MedApp smart alarms: using data to improve medication intake

Correct intake of medication is important, but multiple medicines and various intake moments can make it rather complex. TU/e startup MedApp and data company Sentiance therefore introduce new smart alarms. Sentiance uses data of end users in order to determine the best moments for MedApp medication alarms. This means the smart alarms go off at moments that are most suited for users. Data is thus directly used to offer personalized healthcare, which is unique in eHealth!

Therapy adherence

MedApp is a medical application that offers users more grip on their medication. Users can for example scan the barcodes of their medication and set at which times they are supposed to take their medication. As such, a personalized intake schedule is created, in which users can set alarms for their intake moments. Users will no longer forget their medication and thus therapy adherence is facilitated. MedApp’s alarms go off at moments set by the user. This means these alarms will also go off when the user is on the go, which can lead to missing an intake moment. The smart alarms however take into account when the user is not able to take his or her medication, decreasing the chance on a missed intake.

“the costs of therapy inadherence amount to billions of euros a year. MedApp helps to reduce these costs and improves the quality of life of medicine users.” – Pit Janssen (co-founder and pharmacist)

The MedApp smart alarms have been live for a few weeks now. To gain insights in how well the smart alarms performed MedApp decided to send out questionnaires to 250 users. Close to 75% of the users found the extra intake notification to be beneficial, 39% of these users indicated that without the extra intake notification they would have forgotten to take their medication. Thus, the smart alarms have positively influenced the therapy adherence of users.


The tooling developed by Sentiance follows the daily activities and routine of users. MedApp then links this data to therapy adherence. When a user for example travels to work every morning from 8 until 9, it is more difficult for this user to react to any alarms that are set that time. Sentiance transmits this information to MedApp and MedApp then later sends the user an extra intake reminder.Sentiance (amongst others supported by Samsung) already operate successfully in different corporate sectors, but were not yet active in healthcare. Through this collaboration Sentiance not only expand their field of work, but also contribute to a solution for a social problem.

Unique perspective on privacy

MedApp and Sentiance value the privacy of users. The retrieved data is therefore only used to optimize intake reminders for users. Information of users is in no way shared with others and data is only collected when the user has given explicit permission. This way the privacy of users is guaranteed.

“With these personalized intake notifications we offer our users customized care. This way the user gets even more involved with her or his treatment.” – Edwin Hermkens (co-founder and computer scientist)

Value of data

MedApp uses the by Sentiance inferred results to send users an extra intake notification. Users receive this notification on a later and more suitable time, which makes it unlikely that they will still forget their medication. The use of data therefore enables users to improve their therapy adherence. With improving therapy adherence, users get better quality of life and unnecessary costs are reduced.Besides improving therapy adherence, the value of data lies in the fact that users receive an extra reminder at adjusted times. This means users are offered a personalized and tailored experience. Data therefore creates direct advantage for users, namely customized care.Users get access to the smart alarms by turning on the Onderzoekmodule (Android) or Testlab (iOS). This can be done under ‘more’ in the main menu. Once this module is turned on, the smart alarms can be activated.