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Tablet package

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20120292225 patent thumbnailZoom

Tablet package


A package includes a case and a card coupled to the case. The card is configured to carry a collection of oral tablets or the like that can be released from the card and then ingested by a consumer

Browse recent Berry Plastics Corporation patents - Evansville, IN, US
Inventors: Ryan P. Davidson, Jordan French, Patrick Cannon, Jeffrey C. Minnette
USPTO Applicaton #: #20120292225 - Class: 206531 (USPTO) - 11/22/12 - Class 206 
Special Receptacle Or Package > For Ampule, Capsule, Pellet, Or Granule >Structure For "press-out" Of Content Unit

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The Patent Description & Claims data below is from USPTO Patent Application 20120292225, Tablet package.

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PRIORITY

This application claims priority under 35 U.S.C. §119(e) to U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 61,487,634, filed May 18, 2012, which is expressly incorporated by reference herein.

BACKGROUND

The present disclosure relates to packaging for prescription drugs, and particularly to packaging for blister cards. More particularly, the present disclosure relates to containers for storing blister cards.

SUMMARY

A package in accordance with the present disclosure includes a case and a card coupled to the case. In illustrative embodiments, the card is a blister card configured to carry a collection of oral tablets or the like.

In illustrative embodiments, the case includes a tray including a floor, a side wall extending around the floor, and card-elevation means for elevating the card above the floor to form a tablet-receiving chamber bounded by the floor, the side wall, and an underside of the card. The case further includes a card retainer arranged to engage the card to retain the card on the card-elevation means in the elevated position.

In a first embodiment of the case, the tray is a round dish sized to receive a round blister card. The card-elevation means of the tray includes a center card support and a series of outer card supports. The center card support is an upstanding post coupled to the center of the round floor and arranged to extend upwardly toward a top tray aperture defined by the side wall and opening into a tray chamber bounded by the side wall and the floor. Each outer card support is an upstanding wall having a bottom edge coupled to the floor and an outer end edge coupled to the side wall and arranged to extend radially inwardly toward the center card support. Four outer card supports are provided in an illustrative embodiment and positioned to lie in uniformly and circumferentially spaced-apart relation to one another along a circular inner surface of the side wall. A top plate of the center card support and a top edge of each of the radially inwardly extending outer card supports cooperate to form a level platform on which the round blister card is retained to form the tablet-receiving chamber below the round blister card.

The round blister card is retained on the level platform established by the card-elevation means using a card retainer comprising a series of card-retainer segments included in the case and coupled to a circular inner surface of the side wall of the tray. In illustrative embodiments, each of the card-retainer segments is arc-shaped and arranged to lie on an upper portion of the side wall of the tray above the top edges of the outer card supports and below the top edge of the side wall.

In illustrative embodiments, the case in accordance with the first embodiment also includes a removable lid that is adapted to be coupled to the round tray to cover the blister card retained in the round tray. The round blister card is formed to include a tablet-discharge outlet opening into the tablet-receiving chamber formed below the round blister card. In use, a consumer removes the lid from the tray to expose the round blister card. Then the consumer pushes downwardly on the elevated blister card to cause an oral tablet stored in a pocket formed in the blister card to be ejected from the pocket and fall into the underlying tablet-receiving chamber. Finally, the consumer tilts the tray at an angle to cause the loose oral tablet in the tablet-receiving chamber to be discharged from the case through the tablet-discharge outlet formed in the blister card.

In a second embodiment of the case, the tray is a rectangular dish sized to receive a rectangular blister card. The card-elevation means of the tray includes an outer card support arranged to extend around an inner surface of the rectangular side wall of the tray. In illustrative embodiments, the outer card support includes a raised ledge coupled to each of the four segments of the rectangular side wall of the tray. The raised ledges of the outer card support cooperate to form a level platform on which the rectangular blister card is retained to form the tablet-receiving chamber below the rectangular blister card.

In illustrative embodiments, the rectangular blister card is retained on the level platform established by the card-elevation means using a card retainer that is coupled to a rectangular frame that is separate from the tray but is mounted on the tray. The rectangular frame is coupled, for example, by means of a snap connection, to an upper portion of the rectangular side wall to trap a peripheral portion of the rectangular blister card between the raised ledges of the card-elevation means and an underside of the card retainer coupled to the rectangular frame.

