Patients send a free call each time they take their medication, so that providers can monitor adherence records. The calls are toll-free, so patients do not have any additional costs. Most patients have access to a mobile phone and can make a call, so 99DOTS reaches the maximum number of users.
The analytics produced are extremely powerful, allowing providers to focus their time and attention on those patients who need extra help and counseling taking their medication. Deployments, agencies, and government can also use the data to understand in real-time their patients' adherence.
Once a patient is interacting with 99DOTS, we can bootstrap other services to improve adherence, including daily reminders, incentive structures, or custom-tailored medical advice or counseling if a patient needs.
Our solution is simple, and aims to be low-cost and accessible by all patients. Patient medication is packaged in our custom secondary envelopes which add dosage instruction, and a series of hidden numbers behind the pills.
Each time a patient takes a dose of medication, a hidden number is revealed which is unpredictable to the patient.
The revealed number completes a phone number, where the first part of the number is printed on the front side of the envelope. The patient then makes a free call to the completed phone number.
We maintain a large array of phone numbers which are packaged in an unpredictable way to the patients, and the only way for a patient to call the correct number is to dispense the pills. Therefore, we have high confidence they have taken their medication for the day. With this real-time information, we can package reminders, incentives, and additional counseling for those patients with low adherence
99DOTS is a Microsoft Research project that uses low-cost mobile technologies to monitor and improve adherence at no cost to patients or providers.