Sven Beichler, Founder and CEO, TOM Medications
The former US Surgeon General C. Everett Coop once famously said, “Drugs don’t work in patients who don’t take them.” Poor adherence to medications and drug therapies is a growing concern for the healthcare system. In fact, studies reveal that approximately 50% of patients do not take their chronic medications as prescribed. According to the Swiss Federal Office of Public Health, almost a quarter of the population in Switzerland is chronically ill and thus relies on regular medications. And approximately 40% of these people either do not take medications or take them incorrectly. This reduces the effectiveness of the therapy and leads to 30 billion additional costs per year.
Thus, with a vision to increase adherence to therapy, a Zurich-based startup, Innovation 6 AG, also known as TOM Medications launched a smartphone application, TOM. The application (available for Android and iOS – iOS= https://tom-medications.onelink.me/81IO/23a31443 Android = https://tom-medications.onelink.me/81IO/76ed72b3) lets users record their therapy or select the drug from the database with over 400,000 official drugs. This creates a virtual medicine cabinet that can be updated at any time. The user-friendly app helps patients to consistently keep track of their medication and stock while ensuring data privacy. To remind the patient to take medications, it sends timely notifications of all the medication. The TOM app has now sent millions of reminders to its 70,000 users across Europe.
“Launched 9 months ago, with 4000 daily active TOM users, several million scheduled medication intakes have been processed with a treatment adherence of 76% – which is 28% higher than the CH average of 60% (this would mean a reduction in health care costs in CH of CHF 10 billion),” opines Sven Beichler, the Founder and CEO of TOM Medications.
Increasing Adherence in All Aspects of Medication Management
Before developing the TOM app, the diligent team at TOM Medications spent over 10 months in creating a prototype, tested it with over a hundred patients, and had countless discussions with healthcare service providers. After receiving enough feedback from patients, the TOM app was developed and finally released in July 2020 with great success.
“Before you can solve a problem, you have to know it first. This is a big problem because the patient cannot remember everything when he is checked by the doctor and the doctor only knows what he has prescribed and not what other doctors have prescribed, or what other non-prescription medication the patient has taken – or how far the patient has adhered to the activities (e.g. rehab),” asserts Sven.
“Therefore, TOM focuses on the knowledge of the course of therapy in the past, the present, and the future. In understanding the therapy application, the patient and the health care providers can effectively intervene and improve the therapy. But first, the knowledge about it has to be there and this is what the TOM app makes possible, adds Sven.
The main difference between TOM and other solutions is that TOM has managed to make a digital solution accessible to a broad population, with which one can easily manage even complex therapies. TOM uses artificial intelligence to increase compliance and adherence in all aspects of medication management along the customer journey and to detect deviations from therapies at an early stage.
Creating Added Value for Customers
The customer-centric company believes that customer satisfaction is achieved by creating added value for the customer and continuously adapting and increasing it. TOM achieves this by developing 90% of its products based on patient feedback. Every 2 weeks, it publishes an update with improvements that have come from the community.
“The only relevant focus of all our work and activity in the company is directed towards the customer. Customer centricity is not a process for us. It is our DNA and culture in all activities and decisions,” opines Sven.
Blazing the Path Forward for Healthier Tomorrow
Apart from its efficient and innovative medication management solutions, what sets TOM Medications apart is its distinctive work culture. Being a completely new and decentralized organization with no office, TOM Medications allows all employees and partners to work worldwide wherever and however they want to. “There are no working hours or holiday controls. There are only tasks to be done. That’s all and it works perfectly,” affirms Sven.
Backed with such an agile and highly flexible work culture, client-centric approach, and value-proposition, TOM Medications continues increasing drug compliance while combating the cost explosion in the healthcare sector. Moving ahead, the company aspires to scale into new countries and enhance the app with new advanced features. “TOM will be known in the world for providing a centralized solution for therapy monitoring and medication management. In Switzerland, the TOM app (https://www.tommedications.com)is already the most widely used Swiss solution for medication management,” concludes Sven.