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Challenges and Safety Considerations with Pill Organizers

Despite their popularity, studies show that only 53% to 68% of older adults correctly use their medications while using pill organizers. The most common mistake is taking medicine from the wrong compartment, which can disrupt the entire week's schedule.

Despite their widespread use, there are no recommendations for or against the use of pill organizers. And according to some experts and scientific studies, they may not even be the best option for everyone.

For example, older adults or individuals with motor or cognitive impairments may struggle to open pill organizers and access needed pills. In some cases, they may attempt to flip the pill organizer onto their other hand, causing pills to fall out or get mixed up, especially when the organizer has one lid covering all compartments.


Another common issue is that the same compartment often stores multiple pills. If you need to skip or switch out one of your meds, these tasks can become challenging when faced with a cluster of identical white pills. Additionally, weekly pill organizers may not be the best choice for those who need to separate medications to be taken before and after meals.

Moreover, filling up a pill organizer can be time-consuming and requires some understanding of how to organize and handle a weekly schedule. Although pill organizers with alarms can aid medication adherence, some users report that the alarm often triggers at the wrong time, the electronic display is small and difficult to see, and the buttons are small and hard to press .

Finally, one study observed that the ink marking the days of the week on each compartment wore off after two weeks of use, increasing the potential for medication errors .