Spectroscopic presciption verification system

Period of Performance: 03/01/2008 - 02/28/2009

$568K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Centice Corporation
Morrisville, NC 27560
Principal Investigator

Abstract

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Prescription dispensing errors at a pharmacy are a problem on a national level, at a rate of about 4 errors per day in a pharmacy filling 250 prescriptions daily. This translates to a gigantic amount of 51 million prescription errors per year with about 3 billion prescriptions being filled. There are as many as 7,000 deaths reported annually in the United States from incorrect prescriptions. To address this problem, Centice proposes to develop a fast, accurate and affordable system for spectroscopically identifying and verifying prescription medicines at the point of sale (heretofore referred to as the Prescription Verification System, or "PVS"). Currently, verification is performed manually by way of visual inspection. The pharmacist opens the prescription vial and examines the appearance of the pills. If the pills in the vial appear to visually match those in a reference photograph, the medicine is considered to be verified. There are serious adverse consequences with this current practice such as: Excessive cost of manual verification, High false positive rate due to human error, and Ineffective against counterfeit drugs. The PVS will utilize a new generation of Raman spectroscopic sensor based on multimodal multiplex spectroscopy. The key technology objectives are to develop and optimize the sensor technology required to make the chemical identifications within the parameters allowed by this demanding commercial application. Some of the challenges include identifying the different dosage levels of a prescription drug, reducing the background fluorescence in some drugs. The PVS system has the potential to lower the cost of delivering prescription medicines to consumers as well as improving the efficacy of patient care by reducing human errors and catching dangerous counterfeit medicines at the point of sale. Centice proposes to develop a fast, accurate and affordable system for spectroscopically identifying and verifying prescription medicines at the point of sale. This system will reduce the prescription dispensing errors at pharmacies. Currently dispensing errors are a problem on a national level, at a rate of about 4 errors per day in a pharmacy filling 250 prescriptions daily. Public health is seriously affected due to prescription errors, including as many as 7,000 deaths annually in the United States. This system is developed to address these issues.