Transcript Excerpts

 Order it

TechniTab Technologies DemiDose




Alisa Vickers/Helen Byrt





DemiDose Pill Splitter



Art Director:




Job #:


Code #:


Oct 25, 2005 FINAL

(see Programming Schedule for specific airtimes)






[Note: references in square brackets refer to sources in source deck]

Reporter on Cam

Reporter On Cam :

Welcome to Health and Technology News spotlight, where we take you across the globe in search of people and companies that are making an impact on our lives. I'm Wendy Burch.


Reporter On Cam :

On today's program we take a look at a remarkable new invention that could save you hundreds of dollars a year in medication costs.


Reporter On Cam :

It's called the DemiDose Pill Splitter and it's designed to cut your prescription medications – and your medication bills – in half.


Reporter On Cam :

Prescription medication costs are skyrocketing. Americans now spend over 150 billion dollars on prescription medications each year and this is set to double in the next five years. 1 [Reference 1, page 12a]

Generic footage of seniors

Reporter VO:

Seniors are hardest hit because they take twice as many prescription medications as younger people.


Reporter On Cam :

“How much of your monthly spending was on your prescription medicines?”

Senior in studio on camera.


Name of senior

Senior On Cam :

in her own words, to the effect of:

"A large part of my monthly spending was on my prescription medications. I was spending about $300 a month I'd say."


Reporter On Cam :

“What effect did this have on your quality of life?"

Stock footage of shopping mall, happy people buying clothes, buying food from a street vendor or in supermarket.

Senior On Cam :

"To make ends meet, I had to stop doing the things I enjoy most. I couldn't buy new clothes. Some weeks it was even a battle between medication and food. I worried all the time."

B-roll of pharmacy shelves

Reporter On Cam :

Many seniors have discovered a way of reducing their medication costs – by pill-splitting.

Reporter holds up 20mg tab of Lipitor in right hand

Graphic build:

"20 mg pill = $4"

Reporter then holds up 40 mg tab in left hand

Graphic build:

"40 mg pill = $4"

Reporter on Cam :

This is Lipitor, a common cholesterol-lowering medication. The 20 mg pill costs around 4 dollars,

while the 40mg pill……

also costs around 4 dollars.

People have started asking, why not split the larger tablet and get two small doses for the price of one?

Hands put Lipitor into DemiDose, depress lid…

Hand tips out two halves of Lipitor 40 mg from DemiDose into other hand

Reporter v/o

Now there's a new device that helps you do just that – conveniently, quickly and safely.

Invented by Dr. Peter Williams, the DemiDose Pill Splitter puts affordable medicines into everyone's hands.

Dr. Williams on cam

Caption: Peter Williams PhD

President of TechniTab Technologies

Dr. Williams:

Prompt question:

When did you come up with the idea for DemiDose?

Prompt question:

Why did you think of inventing a pill splitter?

What did you think would be the benefit to individuals using the product?

Dr. Williams' own words, to the effect of:

"I came up with the idea when I was…."[ Dr. Williams to supply story ]

"The high cost of prescriptions in addition to all the other necessities of life is a very real concern for many people."

"The aim of the DemiDose pill splitter is to give people the medications they need at huge cost savings. DemiDose allows people to safely and conveniently save 50% or more on the cost of their medications. Which means more money to spend on the good things of life..."

Hands take pill out of packaging, place on bill bed and insert pill bed into DemiDose.

Graphics of drug names roll past:

Norvasc, Accupril, Lipitor, Zocor, Pravachol, Synthroid,

Viagra, Cialis, Levitra, Zoloft, Zyprexa, Lexapro, Fosamax, Premarin, Levaquin, Imitrex oral, Zyrtec.

Names become the Y axis of a horizontal bar chart entitled: "Average cost savings with DemiDose"

Each bar rolls from left to right, with % savings appearing at the end as follows:

Reporter VO:

The secret of DemiDose's success is its specially designed pill bed that is custom fitted to each type of pill. You simply order the pill bed that you need.

