In this March 15, 2018 photo, public health nurse Peggy Cooley of the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department, seen on the phone screen, uses Skype video to remotely monitor a patient taking antibiotics for tuberculosis at home in Lakewood, Wash. Researchers are testing how well smartphone apps that monitor pill-taking work when medication matters. Experts praise the efficiency, but some say the technology raises privacy and data security concerns. (AP Photo/Manuel Valdes)

Selfie medicine: Phone apps push people to take their pills

March 28, 2018 - 12:31 am

SEATTLE (AP) — Researchers are testing new smartphone apps that push patients to take their pills using selfie-style videos.

Experts praise the efficiency, but some say the technology raises privacy and data security concerns.

The apps work with a smartphone's camera. A patient shoots a selfie-style video while taking their pills, then uploads that video proof to the clinic for review.

Fans say the technology addresses a big problem: About half of drugs for chronic conditions aren't taken as prescribed because of cost, side effects or patient forgetfulness.

Health departments are using the apps to keep tabs on tuberculosis patients. Researchers see potential in hepatitis C, opioid addiction and other conditions where medication matters.

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