WALTHAM, MA—Since KnowYourMeds officially launched its digital health app last September, more than 11,000 people have downloaded the app in the United States, Canada and Mexico. The app helps patients become more informed about their medications such as detailed information on side effects, adverse reactions, drug/food interactions, FDA warnings and relevant news articles.
The new app is free and is available on iPhone and Android devices as well as on KnowYourMeds website. The app, which is suitable for the patients who are taking multiple drugs to treat various chronic illnesses such as diabetes, offers pill reminders that assist patients adhere to their medications schedules. The app also has a health tracker tool where users are able to keep track of any adverse reactions they might experience while taking their various medications.
INDIA New England News recently spoke with KnowYourMeds founder and CEO Kim Shah about the successful launch of the app and the company’s future plans. Here are the excerpts from the interview:
INDIA New England News: Why did you start KnowYourMeds now?
Kim Shah: It is a fact that nowadays people are living longer, but unfortunately that also means that they are taking more and more drugs to do so. At the same time, there is little or no actionable information that is proactively available for users about all these drugs and diseases that they are living with. That is what we are solving with KnowYourMeds.
INE: What is KnowYourMeds?
KS: KnowYourMeds is a Digital Health App that we launched last September and I am excited to tell you that we have already had over 11,000 downloads so far. The app is designed for people who are living with one or more chronic illnesses, taking multiple drugs on a regular basis and want to be engaged in taking care of their own health.
INE: How does one get started?
KS: It is very simple. The app is available on iPhone and Android mobile devices as well as our website: www.knowyourmeds.com. Once you have downloaded the app, you are first asked to create a profile which includes your age, gender and ethnicity. Note, we are not asking for any personal information from the user. After that, you enter all the drugs that you are taking, prescription as well as over the counter. At the same time, you also create your own drug schedule in the app. If you have any known allergies, enter those as well.
INE: What does the app do for patients?
KS: KnowYourMeds provides a number of key benefits.
First, the app is using the world’s largest database of suspected side effects and adverse effects, along with AI driven insights to provide users with early identification of drug interactions as well as early detection of potential medication errors.
Second, the app helps users with adhering to their drug taking schedules by sending reminders on your phones or watches.
Third, the app provides users with an easy way to keep track of their health between doctor’s visits. Users are encouraged to keep a digital diary of any symptoms they feel are unusual and should be reported to their doctors.
Fourth, the app provides useful news and information that is relevant to the user – this can be notifications and warnings from the FDA, new research on their diseases, dietary considerations and so on.
INE: Do you have some examples?
KS: Absolutely. Let me start with a simple one. It is winter time now and hence it is flu season. It is quite common for people to take some combination of drugs such as Tylenol and Nyquil. Very few people realize that both of these drugs contain an ingredient called Acetaminophen, and it very important that they understand that going over the daily limit can be very dangerous to ones liver. Another quite common example
INE: How much does it cost?
KS: We have two versions. The app as I just described is free of charge for our users. The other one is a premium version of the app that will be available for a subscription of $15 per year. The premium version has some additional features such as the ability to create multiple profiles (eg elderly parents, children and so on). In the future, we will keep adding new features to both versions.
INE: What else are you working on?
KS: Glad you asked that question. We are talking with a number of strategic partners that are offering valuable services to the same audience. Let me give you a few examples. One of our partners offers telehealth services – easy and accessible online access to terrific doctors who can be anywhere in the country.
Another partner offers online nutrition advice – they have over 1000 registered dieticians around the country available at your convenience. We are also talking with partners who offer genetic as well as metabolomic testing to identify patient’s compatibility or lack thereof of various drugs. We will be rolling out these partnerships over the next few months.