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Products and Services
Sunapto will initially develop and market one product and two companion services to enhance the product.
- MedCabinet, an automatic pill dispensing system. Its purpose is to facilitate medication compliance/adherence and alleviate other common problems with medication usage in the home, such as double dosing, losing pills and forgetting to take pills. The MedCabinet will dispense the correct medication at the right time, and will notify the user.
- MedCabinet Monitoring Service provides secure website access to details about the MedCabinet’s dispensing activities.
- MedCabinet Notification Service provides caregiver notification of events that may disrupt the MedCabinet’s dispensing activity or the user’s medication compliance.
The technology used in the MedCabinet will contain items subject to patent protection.
3.1 Product and Service Description
A detailed and technical description of Sunapto’s initial product and service line follows:
The MedCabinet is an automatic pill dispensing system. The MedCabinet will dispense the correct medication at the right time, and will notify the user of the medication’s availability. The MedCabinet provides protection against both serious and minor complications caused by drug-related problems, especially in the elderly. The MedCabinet is a single user product and is not intended to dispense medications to multiple users.
The MedCabinet has some specific safety features. The medications in the MedCabinet are secured under lock and key. In the case of a caregiver, this protects the medications from tampering by the person under care. In all instances, this protects the medications from unauthorized access from others. The MedCabinet has a battery backup system to ensure proper dispensing during a power outage.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) – Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH) monitors and controls medical devices. It is expected that the FDA will classify the MedCabinet as a class I device. The FDA requires a manufacturer to register its class I device but it does not require a premarket notification application or a clearance from the FDA before marketing the device. As required by the FDA, the MedCabinet will be registered 30 days before manufacturing starts.
MedCabinet Monitor Service
The MedCabinet monitor service allows third parties to monitor the product’s dispensing activity. The monitoring activity is accessible by secure Web access.
MedCabinet Notification Service
The MedCabinet notification service allows third parties to be notified if a significant event occurs in the product’s dispensing activity. The notification service supports notifications by e-mail, telephone, fax or pager. This service can be configured to contact the user in addition to third parties.
3.2 Competitive Comparison
There are two options for organizing daily medications: the traditional weekly plastic pillbox and an electronic version of the weekly pillbox. Both options rely on someone manually separating the pills into the proper location and do not account for multiple medications that are consumed at different intervals.
If someone is having trouble remembering to take their medications, a number of compliance aids are available; ranging from simple pillboxes to services that will call to remind them to take their pills.
- Daily or weekly pillboxes permit distribution of medications into individual compartments based on the time of day the pills are to be taken. These can be obtained from a pharmacist – sometimes free.
- Various electronic devices are available, including stands and caps that fit on the bottle and clocks or watches that can be set to alert a user when it is time to take their medicine.
- Automated dispensers will meter out pills and alert a user to take them.
- Computer programs and pagers are available to remind a user of medication times.
- Some pharmacies and home health agencies offer telephone reminder services.
The cost varies widely – from zero for free pillboxes to several hundred dollars for automated dispensers and reminder services.
The closest product to the MedCabinet is the MED-Pharmacy II, or MP.2, developed by Home Medical Services LLC.
Sunapto is a technology company that develops product concepts, and supplies the intelligence to these products in the form of software development. The establishment and maintenance of a partnership to manufacture their products will be crucial. There are multiple contract manufacturers in the marketplace. Sunapto will look to form a partnership with one of these manufacturers to develop and produce the MedCabinet. Some of the essential attributes that the partner Sunapto selects will have are listed below.
- Experience in the medical device field.
- Experience dealing with the FDA.
- Product development capabilities from product design/engineering to design for manufacturability.
- Order Fulfillment.
- Depot and Repair.
Technology affects Sunapto, its manufacturing partner and the MedCabinet in a variety of ways. As mentioned in the Fulfillment section, the contract manufacturer plays a crucial role in Sunapto’s success. A part of the evaluation of their contract manufacturer will be how the manufacturer monitors and implements changes in manufacturing technology.
The MedCabinet will use both hardware and software technology to perform its function. The technology chosen in these areas will be carefully selected to match a determined price and performance point. The technology in the MedCabinet will be updated as needed to keep a competitive price and performance point, but it is not anticipated to change as rapidly as today’s technology market.
The companion monitoring and notification service for the MedCabinet relies on Internet and database technologies. As changes occur in these technologies, Sunapto will incorporate these changes to benefit their customers.
The MedCabinet will contain patentable items that will require proper filings by a registered patent attorney once created. Utility patents currently provide owners of the patent a 20-year window from the time of filing to exclude others from using the technology.
3.5 Sales Literature
Sales literature for Sunapto and the MedCabinet remains to be developed.
3.6 Future Products and Services
Plans for future development by Sunapto include additional capabilities and enhancements to the MedCabinet product line. It is the objective of Sunapto to both innovate and market its products. Once an industry reputation has been achieved and marketing channels opened, expansion into other healthcare and medical device areas becomes potentially rewarding.