In illustrative embodiments, the case in accordance with the second embodiment also includes a discharge spout and a removable lid for the discharge spout. The discharge spout is aligned with a discharge aperture formed in the side wall of the rectangular tray and arranged to open into the tablet-receiving chamber to provide means for discharging tablets stored in the tablet-receiving chamber from the tray after removal of the lid from the discharge spout. In use, a consumer pushes downwardly on the elevated blister card to cause an oral tablet stored in a pocket formed in the blister card to be ejected from the pocket and fall into the tablet-receiving chamber. Then the consumer removes the lid from the discharged spout and tilts the tray at an angle to cause the loose oral tablet in the tablet-receiving chamber to be discharged from the case through a tablet-transport passageway formed in the discharge spout.

Additional features of the present disclosure will become apparent to those skilled in the art upon consideration of illustrative embodiments exemplifying the best mode of carrying out the disclosure as presently perceived.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The detailed description particularly refers to the accompanying figures in which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a case in accordance with a first embodiment of the present disclosure showing a removable lid mounted on an underlying tray;

FIG. 2 is an exploded perspective assembly view of components included in the case of FIG. 1 showing a removable lid, a round blister card formed to include four pie-shaped color-coded tablet carrier sections and a tablet-discharge outlet located between two neighboring tablet carrier sections, and a round tray including a floor, a side wall surrounding the floor, and a card elevator for elevating the blister card above the floor to form a tablet-receiving chamber bounded by the floor, the side wall, and the underside of the blister card, and showing the center card support and the four radially extending outer card supports that are included in the card elevator of the tray and cooperate to form a level platform supporting the blister card in the elevated position above the floor of the tray;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged view of the tray and blister card of FIG. 2 after the blister card has been placed on the level platform established by the underlying center card support and four outer card supports to cause the tablet-discharge outlet formed in the blister card to open into the table-receiving chamber formed under the blister card and showing two of the four arc-shaped card-retainer segments that cooperate to form a card retainer that is also included in the case and coupled to an inner surface of the curved side wall of the tray to engage a top side of the blister card and retain the blister card in a stationary position on the level platform established by the center card support and the outer card supports;

FIG. 3A is a view of an alternative information card in an elevated position on the tray of FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a sectional view taken along line 4-4 of FIG. 3 showing the center card support and two of the four radially inwardly extending outer card supports and showing the tablet-receiving chamber bounded by the floor, the side wall, and the underside of the blister card and configured to receive any loose oral tablets that are discharged from the overlying blister card by a consumer seeking to free such a tablet from the blister card for consumption;

FIG. 5 is an enlarged bottom view of the package of FIG. 1;

FIG. 6 is an enlarged front elevation view of the package of FIG. 1;

FIG. 7 is an enlarged side elevation view of the package of FIG. 1;

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of a case in accordance with a second embodiment of the present disclosure showing a cylinder-shaped removable lid mounted on a discharge spout coupled to a rectangular tray underlying and supporting a rectangular blister card and to a rectangular frame overlying the rectangular tray and carrying a card retainer that cooperates with the tray to trap the blister card in a stationary position therebetween;

FIG. 9 is an exploded perspective assembly view of components included in the case of FIG. 8 showing a rectangular frame carrying a card retainer along an inner edge thereof, a rectangular blister card, a rectangular tray including a floor, a side wall surrounding the floor, and a card elevator for elevating the blister card above the floor to form a tablet-receiving chamber bounded by the floor, the side wall, and the underside of the blister card, a discharge spout comprising a top spout section coupled to a right end of the rectangular frame and a companion bottom spout section coupled to a right end of the rectangular tray, and a cylinder-shaped removable lid, and showing the raised ledges arranged to lie around the perimeter of the floor that are included in the card elevator of the tray and cooperate to form a level platform supporting the blister card in the elevated position above the floor of the tray;

FIG. 10 is a perspective view of a bottom plate of FIG. 9 comprising the tray and the bottom spout section of the discharge spout;

FIG. 11 is a perspective view of the blister card of FIG. 9;

FIG. 12 is a perspective view of a top plate of FIG. 9 comprising the rectangular frame and the top spout section of the discharge spout;

