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FDA Considering Digitally Driven Kiosks for Self Diagnosis With Specific Conditions Via Algorithmic Processes

Posted Mar 23 2012 10:19pm

If you have heard or read the news of late it has been all over that the FDA is considering making certain drugs available over the counter that are now prescription only.  With that thought they are also investigating to see if a Kiosk image would be able to assist with helping patients find the correct medications along with doing a self diagnosis.  We have seen the kiosks that tele connect but these would be without the pharmacist and all done by the machine.  You can see what they have done in the UK with tele-pharmacists at the link below.

The concern though is the usual error factor and mis interpretations and patients getting the wrong medication.  In essence though when you think about it this is not much different than today and buying the wrong thing when we self diagnose for the flu and other ailments we may have, except this is offering more knowledge available and if some of the current prescription drugs become OTC this is a concern as we are talking new drugs out there.  The targeted conditions/drugs presently being looked at are asthma, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and migraines so there’s plenty of room for discussion here as well as development of an algorithm that could do the job without risking safety. 

I’m not sure we may see this anytime soon for some of the conditions as there’s a lot of work involved here with writing the code, testing and so forth.  I could see it initially available to perhaps do refills as a starting point.  The FDA has a way to go here with this project, but nothing will occur until decisions are made about which drugs come off the prescription list I would guess and there’s still the question of enough engineers at the FDA.  BD 

Certain prescription drugs may soon be available to consumers through digital kiosks, rather than a doctor's diagnosis, underscoring the methods technology is transforming healthcare.

The Food and Drug Administration is mulling digitally-driven patient kiosks where people can self-diagnose for specific conditions through an algorithm-based survey. The process would drop the prescription requirement for certain treatments and common ailments.

Self-diagnosis would let users get medical care in a more convenient way. The kiosk concept under FDA consideration indicates the regulatory agency is taking a serious step towards using digital technology to deliver healthcare, moving away from relying on third-party app developers.

As the FDA hashes out its plans to eliminate the need for prescriptions, relying on modern technology is one way to streamline a process to help save medical professionals valuable resources in an overburdened system. But to make sure patient care remains a top priority, the FDA and industry professionals are sure to carefully determine how to make the process work without compromising a potentially life-changing diagnosis.


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