AstraZeneca have entered a deal with drug delivery device service provider Bang & Olufsen Medicom to develop a new electronic monitor that can tell whether patients are correctly taking their medication or not.
The monitor will initially be used to measure patient compliance with drug delivery devices during clinical trials, with the aim of later expanding its use into products in the market.
Further details of the agreement are confidential, said a statement from Bang & Olufsen Medicom.
Reluctance in completing a prescribed course of treatment or failing to take medication as directed is a particularly widespread problem, especially in children.
In a recent US survey, nearly two-thirds (64 per cent) of patients who were prescribed regular medication reported that they did not or forgot to take their medication, with 11 per cent saying that this has happened "often" or "very often".
Non-compliance with medication can have serious consequences, including hospitalisation and possibly even death and in addition, is said to cost pharmaceutical companies $30bn (€24.9bn) each year in prescriptions and repeat prescriptions that are never filled, as well as imposing additional healthcare costs on government and society.