Office of Technology Transfer – University of Michigan

Artificial Intelligence Text Messaging Support for Medication Adherence

Technology #6157

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Lawrence An
Managed By
Drew Bennett
Associate Director - Software Licensing 734-615-4004
Patent Protection
US Patent Pending
Addressing medication nonadherence by mobile phone: Development and delivery of tailored messages
Research in Social and Administrative Pharmacy., 2014
A randomized trial of an avatar-hosted multiple behavior change intervention for young adult smokers.
J Natl Cancer Inst Monogr. 2013 Dec;2013(47):209-15. doi: 10.1093/jncimonographs/lgt021., 2013

Lapses in patient medication adherence are increasingly recognized as a significant source of waste in our health care system. It is estimated that non-adherence along with suboptimal prescribing, drug administration, and diagnosis could result in as much as $290 billion per year in avoidable medical spending or 13 percent of total health care expenditures. Poor adherence often leads to preventable worsening of disease, posing serious and unnecessary health risks, particularly for patients with chronic illnesses. Promising approaches have emerged in peer-reviewed literature and in targeted initiatives that have utilized methods to induce behavior change in patients. However, questions remain as to how the most promising approaches can be implemented for a diverse patient population.

A leading view is that mobile health technology could provide the platform for reaching a large number of people, while delivering messages tailored to the intended patient population. A strong nationwide investment in health information technology should have the effect of providing patients and clinicians with information they currently lack to devise appropriate drug regimens and provide adequate follow-up. This technology could have the combined effect of improving patient care and lowering health care costs.

Artificial Intelligence Text Messaging Support for Medication Adherence

Mobile health technology is a rapidly growing area for developing systems to provide more effective doctor and patient communication. As more and more people are turning to mobile phone technology for news, social communication, and entertainment content, integration of health care concepts into mobile technology is a logical step to improve patient communication. However, simple messaging systems have found to provide only a modest benefit and over time patients tend to disregard them. University of Michigan researchers have proposed the development of an artificial intelligence software system that utilizes elements of behavior theory to affect patient behaviors and improve medication adherence. This software platform could provide an important mechanism to improve patient care, lower health care costs, and potentially reach a global market.


  • Improvement for patient medication adherence
  • Software could also help with instructions and care after surgery, physical therapy, and other disease specific issues


  • Tailored messages versus generic reminders
  • Adaptable to multiple device platforms