DemiDose is currently available for 18 of the most common prescription medications, including Norvasc, Accupril, Lipitor, Zocor, Viagra, Zoloft, Premarin and many more.

Norvasc (31-50%), Accupril (50%), Lipitor (50%), Zocor (25-50%), Pravachol (27-50%), Synthroid (52-57%),

Viagra (50%), Cialis (50%), Levitra (50%), Zoloft (46%), Zyprexa (25-41%), Lexapro (49%), Fosamax (50%), Premarin (50%), Levaquin (43%), Imitrex oral(42-55%), Zyrtec (50%).

Reporter VO:

The cost savings over one year with DemiDose are dramatic. For example, Viagra users save up to 50% and Zoloft users save up to 46%.

Shot of DemiDose. Graphic build of price tag:

“Introductory price


Graphic build:

"Additional pill beds only $4.95"

Reporter VO:

For just $12.95 as an introductory price, the DemiDose Pill Splitter comes equipped with one complete set of pill beds for the drug of your choice.

Additional prescription pill bed sets are also available for $4.95.

Dr. Williams on cam

Dr. Williams:

After just 17 doses or less of most prescription medications, the DemiDose has already paid for itself.

Reporter on cam in studio

Reporter on cam:

Many physicians across the country are supportive of the practice of pill splitting.

Peter Williams on cam in studio

B-roll of doctor sitting opposite patient, talking to him or her and writing a prescription.

Dr. Williams:

Prompt questions:

Is pill-splitting a new idea?

How can DemiDose help patients stay well?

Answers questions in his own words. To the effect of:

“Pill-splitting isn't a new idea. Physicians, pharmacists and nurses have always split pills to tailor doses to children, for instance, or give more exact dosing.”

“A great medication is only a great medication if patients take it, and we know that many patients can't afford their prescriptions. Pill splitting ensures that patients get the prescription medications they need to help them stay well.”

External of Stanford Center for Research in Disease Prevention [stock footage]

Quote appears on screen:

Reporter v/o

Pill-splitting is also gaining the support of health-policy researchers - scientists who study how to make better use of healthcare resources.

Researchers at Stanford University Medical Center concluded that:

“When properly implemented, pill splitting can be a safe, viable cost-saving strategy…”


“When properly implemented, pill splitting can be a safe, viable cost-saving strategy…” 4 [Reference 4d]

"Depending on the pill, patients could save between 23 and 50 percent a year."

[Caption: reference – TBA]


"Depending on the pill, patients could save between 23 and 50 percent a year." 4 [Reference 4e]

Reporter on cam

Reporter on cam:

Big savings like these haven't gone unnoticed in the boardrooms of health insurers and Medicaid. They are starting to implement pill-splitting policies to fight rising drug costs. 5 [Reference 5, page 1f]

Jodie Brunsting on camera in studio


Jodie Brunsting, Pharm.D.
Director, Pharmacy Services
Sierra Health

Prompt questions:

What is flat pricing?

How does pill-splitting help both insurers and consumers?

How much did Sierra Health save after implementing a pill-splitting program?

[Or: How much do you calculate Sierra Health might save...]

Benefit manager's answers to the effect of:

"Flat pricing is when higher doses of prescription medications cost the same as lower doses."

“By splitting a higher dose of a drug both insurers and patients can save money.”

"Our health plan, which looks after xxxx people, saved $xxxx over 1 year with our pill-splitting program."

[ Or – if program not yet in place – "We calculate that our health plan, which looks after xxxx people, will save $xxxx over 1 year with a pill-splitting program."]

B-roll of Florida

Graphic overlay:

Pill-splitting of Zoloft and Paxil saved Florida 's Medicaid $4 million in the first year.

Reporter v/o

For the past four years, Florida 's Medicaid program has told patients who take 50 mg Zoloft or 10 milligram Paxil to split their pills.

This policy saved the agency about $4 million. 6 [Reference 6g]

External of Stanford again

Graphic build:

"Pill-splitting Do's and Dont's"


Talk to your doctor first

Don't split capsules or pills with special coatings

Reporter to camera:

The scientists at Stanford and other experts have come up with a list of do's and dont's for pill-splitting.

