Video-based Directly Observed Therapy system implemented in adherence-related study of Hepatitis C Virus drug, Harvoni

BALTIMORE, MD. (October 15, 2015)

emocha’s medication adherence application, miDOT, is now being used to secure medication adherence in a study of Hepatitis C Virus patients at the University of Colorado. Patients will record themselves taking their medication every day using a secure emocha smartphone application. Study personnel will then review the video, assessing adherence using emocha’s patient engagement platform. A series of automatic reminders and notifications connects patients with study personnel helping them to stay on track through completion of therapy. 

In the United States, an estimated 3-4 million persons are chronically infected with HCV, and approximately half are unaware of their status. Over time, HCV can lead to long-term complications, including cirrhosis, liver cancer and death. Recent advances by companies such as Gilead Sciences and Abbvie have revolutionized HCV therapy, with oral options achieving high levels of HCV cure if taken correctly. Securing adherence is a high priority for both health care providers and payers, not only because of the potential benefits, but also because of the high costs for these medications – up to $1,000 per pill, or more than $80,000 for the entire course. The study is run by Dr. Jennifer Kiser, Associate Professor and Associate Director of the Center for Translational Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacogenomics at the University of Colorado Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences: “There is extreme resistance to treating Hepatitis C in drug users predicated on the assumption that this population will have poor adherence. The result is an absence of data on the pharmacokinetics and adherence-efficacy relationships for DAA in drug users. Without these data, drug users are denied life-saving treatment and the spread of HCV continues. We are thrilled to use miDOT to perform directly observed dosing and monitor adherence in our study participants. The pharmacology and adherence data generated through this study will promote the treatment of those most affected by Hepatitis C.” The aims of the study are threefold: to define and compare direct acting antivirals (DAA) pharmacokinetics in drug users undergoing miDOT vs. without miDOT; determine DAA concentrations associated with gradients of adherence; and establish the relationship between DAA adherence and HCV cure. 

“Actual verified adherence data is difficult to obtain for any regimen, but critical especially in this case due to the far-reaching health and financial implications,” says emocha CEO Sebastian Seiguer. “We are excited that our videobased solution can help patients make the most of these life-saving therapies by driving successful, timely completion.” 

Dr. Kiser is a member of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases / Infectious Diseases Society of America Guidelines Panel for Recommendations for Testing, Managing, and Treating Hepatitis C. 

About emocha Mobile Health

emocha empowers every patient to take every dose of medication through video technology and scalable human engagement. Patients use a smartphone application to video record themselves taking their medication. Providers or emocha Adherence Coaches use a secure web portal to assess adherence and engage with patients. The platform is being used by public health departments, clinical trials, hospitals, health centers, and managed care organizations to radically improve medication adherence for patients with tuberculosis, opioid use disorder, hepatitis C, diabetes, and other chronic and infectious diseases. Learn more at www.emocha.com.

Contact: Michelle Mendes| email: mmendes@emocha.com | phone: 410.928.4016