Printed Electronics Tracking Patient Compliance
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Printed electronics are already at work in an electronic-diary-like package from Information Mediary Corp. (IMC; Ottawa, ON, Canada). Med-ic employs a printed sensor label embedded in each blister package. Using standard printing equipment and specialty inks developed by IMC (the inks were marketed under the XINK brand and were acquired by ICI Chemicals in June 2006), every printed Med-ic paper label has one printed sensor for each dose contained in the blister package, connected by “paper wire” printed with silver inks, explains Michael Petersen, COO of IMC. He says that the ink consists of environmentally friendly water-based silver and carbon inks printable on standard paper, label stock, pharmaceutical heat-seal board, and plastic substrates.
The printed sensors eliminate the need to connect one conductive line from the RFID tag to each tablet position in the package. “This greatly reduces the complexity of design, cuts down on the number of electrical connections, and allows high-volume manufacturing at lower costs,” they report. “The same inks used in our printed sensors are also used in printing RFID antennas, driving down costs of production and increasing flexibility of design in that market.”