Staying compliant with the medication regimen, which means taking medications exactly as prescribed, is important to health. However, staying adherent to the medication plan can be challenging issue for many patients and their healthcare providers.
It's no wonder then that about 50% of patients in the United States are not taking their medications as prescribed, meaning they either forget to take their medications or take double doses to 'catch up', which both put them at risk.
Patients with heart failure and coronary artery diseases are among those patients who need to strictly follow their treatment plan. One missed dose can put them at great risk. Many of these patients can be on a dozen medications or more, which makes the whole process even more tedious.
The solution to this is having a reminder that would be available at your fingertips, not letting you forget to take your medications ever again.
We have already reviewed several of medication reminder apps, compiling them into the patient's guide to finding good medication reminder apps that help them stay adherent to their treatment. Here, we listed some of the most popular apps that can be used for any medication and any health condition.
The app we review today, named CardioSmart Med Reminder works on a similar premise, but it's focused on patients with coronary artery diseases and heart failure. It is developed by American College of Cardiology, which made some other great cardiology apps we reviewed here on SteadyHealth, including AnticoagEvaluator app, ASCVD Risk Estimator app, BridgeAnticoag app and more.
CardioSmart Med Reminder app enables patients to track their medication use and doses, sends usage and refill reminders, and allows patients to share their data with their doctor.
The app has a simple and straightforward layout. It opens to the Medications screen. To add your medication(s) to track, just tap the plus sign at the top right of the screen.
When adding a medication, you are supposed to provide some details about each, such as name, form, strength, etc. Adding medication name is simple thanks to the autocomplete option that populates the list as you type, which is great because you don't have to worry that you'd misspell the name. Medications can be added by generic or brand name.
Some of the medications in the list already contain strength and form, but you can also add these manually. Here, you can also add notes, for example, if there are specific instructions when taking the medications. Finally, you can select a person that uses the medication. That could be either you or someone else (your family members), which makes CardioSmart Med Reminder app perfect for caregivers.
After you completed adding medication details, you can set reminders. Scroll down and turn the Pill Reminder on to expand the field for adding more details. Here you can add dose, frequency, times, and start and end dates.
You can add refill reminders in a similar fashion. First, enable this option and then add frequency of the alerts (a day, week, or month from now), name and phone of your pharmacy, your insurance details and your Rx number.
Finally, you can add medication picture (optionally). You can either take a photo or chose an image from the phone gallery.
After you're done, hit the Save button and your medication(s) would appear on Medications screen. You can tap on the medication to edit details, indicate that you've taken the medication, or view drug information, including drug interactions, side effects, and dosage. When you indicate you've taken a medication, it will be marked in the list in the Reminders section.
Reminders section contains all reminders for the day that you can edit, or indicate as taken or skipped. This section also features a calendar icon next to the plus icon where you can see reminders by days and pills taken for a particular day. Recording a medication use is quite simple.
Refills section looks similar to Reminders section, allowing users to edit reminders or mark the medications once they're filled.
The last section of the app is More, which basically contains settings where users can set reminders sounds and volumes, pin lock, or the main screen they want to see once they open the app (Medications, reminders or Refills).
There are also options to share the medication list and the history, which contains the information on medications use (taken or skipped). The data can be shared via email. When generating the emails, users can pick a specific user's data to share as well as a time frame.
CardioSmart Med Reminder app is very good solution for promotion and tracking of adherence to the medication regimen, which is intended not only for cardiovascular patients but for patients with other medical conditions as well.
I would recommend this app to all patients, mostly because it's free, easy to use, and it comes from a trusted source.
Benefit: Although there's cardio in its title, this app is suitable for all patients who want to stay adherent to their medication regimen