Mymemo wants to be the “world’s first automatic pill dispenser”
The patent-pending design recognises the risks in creating such a device so tried to design a way to minimise them as much as possible.
Studio Volpi was asked by two doctors (Roee Dvir and Giorgio Pizzagalli) to come up with a device that would help ensure patients took the correct pills at the right dosage, at the right time.
One of their stipulations was they wanted the medical device not to look like a medical device.
So, the design team drew inspiration from other countertop objects and appliances, deciding on something that looks halfway between a toaster and a piggy bank.
Cost was a crucial factor too, which prompted the use of a neutral plastic and cork—materials that lend themselves to most interiors.
More importantly than aesthetics however, was how the machine would work. “[Our] engineers first concentrated on the main task the dispenser needed to perform: safely holding a supply of the various medications, then selecting and picking the correct combination of pills at a given time, and handing them to the patients,” explains Studio Volti.
Mymemo uses an in-built electronic clock that triggers the mechanism at the desired time.
Inside, different containers hold the various types of medication, each one rotating into position for pick-up according to the therapeutic plan.
“First, gravity was considered, with a hatch positioned at the bottom of the pill containers opening up for the precise amount of time needed to let the exact desired number of pills fall through,” explains the studio.
Unfortunately, that method wasn’t reliable enough, while also needing lengthy and complicated settings every time the shape or weight of the pills changed. The solution came in the form of vacuum suction cups.
Connected and modular
“Connection to caregivers and doctors through an app is one of the innovative features of Mymemo,” explains the studio.
“Far from being a gadget, it helps monitor the patient’s compliance with the therapy in real time.
It also allows for the therapy, for instance the type of medication and the dosage, to be modified remotely and instantly. Mymemo can hold up to 4 different types of pills, tablets or capsules.”
“It is a fact that chronically ill patients start off by taking only a few pills every day but, in time, need to take up to 8 or 10 different drugs.
This is why Mymemo can manage up to two “slave” units for up to 12 different pills or capsules. This unique modular design is one of the key features of Mymemo – a tailored approach based on the patient’s needs.”
Everything is managed through an intuitive, user-friendly app (MymemoAPP), from filling the containers with up to 3 months supply of medication, to setting the therapeutic plan and modifying it at any given time.
Mymemo has an internal GSM, Bluetooth and SIM card so it does not require patients to have a home Wi-Fi system.
As for power, Mymemo plugs into the mains but also has a buffer battery guaranteeing an extra 24 hours energy supply in case of cut-offs.