Medication non-adherence costs the industry millions of dollars a year.
But there’s an app for that.
Improvements in adherence and compliance reduce health care cost and instances of hospitalization. The use of smartphone apps makes it easier to manage your medications, keep track of your schedule and find reliable drug information.
Whether it’s an alarm on a phone, or a message in an email, here are a few apps built to help you manage your medication and keep track of health information. They’re no substitute for consulting with your pharmacist or physician, but they’re great for keeping your medication schedule regular.
Here are three apps to help manage your medications and one to keep track of your diet and exercise. All of them are free and available for iPhone and Android.
MyMedSchedule lets you create a list of their medications and supplements, and set reminders to medications and refill prescriptions. The app has preloaded pictures of pills to include in charts, which can be in English or Spanish. You can also set alerts for email or text message reminders. It can be accessed through your phone or on the web.
MedCoach helps you remember when to take medications and vitamins by creating a list of medicines, and setting reminders for when to take them. You can store information about doctors, pharmacies, medical history and appointment times, and find drug information in the Med Lookup. The app also connects patients with their pharmacies to get prescriptions refilled.
MedHelper is another medication adherence app that allows patients to make a schedule of regular and as-needed medications, complete with the reasons for taking the medications, directions and side effects. It has reminders and alerts for medications and tracks the number of pills taken out of each bottle the refills left on the prescription. You can also track information about doctors and appointment times.
Calorie Counter & Diet Tracker by MyFitnessPal.com
For patients wanting to track their weight, food consumption, and exercise, MyFitnessPal, is a great option. The app lets you track the food you eat, either at home or your favorite restaurant and count your calorie, carbohydrate, sodium, sugar, fat and protein consumption. It also tracks calories burned and weight-loss goals. With the MyFitnessPal blog, you can interact with other users who are also monitoring their diet and exercise.
(Written by Tria Health Pharmacy Student Intern Annie Barry, Pharm.D. Candidate at the UMKC School of Pharmacy)