Express Scripts to cover cost of wireless 'smart' pill containers

The concept of "smart" pill bottles is not new, but until now, it was just a niche product not covered by insurance.

That's changing. This month, pharmacy benefits manager Express Scripts will begin a trial of electronic bottle caps for pill containers that remind people to take their meds. The top, called a GlowCap, flashes orange when it's time to take the meds. After an hour, the device starts beeping every five minutes, which becomes increasingly persistent. The GlowCap, from a Cambridge, Mass.-based company called Vitality, can be programmed to call or send a text message to the patient or a caregiver as a reminder.

Express Scripts is covering the cost of the devices, which retail for about $100, to see if the reminders help improve medication compliance. The company also will study whether patients have privacy concerns about the caps.

For further details:
- read this Wall Street Journal story