Most importantly, you should always talk to your doctor about whether pill-splitting is right for you .... 4 [Reference 4h]

and you should never split capsules or pills with special coatings. 4 [Reference 4i]

Jodie Brunsting on camera in studio

Jodie Brunsting:

Prompt questions:

"Are all pills suitable for splitting?"

"What are the safety issues with pill splitting?"

Ms. Brunsting will reply in her own words, to the effect of:

"Not all pills are suitable for splitting. Some prescription medications become physically unstable or don't work properly when split."

Dr. Peter Williams on camera in studio

Dr. Williams:

Prompt question:

What would you say about the criticism that some pills are not safe to split?

Answers questions in his own words. To the effect of:

“Safety is of paramount concern to us. DemiDose only has pill beds for pills that are safe to split. Anything that's not safe to cut, we simply won't make.”

Studio close-up shots of hands trying to split drugs with knives or razor blades, showing:

•  Pills flying off in all directions

•  Viagra, with knife slipping off

•  Small pill crumbling as it's cut

Jodie Brunsting:

Prompt question:

“Can you explain why some pills are physically difficult to split?”

Dr. Williams:

Prompt question:

"Why is DemiDose generally safer than knives or razorblades?"

Ms. Brunsting will reply in her own words, to the effect of:

“Some pills are also physically hard to split. Some are very small, or – like Viagra – have an unusual shape. Others are brittle and fall apart if you try and split them.”

Dr. Williams will reply in his own words, to the effect of:

"DemiDose is a better option than trying to split pills with knives or razor blades because you can't get an accurate split by these methods."

Reporter puts Lipitor into DemiDose, depresses lid…

Hand tips out two halves of Lipitor 40 mg from DemiDose into other hand.

Replaced by graphic build:

"DemiDose: 93% accurate or better"


"American Pharmaceutical Association Guidelines:

'Half-tablets need to be between 85% and 115% of target weight to be considered evenly split.'"

Reporter to camera:

Accuracy of dosing is crucial for patient safety. Because DemiDose holds each pill precisely, it cuts tablets into two equal halves...

.....accurate within 93% or better.

That's well within the guidelines of the American Pharmaceutical Association, which says that: 'Half-tablets need to be between 85% and 115% of target weight to be considered evenly split.' 5 [Reference 5, page 2 j]

Reporter and senior back in studio in interview setting

Reporter v/o

[ name of senior ]by age 70 you had prescriptions for high blood pressure, high cholesterol and arthritis: how did this affect your life?

[ Examples of health problems – if using a 'real' senior, her problems would be listed here]

Senior on cam.

Senior v/o

Prompt questions:

"What effect did the cost of your prescriptions have on your life?

Own words, to the effect of:

"The more prescription medications I had to take, the more expensive it was.

"To make ends meet I had to stop doing the things I enjoy most. I couldn't buy new clothes. Some weeks it was even a battle between medication and food. I worried all the time."

B-roll of doctor's office

Senior on camera:

Reporter VO:


Prompt questions:

"How did you feel when you realized you could split your pills and save a lot of money?"

After talking with her doctor, and explaining her financial concerns, [name's] doctor suggested that she try splitting her medication.

Own words, to the effect of: “Imagine my surprise, when my doctor told me that a lot of the medications I was currently on could be easily and safely split and that I could be saving a significant proportion of my monthly prescription costs. I was thrilled.”

Senior on camera


Prompt question:

What has the pill-splitting allowed you to do differently?

What is your outlook on life now?

To the effect of:

“Now I manage better and I've been given more freedom to make choices.”

“And I feel more in control… It's allowed me to continue living with more independence. I have more confidence in the future.”

Reporter on cam

Reporter on cam:

The DemiDose Pill Splitter. A small device that packs a big punch.

For Health and Technology News, I'm _________.


Anchor 2:

Thanks ________,

And remember , TechniTab indicates that you must consult with a doctor before using DemiDose.

B-roll Phone number and web address

Anchor 1:

For more information on the DemiDose Pill Splitter, visit the website

or call 1-877-SPLIT12