UM School of Pharmacy collaborates w/ tech startup emocha to offer clinical adherence solution

BALTIMORE, MD. — The Center for Innovative Pharmacy Solutions at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy is collaborating with emocha Mobile Health to expand the company’s clinician-led adherence solution offering. Through this collaboration, pharmacists in the School’s eHealth Center will provide patients with comprehensive medication review and reconciliation services through a mobile application that protects their privacy. emocha will offer this service to hospitals, health systems, and health insurers, with the goal to increase medication adherence, address medication related problems, and manage the rising cost of care and readmission rates.

“We are excited to collaborate with this outstanding institution that has a strong track record of developing technology-enabled services to maximize patient engagement and improve adherence,” says Sebastian Seiguer, CEO at emocha. “By leveraging the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy’s eHealth Center and expertise, we are able to provide the highest quality medication review to patients and have expanded our ability to rapidly address medication related problems.”

UM School of Pharmacy

It has been estimated that medication nonadherence costs U.S. health systems and payers between $100 and $289 billion annually in preventable hospitalizations, while resulting in poor health outcomes. Adverse drug events in the United States cause more than one million visits to emergency departments and approximately 350,000 hospitalizations annually. Through emocha, patients improve medication adherence with video Directly Observed Therapy (DOT) and a clinician-led support team. DOT is the gold standard for medication adherence, and emocha is the market leader in video DOT, with more than 70 customers and multiple independent studies validating greater than 90 percent adherence rates for patients using emocha’s platform.

Patients enrolled in emocha’s video DOT programs use a Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliant mobile app to video-record themselves taking their medications while working with emocha nurses and health care workers to support them through treatment. Patients can report side effects, access local resources, receive medication reminders, and track their treatment progress. This collaboration with the School of Pharmacy expands emocha’s solution to add optimization of medication regimens offered by the medication experts — pharmacists in the School’s eHealth Center.

In addition to behavioral factors, a significant barrier to adherence includes medication problems ranging from improper drug administration to incorrect dosage. The collaboration between emocha and School of Pharmacy’s Center for Innovative Pharmacy Solutions will facilitate the management of medication related problems that impact adherence. “Incorporating pharmacists who work in the School’s eHealth Center into the emocha program to confirm that patients follow correct technique, and to provide timely interventions to solve drug related problems such as side effects and maximize therapeutic outcome, makes emocha the most comprehensive solution to medication nonadherence in the world,” says Seiguer.

The collaboration between a technology start-up company in Baltimore City and CIPS not only meets a market need, but also enables better delivery of medication therapy management services and provides an overall strengthening of care.

“At the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy, we focus on providing highly supportive services to patients through comprehensive medication review and reconciliation to prevent and reduce drug-related problems,” says Magaly Rodriguez de Bittner, PharmD, director of the Center for Innovative Pharmacy Solutions and associate dean of clinical services and practice transformation at the School. “emocha is leading the way on the development of health-related technologies, and we are pleased to collaborate with them to provide medication therapy management services to a wide array of patients using this technology. Our extensive clinical experience in improving patient outcomes is a great addition to emocha’s innovative patient care platform.”

“The Center for Innovative Pharmacy Solutions’ collaboration with emocha truly demonstrates the School’s Pharmapreneurship™ initiative in action and is characterized by leadership, expertise, and new venture design,” says Natalie D. Eddington, PhD, FAAPS, FCP, dean and professor of the School.

About emocha Mobile Health

emocha empowers patients to take every dose of medication through video technology and scalable human engagement. Patients use a smartphone application to video record themselves taking medication, while providers or emocha’s clinician-led Adherence Solution team use a secure web portal to assess compliance and engage with patients. The platform is being used by public health departments, hospitals, health centers, and managed care organizations across the globe to radically improve medication adherence for patients with diabetes, tuberculosis, opioid use disorder, asthma, COPD, hepatitis C, and other chronic and infectious diseases.

About the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy

Established in 1841, the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy is ranked as one of the top ten schools of pharmacy in the United States. The School is a thriving center for professional and graduate education, pharmaceutical care, research, and community service. Its faculty create the future of pharmacy by pioneering new roles for pharmacists in advanced clinical practice and conducting cutting-edge research in drug discovery and development, comparative effectiveness and patient-centered outcomes, and disease management. A contemporary curriculum, innovative educational experiences, and strategic professional relationships help to inspire excellence in the School’s more than 1,000 students, residents, and postdoctoral fellows. Together, we are critical thinkers, lifelong learners, and leaders who are sought for our expertise.

About the Center for Innovative Pharmacy Solutions

The Center for Innovative Pharmacy Solutions (CIPS) at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy is the leader in delivering health care and business solutions that address critical health problems and challenges. The solutions that we deliver work to optimize patients’ medication management through our P3clinical initiatives and programs, cutting-edge technology, program management and professional support services, training and education programs, and research. The programs and activities developed by CIPS deliver products and services that address medication-related gaps in health care and promote improved medication effectiveness at the patient, provider, and health system levels.

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