A useful medication-management app


Almost two-thirds of adults in the US own a smart phone and/or tablet. These high-tech devices have led to an abundance of apps that hold promise to engage people in managing their health care.

With support from the Commonwealth Fund, researchers have developed a framework for evaluating mobile health apps to determine how effective and safe they are. Specifically, the research team looked at how the app engaged patients in their care, from providing educational information to providing support through social networks. Unfortunately, fewer than half of the 1,046 apps reviewed appeared to be useful.mango5

One of the apps the researchers found useful is Mango Health (www.mangohealth.com/), a medication management app that offers reminders, refill alerts, drug interaction warnings, and the ability to track medication side effects. Taking medicines exactly as prescribed can be difficult for people with chronic illnesses who often take many medicines. These medicines are likely taken on different schedules and might need to be changed periodically. If you are not a “techy” and want low interaction with the app, you can simply record a medication list and receive reminders to take each drug on time. If you want more information, you can view summaries of your medication history and missed doses, and receive guidance on how to identify and manage drug interactions. Highly engaged patients can track their medicines through a points system that enters users into a weekly raffle for prizes. However, users cannot share information with healthcare providers or connect users with peer groups. Both those who work in healthcare and those who do not, found the app useful and highly recommended it. 

Created on April 11, 2016

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