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North Dakota Assistive

ND Assistive | Assistive Technology Blog

Don’t Overdose on Medication Just Because You Can’t Read the Prescription Bottle

Do you have trouble reading your prescription bottles?  The print is small and hard to read especially for those who are visually impaired, blind, or have a reading disability.  Taking the wrong medication or taking too much or too little can be very dangerous.  There is a company, En-Vision America, who has come out with an answer to this problem; they now have accessible prescription labels.

 

En-Vision America has a product called ScripAbility where you work with a participating pharmacy to get your labels in large print, Braille, or even talking labels with a special machine.  As long as you use a participating pharmacy, all these options are free to the consumer.

 

Photo of ScripTalk Machine

The machine for reading the labels is a half-moon shaped device which is approximately 7 inches by 6 inches and about 2 inches thick.  It has 3 buttons on it (NEXT, READ, and PREVIOUS).  This machine reads the electronic tag on the bottle which contains the same data found on the printed label such as patient name, drug name, dosage and instructions, prescription number and date, and pharmacy information.  There is also a ScripTalk smartphone app which works as the reader for people who are tech savvy, and the company is currently working on an iPhone app for the ScripTalk.

 

Currently there is only one pharmacy in North Dakota who has the equipment for these special labels and that is Medical Pharmacy in Fargo; but if you get your prescriptions through the mail, there are many mail order companies who provide this service such as CVS, Walmart, Humana, and Aetna.

For someone who has a visual or print impairment, this service can be a lifesaver.  The website has much information: https://www.envisionamerica.com/products/scripability/

 

What can you do if you need this service?  Go to your local pharmacy and talk to them about this program.  The price range for implementing the software for the pharmacy ranges from $500-$3500 based on customized solutions and style of the pharmacy (mail order versus chain versus independent stores).   Pharmacists can call 1-800-890-1180  for more information on how to become a participating pharmacy.

 

En-Vision America was founded in 1996 by a father and son team, Phil Raistrick and Dave Raistrick, as the family was struggling to help relatives who had gone blind.  They built this product and others in the basement of their home in Illinois.   In 2002, they landed a contract with the Veterans Administration and have been the exclusive providers for 15 years.

As many as 1.9 million drug-related injuries occur each year due to prescription errors or adverse reactions.  ScripAbility can help you stay independent and safe even when you are unable to read your pill bottles on your own.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Further Reading

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