Med Assist

Summary
Smartphone applications can be used to improve patients’ medication adherence (1). However, existing applications are only available in English, commercial in nature, and specific to their country of origin. Additionally, some applications are not available in multiple platforms, and may require a subscription to use. Therefore the aim of our study was to develop a smartphone application in English and Malay, and to explore its usability and utility among ambulatory patients in Malaysia.

Med Assist was developed based on literature review and findings from a previous qualitative study (2). The feasibility and usability of Med Assist was then explored qualitatively, using in-depth interviews. Participants were interviewed on the usability of the application after they had entered at least one medication into the application. A date was set approximately 7 days later to interview participants on the utility of Med Assist. Participants were encouraged to concurrently think aloud whilst using the application. The researcher also observed how participants used the application. A descriptive interpretive approach was used to analyse data.

What’s next
Med Assist has now been incorporated into another “health application” which aims to remotely monitor blood glucose and/or blood pressure of ambulatory care patients. Community dwelling patients can remotely monitor their blood glucose and/or blood pressure, and how they take their medications, and send their results to a doctor at the primary care clinic. Qualitative interviews will be conducted to determine the feasibility and utility of this remote monitoring.

Project Team
CHEW Sara
LAI Siew Mei, Pauline
NG Chirk Jenn

Funding
University of Malaya Research Programme (RP015C-13HTM)

Contact Person
LAI Pauline Siew Mei
Department of Primary Care Medicine
Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya
Email: plai@ummc.edu.my