Medication administering help/advice needed please


Registered User
Jan 9, 2006
Aldershot, UK
Hi all, I am hoping that somebody can help. My grandmother has Alzheimers, which appears to be advancing quite quickly. At the moment, she is maintaining her independence and living in her own home. As with many people her age (85) she is required to take various medications each day. The problem is how do we ensure she takes the right medication at the right time. At present we are using a pill dispenser that we put the relevant medicine in for the relevant day, and then telephone her to ensure that it is taken. However, we are now finding that this is not working as it should, and she sometimes does not take the medicine, simply forgetting, even after a phone call reminder. Other times we find that she has taken 2 days worth, or that in her confusion, all the pills for the week are scattered on the table. Has anyone any experience with the Pivotell Automatic Pill Dispenser, or a similar product, or could they offer any advice as to how to deal with this issue?I should add that my mother is her main carer, but due to distance and work commitments cannot see my grandmother every day. Thanks.


Registered User
Jan 3, 2006
Medication advice Needed

Lee, I've just read your message and can say that I am experencing the same problems. I was told to get a sealed medi-pack from the chemist on the advice of a carer. I managed to get mom's medication made up in this pack last week but the chemist needed time to prepare it and it costs £5.00.

I took it to her last Saturday and I gave her the medication over that weekend, on the Monday am, the first day that a carer had called to see mom, she discovered that mom had taken 4 days worth in one go.

I was told about a device which has a timer and the medication can only be release at the time the machine is set. I am not sure if it is the Pivotell Automatic Pill dispenser that you refer to but I am now going to look on the internet to see if it is the type of devise that I need.

I do sympathise with you, even when I phone my mom, she will forget as soon as she puts the phone down. I now have to hide the tablets and have left instructions for the carer, who at the moment is battling with mom to let her help.

Hope you sort your problem out, I shall watch with interest.

Kind Regards


Registered User
Jan 4, 2006
Lee,We had the same problem with my Dad. Phone calls could take up to half an hour before I could be sure that the medication was taken. Would it be a good idea to get a care agency involved? The medication could be kept in a safe place where your Gran couldn't get them, but the carer could. Carers arn't usually able to directly give the medication but can supervise, which means that your Grans independence wouldn't suffer too much. It would also mean that when your Mum can't visit, someone will have checked that your Gran is OK and she has had a chat to someone. Hope you find a solution that works for you. Best wishes, Zan.


Registered User
Sep 19, 2005

Hi Lee
I think Zan is right, the best solution is to get a carer involved if there are no relative's able to administer the drugs. As Zan said the carer can't give the drug but can supervise. There is a small charge for this service but it will surely give you peace of mind.
Best wishes


Registered User
Mar 23, 2005
Hi Lee and Olly,

I would also agree with zan and suptowngirl that having someone visit your granmother/mother daily is the best solution. Pill dispensers and similar systems seem like a good solution in the early stages of AD, but over time someone with AD will find it difficult to learn new systems and retain information.

Supportiing someone living alone with AD can be a very challenging task - a constant juggling act. Does your grandmother/mother have a social worker? If not, I would encourage you to get one as a good social worker can be a really useful resource in helping to identify services to help someone with AD live as independently as possible.

As for the cost of the daily visit - have you looked in to Attendance Allowance? It is fairly easy to claim and is not means tested. It is paid at two rates, either £40 or £60 a week depending on the level of help needed.

You can read more about it here:

Take care,



Registered User
Jan 9, 2006
Aldershot, UK
Thank you for your comments. In view of what has been said I will steer away from the automatic pill dispenser, and will look into ways to ensure that somebody is available to help her with her medication. I am glad that I have come across this forum, as people need all the support they can get at times like these. I feel that my mother is really struggling with being a carer at the moment, and want to help in any way I can, so every bit of help/advice is very much appreciated.


Registered User
Jun 24, 2004
Hello Lee,

Just to let you know that there is an Alzheimers group ( Carers support group) that meets in Fleet once a month, and an Alzheimer Cafe that meets in Farnborough, St. Peters Parish Centre, 60 Church Avenue, Farnborough (next meeting Jan. 21st 7.30 - 9.30) if you want more information or tel. nos. send me a private message. Your local social services should have all the relevant information, we have been going to these meetings for 2 years now, and have gained lots of information as well as making lots of lovely friends.