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A cloud medication safety support system using QR code and Web services for elderly outpatients

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Drug is an important part of disease treatment, but medication errors happen frequently and have significant clinical and financial consequences. The prevalence of prescription medication use among the ambulatory adult population increases with advancing age. Because of the global aging society, outpatients need to improve medication safety more than inpatients.

OBJECTIVE: The elderly with multiple chronic conditions face the complex task of medication management. To reduce the medication errors for the elder outpatients with chronic diseases, a cloud medication safety supporting system is designed, demonstrated and evaluated.

METHODS: The proposed system is composed of a three-tier architecture: the front-end tier, the mobile tier and the cloud tier. The mobile tier will host the personalized medication safety supporting application on Android platforms that provides some primary functions including reminders for medication, assistance with pill-dispensing, recording of medications, position of medications and notices of forgotten medications for elderly outpatients. Finally, the hybrid technology acceptance model is employed to understand the intention and satisfaction level of the potential users to use this mobile medication safety support application system.

RESULTS: The result of the system acceptance testing indicates that this developed system, implementing patient-centered services, is highly accepted by the elderly.

CONCLUSION: This proposed M-health system could assist elderly outpatients' homecare in preventing medication errors and improving their medication safety.