NEW MODELS OF MedSignals® TO BE RELEASED THIS QUARTER
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New shapes and functions are being added to the MedSignals device, providing many low-cost options to users. The option of deeper bins and more communications methods adds many new combinations to the portfolio.
The WEDGE model gives buyers an optional bottom housing that will double the number of pills and remove any limitation on size of pills that compartments can hold. The Wedge adds only $10 cost and can be used only with cellular devices.
CELLULAR uploads are now available with embedded chips using low-cost data transfer via M2M networks. Thus, MedSignals is no longer tethered with landline cords or a cradle. A micro USB cable charges the unit, expected to be about equal to cell phone recharging requirements. The same subscription fee will apply to cellular uploads from the home and full distribution of alerts and reports to recipients via email, text message, fax, automated phone calls, and EMR uploads. While this model is undergoing FDA approval, it is only available to researchers or in beta tests and demonstrations.
CELL PHONE UPLOAD capability is on the horizon next in which Bluetooth devices can be paired with the user’s cellphone to upload data without its own telephony.
BLUETOOTH MULTI-PACKs will soon allow a 2nd or 3rd MedSignals to be paired and transmit usage data to the ‘master’ MedSignals gateway in the home that has cellular or landline uploading capability. The gateway MedSignals also serves as a hub for Bluetooth-transmitting vital sign monitors.
‘NEXT GEN’ electronics will replace much of the “original” electronics in all future devices, greatly expanding memory, functionality, bin space, and verbal instruction capability -- adding to the target-rich characteristics of the Original model. In landline models, the same portable 4-bin shape (that fits in pockets and purses easily) will connect to cradles to establish phone and power connections.
INCREASING VOLUME OF BINS: The portable MedSignals model house a month’s supply (or more) of each of 4 prescriptions to be poured into their respective compartments. Each drug has its own separate controls – times of doses, instructions announced, and quantities to take. Compartments extend the full depth of the device (under the electronic controls) in a way that houses more pills than expected. Up to 40 aspirin of a 325 mg. size can fit into each compartment in the Next Gen model, and in the Wedge version, bins hold about 60 aspirins.
CALL CENTER SOON TO HELP WITH SETUP: We know that frail users –often with low tech literacy—should not be solely responsible for setting the controls on MedSignals devices. Our experience is that generally a family member who sees the problems a loved one confronts is the purchaser of the device and ultimately the person wanting to monitor remotely. This primary caregiver usually aids the patient in filling the bins with medications and setting dosing times and instructions easily. However, our 24x7 Call Center will soon be a primary source of support. When setting the device is beyond the skills of the caregiver, our Call Center will be on board by phone, training the caregiver in affix drug The Next Gen Cellular Bluetooth model The portable MedSignals® landline model name labels on compartments, set up regimens in compartments, and assure the right drug goes into the right bin thereafter. Programming instructions are announced verbally when setting devices, so following the steps in the menu allows for setting the device easily. A 24-page, 4-color instruction book is provided, also.
Once the setup device has been turned over to the user, we have simplified the user’s responsibilities to only
4 simple tasks:
- Keep the device plugged to a power source. For cellular models not on a cradle, that means inserting the micro USB cable periodically and assuring it is recharged. For the landline model, restore the device in the cradle daily to keep it charged and permit uploading.
- To upload, cellular MedSignals must be able to receive signals (with even fewer accessibility issues than cell phones, since it can use any phone network). Landline devices must be restored to their cradles that are plugged into RJ-11 jacks to upload data to host servers.
- Reload pills into compartments when running low, pouring from the bottle bearing a color-coded dot that corresponds to the bin number (See red/1 dot that matches red/1 bin button in photo above.)
- When the device is beeping, open the compartment lid that is flashing and listen to instructions as to quantity and warnings, and take accordingly.
THE REMINDING FUNCTION: Individuals respond differently and need multi-sensory alerts – so we offer on-device alerts by text, voiced announcements, beeps, and flashing lights. For benefit of vision impaired or cognitively impaired users, beeps can be replaced with voiced announcements saying “Bin x” instead. MedSignals offers clear instructions aloud for each dose. For orders of 96 or more, new instructions or language can be added to audio options. (Sound volumes can be turned to MUTE or LOW or instructions can be removed if not needed.)
THE MONITORING FUNCTION: Sensors in compartment lids time-stamp openings and store times in memory. Our Bluetooth model can also receive transmissions for vital sign monitors that have no telephonic communication capability themselves.
THE COMMUNICATING FUNCTION: With cellular devices, uploads occur following each event. Landline models can be set to upload once a day or immediately after new events occur by auto-dialing a toll-free number and uploading usage records to their proper user files. Our cellular models rely on uploading via an M2M network that selects the strongest nearby carrier. The Bluetooth MultiPack version uploads via short range communications to a MedSignals Cellular device or a landline MedSignals. Uploading through the user’s cellphone is dependent on application availability.
For more information on models in our pipeline to be introduced in 2012. Call us at 210-222-2067 for more information