Device Review: The MedCenter Talking One-Month Medication Organizer and Reminder by MedCenter System - Rehabilitation and Prosthetic Services
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Device Review: The MedCenter Talking One-Month Medication Organizer and Reminder by MedCenter System


Device Review: The MedCenter Talking One-Month Medication Organizer and Reminder by MedCenter Systems (2015)

Reviewed on June 1st, 2015

By: Kimberly Powell

Overview

The MedCenter Talking One-Month Medication Organizer and Reminder is a medication organizer and reminder device to aid in medication compliance. This device was designed by two sons to ensure that their father took his medication regularly. This system consists of 31 color coded individual boxes, each with 4 pill labeled compartments (morning, noon, evening and night) that sit in a frame and a talking clock with 4 reminder alarm settings. At the beginning of the month, you fill the compartments with the appropriate medications, placing the green color coded end facing up in the vertical slots and set the alarms according to the medication schedule. Each day, the corresponding pill box for that day is removed & placed next to the alarm clock. The alarm clock has up to four alarm settings. When the alarm sounds, it either beeps or speaks, "Please take your pills". After all medications are taken for that day, the pill box is returned to its vertical slot on the stand with the red end up to indicate that all medications are completed for that day. Entire unit measures about 7.5" x 7.25" x 10". Uses 2 "AA" batteries which are included or a DC adapter which is not included.

Indications

The MedCenter Talking One-Month Medication Organizer and Reminder is indicated for those who need more than organization of their medicines. The reminder system, with its visual and auditory components, benefits individuals who need additional cueing for when to take their medications as well as back up verification that the daily doses have been taken. The auditory component, which includes an alarm and verbal instructions, is helpful for those with visual limitations and the two volume adjustment is useful for those who are hard of hearing. The device would be indicated for the general population who is physically able to take their medications but due to mild memory impairments, needs the cueing for medication management; therefore, this device could benefit individuals with mild dementia, stroke, brain injury, diabetes, Parkinson's disease, and Multiple Sclerosis.

Contraindications

User must be able to fill the organizer with the medications as prescribed or have caregiver that can. Not suitable for liquid or suppository medications. This device is not setup for PRN medications. Because this device is only an aid in medication compliance, those individuals requiring more than a visual and verbal reminders would not be appropriate.

 

Criteria for Evaluation of Assistive Technology Device

Affordability: MedCenter Talking One-Month Medication Organizer and Reminder sells for $95.95 in the Patterson Medical Catalog. VA price is less. This device can be ordered through prosthetics for Veterans with medical justification. This item is not covered by Medicare however it is sold on-line for as low as $69. It can be purchased through www.epill.com.

Compatibility: Not applicable

Consumer Repair ability: This device is not serviceable by the consumer however basic troubleshooting suggestions can be located on the company's website.

Dependability: Clock/Alarm system appears very dependable. According to manufacturer's manual, the two AA batteries that come with the system should last for one year before needing replacing. There is a DC port but a charger is not included.

Durability: This system consists of 31 individual pill boxes, a stand and alarm clock. The pill boxes and stand appear to be relatively durable. The alarm clock is susceptible to breakage if dropped. The system is guaranteed for one year from the date of purchase for manufacturer's defects only.

Ease of Assembly: The alarm clock batteries must be activated by pulling the plastic tab. The written instructions are divided into six, easy to follow, sections that describe the buttons on the alarm clock, how to set the current time/date, how to set alarm times, how to use the talking alarm clock, how to use the pill boxes with the stand and using the complete MedCenter system. Setting the time, date and alarms is straightforward and there is voice guidance as well as written instructions. It arrives with four preset alarm settings (morning: 7a.m., afternoon: 1p.m., evening: 6p.m., night: 10:30p.m.).

Ease of Maintenance: The individual pill boxes & stand can be wiped with a damp cloth. Making sure that the pill boxes are thoroughly dry before loading is important. They should not be placed in dish washer. The alarm clock should not come in contact with water.

Effectiveness: The Talking Alarm or beeping alerts users when it's time to take their medications. An alarm sounds every 4 minutes until the "alarm acknowledged" button is pressed. Loud & extra loud sound settings ensure the alarm can be heard, even in other rooms of the home. It also has an "alarm check" button which tells the user when the next time to take their medications will be. The 31 pill boxes are color coded at each end. When the red end is up, it signals that the medications have all been taken for the day. Green end up means meds have not been taken that day. Because the device is filled monthly, it is also effective for indicating the need for prescription refills.

Flexibility: The 4 daily pill compartments make it flexible for those with medications that are taken more than once a day. It is not designed for those who may need to take medications more than 4x per day. The compartments are considered small by some & make not fit more than two larger size tablets. The ability to set one, two, three or all four alarms also makes this device flexible for a wide range of users.

Learnability: Once set up, the device is easy to learn to operate. The simplicity of only having 4 buttons on the clock helps with quick learning.

Operability: Large-type display makes viewing the date, day and time easy. It is also has a backlit display for convenient night time viewing. With only four buttons, on the top of the clock, that are large, labeled & color coded, it makes it easy to learn to operate. The pill compartments are considered difficult to open & would not be recommended for someone with hand weakness or other hand limitations.

Personal Acceptability: Because of the device's size, some might not find it aesthetically attractive on their table top or counter. Overall, consumer reviews indicate that the usefulness of the device outweighs the size.

Physical Comfort: Not applicable.

Portability: The removable daily pill boxes can be easily packed for travel.

Securability: The device has no security features. There are no locking mechanisms thus someone has access to all the medications. It should be kept out of reach of children and individuals who need supervision when taking medications. The device is only intended for use with individuals who only need a visual or auditory reminder.

Supplier Repairability: The supplier does not provide repairs for damaged, tampered with, dropped or otherwise abused products.


1

2

3

4

5

Not satisfied at all

Not very satisfied

More or less satisfied

Quite Satisfied

Very Satisfied

         
 

Category

Score

 

Affordability

 

5

 

Compatibility

 

N/A

 

Consumer Repairability

5

 

Dependability

 

5

 

Durability

 

5

 

Ease of Assembly

5

 

Ease of Maintenance

4

 

Effectiveness

 

5

 

Flexibility

 

5

 

Learnability

 

5

 

Operability

 

5

 

Personal acceptability

5

 

Physical Comfort

N/A

 

Portability

 

4

 

Securability

 

3

 

Supplier Repairability

3

 

  

   
 

Average

 

4.6