Among chronic diseases, cancer has one of the most expensive treatments with an average total cost of $150,000. The average monthly cost of chemotherapeutics, excluding administrative fees, is $10,000. As a result, 64% of cancer patients report cost as a barrier to healthcare and 46% are forced to reduce spending on necessities such as food and clothing. At the same time, cancer interventions are frequently modified due to the 75% failure rate of chemotherapeutic agents. Due to adverse reactions, progression of disease, or death, 41% of cancer patients will have unfinished prescriptions that are discarded. Because of this, the annual amount of wasted unexpired oral chemotherapeutics equates to over $3 billion. This waste unnecessarily burdens patients, insurance companies, manufacturers, residential healthcare facilities, and the American taxpayer.
With rising pharmaceutical prices, redistribution of medications that would otherwise be discarded could enable individuals to receive necessary drugs without the associated financial burden. MediCircle is a pharmaceutical redistribution company that collects unused, unexpired oral chemotherapeutics and distributes the medication to cancer clinics. The chemotherapy is then delivered and prescribed to individuals. MediCircle uses cryptographic technology to ensure reliability, security, safety, quality, and compliance with FDA and New Jersey regulations. Previous records about each prescription packages’ manufacturing and transport are integrated into our database to create a comprehensive history of the pharmaceutical agents. Solely FDA approved unexpired, untampered chemotherapeutics are eligible for donation, as patient safety is at the forefront of our mission. Our pharmacists check every pill received and perform quality assurance assessments to guarantee the medication from our repository meets the highest standards. Medical redistribution decreases healthcare waste, lowers the cost burden on the healthcare system associated with medication nonadherence due to financial strain, saves healthcare facilities money by lowering disposal rates, and reduces incinerated pharmaceuticals’ environmental contamination. Our team has conducted over 150 market research interviews to determine how to best benefit all relevant stakeholders, especially patients. 96% of potential donors interviewed reported a desire for a new way to dispose of unused medicine. Our research indicates that healthcare facilities and patients are cognizant of the amount of pharmaceutical waste they produce and are excited to potentially participate in redistribution. The MediCircle team plans to obtain regulatory approval from the New Jersey Board of Pharmacy and Department of Health by 2Q21. In addition, a minimal viable product should be completed by 2Q21 through the Hatch Health Accelerator and partnerships with Lifespan, Ximedica, Medullan, and NEMIC. Beta testing and a pilot program will be completed by 3Q21. MediCircle will launch at the start of 4Q21. MediCircle aims to work within the healthcare system’s current limitations to minimize health inequities. We believe cost should not deter patients from receiving life-saving medication. MediCircle will create a scalable pharmaceutical redistribution model to expand across the nation so all individuals in need can reap the benefits.