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Tech Tools Tackle Medication Problems

Scott Mace, for HealthLeaders Media, July 16, 2013

One early MedSnap adopter is no stranger to me: Cullman Regional Medical Center. "The culture of our hospital is to utilize the latest technology to help us with better patient outcomes," says Cullman president Jim Weidner. Cullman was familiar with MedMined, a previous company Hymel ran, so was receptive to the new idea.


MedSnap

From its first use of the product, Cullman had convincing evidence that MedSnap could be useful, as it was able to distinguish an antipsychotic medication from a similar-looking common antibiotic, Weidner says.

Since then, Cullman has deployed MedSnap with its home health nurses as well as when patients present at the emergency department with bags full of their medications, Weidner says.

"It's improved accuracy, it's improved efficiency, it has improved quality in the way of identification of contraindications, and, what we hope to have it morph into is to actually have our patients have the application on their iPhones so that on a daily basis the patient can do their own MedSnap," Weidner says. The app would then be able to notify physicians or the hospital that the patient is not following what has been prescribed.

Hymel, whose own father struggled with a challenging regimen of medications while being treated for cancer, sees the power of technology to change a culture where patients were expected to recite what medications they are on, to one of where the patient simply brings in what they are taking and presents that history visually – a visual intervention, if you will.

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