DialPak III

Ortho-McNeil DialPak III (birth control system)

The original DialPak birth control pill container was introduced in 1965, designed to help women keep track of the “one-pill-a-day” regimen. In 1999 I helped re-think the third generation of the DialPak, reducing waste by incorporating a replaceable ring of pills to be replenished every 28 days.

In perfect use birth control pills are 99.9% effective. In actual practice, 94%. Often women forget, take them incorrectly, or just stop taking oral contraceptives. The drop-out rate is high. Working with designer Martha Davis, and Larry Lambelet at Ortho-McNeil, I recommended that we focus on the 6% difference. While the replaceable ring requires extra steps, we designed the refillable pack to be as simple as possible.

Instructions: During an extensive series of interviews with women about the proper use of birth control pills, we identified numerous stumbling blocks. As a result we recommended re-thinking the instructions – including clear directions on what to do when a pill is missed. The instructions we developed in 1999 are still being used today.

Personal Pak: We also helped conceived the Personal Pak, a line of high-end DialPak containers, separately purchased, designed be extra-discreet, more elegant compacts.

– Ortho’s Tri-Cyclen brand increased 59% with the new DialPak III design.
– In a survey of 120 Personal Pak users, half of the respondents were more likely to take their birth control pills on time as a result of using the re-designed containers.