College of Engineering Unit:
Long term pill storage and retrieval has relied on the use of pill bottles dating back to the 19th century and very little has been done to change this system other than make the lids harder to open. The prescription drug market was projected to generate $1.03 trillion in 2021 and reach $1.4 trillion by 2026. In the United States alone about 66 percent of adults take prescription medication which means there is a large market associated with prescription medication storage and dispensing that needs some innovation.
The main opportunity we wish to target is the inconvenience and difficulty of interacting with pill bottles on a regular basis. Current pill bottles are difficult to use for some individuals and often result in spilled medication. Spilled medication is not only an inconvenience for the user but also a potential hazard as the medication could become contaminated or accidentally ingested by an animal or child. Comparable products on the market, such as a pill sorter, are aimed towards ensuring users do not forget about taking their medication, but do not address issues related to ease of use or ergonomics. Advanced products such as pill sorting machines rely on software and are quite expensive placing them out of reach for the average consumer, which leaves a gap in the market for a new medication storage and dispensing product. Our goal was to develop a product that will allow the user to seamlessly store and access their medication.
Our pill-dispensing unit sits on the customer’s counter as a way to conveniently store and easily dispense pills to the customer. This will solve problems many people have with current pill sorters such as spilling pills and being hard to use for people with dexterity issues. The top of the unit has an easy-to-open lid where the user pours pills into a receptacle for storage. The side of the unit has an ergonomically friendly handle that rotates the inner mechanisms of the device to easily dispense pills into a collection tray at the bottom of the device.