Real-time electronic adherence monitoring is feasible, comparable to unannounced pill counts, and acceptable

Jessica E. Haberer, Gregory K. Robbins, Michele Ybarra, Alexandra Monk, Kathleen Ragland, Sheri D. Weiser, Mallory O. Johnson, David R. Bangsberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Second generation electronic medication adherence monitors provide real-time data on pill bottle opening behavior. Feasibility, validity, and acceptability, however, have not been established. Med-eMonitor is a multi-compartment adherence device with reminder and education capacity that transmits data through a telephone connection. Monthly adherence levels were measured for 52 participants over approximately 3 months using the Med-eMonitor (unadjusted and adjusted for participant confirmed dosing) and unannounced pill counts. HIV RNA was assessed before and after the 3-month period. Acceptability of Med-eMonitor was determined. Over 92% of Med-eMonitor data was transmitted daily. Unannounced pill counts significantly correlated with adjusted MedeMonitor adherence (r = 0.29, P = 0.04). HIV RNA significantly correlated with unannounced pill counts (r = -0.34, P = 0.02), and trended toward a significant correlation with unadjusted Med-eMonitor adherence (r = -0.26; P = 0.07). Most, but not all, participants liked using the Med-eMonitor. Med-eMonitor allows for realtime adherence monitoring and potentially intervention, which may be critical for prolonging treatment success.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)375-382
Number of pages8
JournalAIDS and Behavior
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • HIV antiretroviral therapy
  • Real-time adherence monitoring

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases


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