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Tuberculosis patient develops locker to deliver meds so patients can avoid long waiting times

Shared by Ana Duarte on 2019-05-21 19:27

About the solution

“I was collecting medication from my public clinic in Bophelong township in Vanderbijlpark, an industrial manufacturing small town. The initial treatment phase of my disease was six months. During my treatment, my biggest challenge was the long waiting times at the clinic, I was losing over three hours on long queues with every visit. Most of the other patients that waited along with me had to miss work just to collect their medicine”, the inventor, who founded his company around this solution, explained.

Because he wanted to minimise the time he spent waiting to collect his meds (a patient's experience tends to be above three hours), he came up with a solution (he spent six months regularly driving back and forth to his local clinic for treatment and medicine). With Pelebox, the patient only needs two minutes to get the medication.

The device consists of a smart locker solution which features an SMS notification system for chronic medication collection tracking. Here’s how it works: the patient enrols into the local clinic's collection programme and they are issued with a six month prescription for chronic medication. Then a clinic staff member places the pre-packed medication in cubicles and the patients are notified via SMS that their prescriptions are ready for collection. Each patient is validated by entering a one-time PIN and their cellphone number, which electronically unlocks their compartment when the access is validated. Then the compartment containing the meds open, and the patient can collect it and leave. The base unit can facilitate 72 transactions per day before reloading (which is just under 1600 transactions per month using one small smart locker unit for a small clinic).

“It’s really challenging having to plan your day around a visit to the clinic. We are very familiar with how demotivating it is to wait for hours on hours just to comply with treatment cycles when you could be at work. We then started being curious about what can be done and how we can play an active role in solving this challenge. Our journey started with visiting clinics and really paying attention to why this problem still persists”, it says on the official website.

Pelebox also helps to empower patients to stay on their treatment cycle by eliminating the fear of wasting time on visits to collect the medication.

This innovation can be placed at non-medical and it’s aligned with the South Africa Department of Health program which aims to reduce congestion.

Adapted from: https://bit.ly/2HEmdzy

More info: https://www.pelebox.com

This solution shall not include mention to the use of drugs, chemicals or biologicals (including food); invasive devices; offensive, commercial or inherently dangerous content. This solution was not medically validated. Proceed with caution! If you have any doubts, please consult with a health professional.

About the author

Neo Hutiri, from South Africa, is an electrical engineer who was diagnosed with tuberculosis in 2014. He created Pelebox, an automated locker system that allows people with chronic conditions to collect their repeat chronic medication in under two minutes as opposed to three hours.

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