medicine at pre-scheduled times throughout the day.  What this can do is give back some dignity as seniors can manage their medication.  It also can relieve pressure on caregivers as they no longer have to manage the medication on a daily basis. It can also improve outcomes (better health, less pain) and support higher adherence to the clinician’s orders.

Kimberly O’Loughlin is Senior Vice President and General Manager of Philips Home Monitoring. She leads the global business serving seniors and their caregivers with safety, health and connected solutions including Philips Lifeline emergency response services, medication management solutions and a cognitive health service. Kimberly has over 25 years of leadership experience at companies that include Vonage, AIG and AT&T.

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