BlackBerry QNX: In Health Care, We Can Do What iOS, Android Can't

By Michelle Maisto  |  Posted 2013-05-16 Print this article Print

DayaMed, a developer, manufacturer and distributor of pharmaceuticals and consumer medical devices, is one company that has gotten behind QNX and the BlackBerry platform.
CEO and founder Justin Daya offered an overview of the MedPod, a medicine-dispensing system his company offers that has a "highly secure, controllable and configurable back end and a consumer-facing front end."

According to Daya, only 25 to 30 percent of prescriptions are taken properly, whether because patients forget to take pills or become confused about what to take or whether they already took it.

The MedPod is a device, about the size of a landline phone, that is filled by a pharmacist, sounds a chime when it's time for a patient to take his medication, dispenses the medication—sealed inside a strip that looks like a receipt—tells the patient any relevant information (such as "take this on an empty stomach" or "don't drive after taking this") and can instantly connect a patient to his pharmacist, should he have questions, or to a caregiver.

The MedPod can be programmed to alert a family member or other contact if the patient doesn't take his pills, and it keeps a real-time record of patient information, including the time that mediation was dispensed, what was dispensed, and if any calls or alerts were placed. All of that information can be accessed on the device's display.

If the patient is traveling internationally, a call placed through the MedPod would go to a DayaMed call center and be rerouted locally—though such fees don't affect the patient. The cost of the MedPod is a flat $85 per month.

The MedPod's software is updated remotely—it runs on the Sprint network—with zero downtime for the patient. Should a patient no longer need it, the MedPod is sent back, refurbished and reused. The pharmacist fills it, and it's quickly shipped to the patient (DayaMed also has a relationship with FedEx).

"It has not been an easy road to settle on BlackBerry and QNX," Daya admitted. "But in the end, having a real-time OS made our decision very simple."

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