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Why Does Pharma Want to Put Sensors in This Blockbuster Drug?

Published on: 10.02.2015

Remember when you were little and would do anything to avoid taking your medicine? No matter how much convincing your mom did, you knew it doesn't really taste like cherries. And, you knew that by the time you were able to swallow the pill, chances were that it would leave a bitter, pasty trail on your tongue. It didn't matter if you brushed your teeth 10 times or were rewarded with a cookie, the taste stayed with you. So long that, horror of horrors, it was still with you when it was time for your next dose.

But, medicine has evolved since those days and taste can't be used as an excuse anymore. And soon, they won't be able to use 'I forgot" anymore either. Why? Because a pharma company is trying to secure approval for sensors in a blockbuster drug. 

Yes, you heard right! The makers of Abilify have partnered with a tech health company to digitally monitor whether patients take their pill. Wait. Not monitor. Enable and empower - let's use that terminology instead. We don't want people to think this is some sort of 'new world order,' Minority Report effort to control people's lives. 

The technology, which ties a chip in the pill activated by stomach acid to a device worn like a band-aid, alerts your doctor when you forget to take your medicine. Think this might be a turn-off for someone suffering from schizophrenia, which Abilify treats? Perhaps it is for the 10% of sufferers who do not believe they are ill. But, for the other 90% of patients, who want to take their medicines and feel better, this removes a substantial barrier to effective treatment. 

And, it opens up the possibilities for successfully managing other illnesses that can be effectively treated if patients remember to take their pill. We are looking forward to the technology advances that will allow a robot to take our medicines, but we still receive the benefits. Until then, contact us for more information about our pill counting technology.

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