The sense of euphoria and release that comes from taking prescription painkillers can often lead to users getting addicted and possibly even overdoses if things get out of hand. To prevent this from happening, students at Brigham Young University have developed an advanced pill dispenser that only releases meds on a doctor's or pharmacist's preset schedule.
Dubbed the Med Vault, because it was designed to be difficult to compromise or tamper with, the pill dispenser can only be opened by a pharmacist when connected to a computer via a USB cable. The Med Vault can actually store and distribute pills for a variety of prescriptions, but only as programmed by the pharmacist. And as an added safety measure the patient has to enter an access code every time a pill is ready, to prevent others from stealing their meds.
The students at Brigham Young worked with a Las Vegas paramedic familiar with patients overdosing to realise the project, and he's already filed a patent for the Med Vault and is optimistic about commercialising the prototype. [Brigham Young University]