Medication adherence is a big problem, particularly when it comes to highly transmissible diseases like tuberculosis or resistant diseases like HIV. One approach that has garnered a lot of attention are ingestible sensors designed to be coingested with a patient’s medications to track adherence. Baltimore startup eMocha Mobile Health is taking a slightly different approach, now being piloted by the Baltimore City Health Department to deliver “directly observed” therapy to TB patients.
The platform works by letting patients take a video of themselves ingesting the medication, makes notes about symptoms or other issues, and send it in to their healthcare provider. Using their own personal mobile device or perhaps a low-cost Android device provided by the health department, compliance with therapy can be actively monitored and documented.
eMocha was originally developed by the Center for Clinical Global Health Education is a versatile platform that enables deployment of a wide range of mHealth interventions on Android devices primarily for educational, research, and public health purposes. For example, community surveys can be rapidly deployed with centralized data collection, resources for community health workers can be centrally managed and remotely accessed, and more. The platform is currently in use for a range of healthcare projects in developing countries, such as with the World Health Organization.
The platform was licensed to eMocha Mobile Health in late 2013; now the team at this startup is working on piloting a number of uses for potential commercialization of the platform as well. Other projects include following patients post-discharge to identify those at risk of bounce back and intervening early.