FIG. 13 is an exploded perspective assembly view showing that the blister card has been placed on the level platform established by the raised ledges of the card elevator to mate the blister card and the tray to form the tablet-receiving chamber between the floor of the tray and the underside of the blister card and showing that the rectangular frame is about to be mated with the tray to trap the blister card between the card retainer coupled to the frame and the tray;

FIG. 14 is an enlarged sectional view of the case taken along line 14-14 of FIG. 8;

FIG. 15 is an enlarged sectional view of the case taken along line 15-15 of FIG. 8; and

FIG. 16 is a perspective view of a portion of the case of FIG. 8 showing the tablet-receiving chamber bounded by the tray floor, the tray side wall, and the underside of the blister card and showing a portion of the card retainer that is coupled to an inner edge of the rectangular frame and arranged to mate with a peripheral portion of the top side of the blister card to retain the blister card in the elevated position on the raised ledges included in the card elevator of the tray.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

A package 10 in accordance with a first embodiment of the disclosure is shown in FIGS. 1-7. A package 110 shown in FIG. 3A is similar to package 10 but includes an information card rather than a blister card. A package 210 in accordance with a second embodiment of the disclosure is shown in FIGS. 8-16. In each embodiment, a card is retained in an elevated position above a tray floor to form a space between the card and the tray floor. In illustrative embodiments, the card is a blister card configured to store several oral tablets and the space under the blister card is a tablet-receiving chamber sized to receive downwardly falling oral tablets that have been released from a tablet-storage pocket formed in the blister card in response to a downward pushing force applied by a consumer to the pocket of the blister card. In each embodiment, the case is formed to include means for discharging loose oral tablets from the tablet-receiving chamber for consumption by the consumer.

Package 10 includes a case 12 and a blister (tablet-carrier) card 14 inside case 12 as suggested in FIGS. 1 and 2. Case 12 includes a tray 16 and a removable lid 18 as shown, for example, in FIGS. 1 and 2. Tray 16 includes a card elevator 20 including, for example, a center card support 200 and four outer card supports 201-204 as suggested in FIGS. 2 and 5. Card elevator 20 is configured to provide a level platform to support blister card 14 in an elevated position in tray 16 to form a tablet-receiving chamber 22 underneath blister card 14 as suggested in FIGS. 2-4.

Case 12 also includes a card retainer 24 including, for example, four arc-shaped card-retainer segments 241-244 coupled to tray 16 as suggested in FIGS. 2-4. Card retainer 24 is coupled to tray 16 and arranged to engage a top side of blister card 14 as suggested in FIGS. 3 and 4 while blister card 14 is at rest on center card support 200 and outer card supports 201-204 so that blister card 14 is trapped between card elevator 20 and card retainer 24 and thus retained on card elevator 20 in the elevated position.

Tray 16 includes a floor 26 and a side wall 28 coupled to a perimeter edge of floor 26 as shown, for example, in FIG. 2. Side wall 28 cooperates with floor 26 to form a tray chamber 27 containing card elevator 20 and card retainer 24 as suggested in FIGS. 2-4. Tray 16 has a round floor 26 and a curved side wall 28 in an illustrative embodiment as suggested in FIG. 2. Tray 16 is nestable for efficient shipping to and storage at a pharmacy before a blister card 14 is inserted into tray 16.

Blister card 14 is round as suggested in FIG. 2 and sized to lie in tray chamber 27 of tray 16 on the level platform established by center card support 200 and outer card supports 201-204 as suggested in FIGS. 2-4. In an illustrative embodiment, blister card 14 includes a transparent shell 30 made of any suitable material and formed to include a series of tablet-receiving pockets 32. Blister card 14 also includes a laminate backing layer 34 coupled to shell 30 to retain an oral tablet 36 in each of the pockets 32 until needed by a consumer. In an illustrative embodiment, laminate backing layer 34 is made of an aluminum foil. Tablets 36 can be removed from companion pockets 32 in the usual way by pushing downwardly on a pocket 32 of shell 30 to push a tablet 36 through the frangible laminate backing layer 34 to punch a tablet-ejector opening in laminate backing layer 34 and release a tablet 36 from blister card 14.

In an illustrative embodiment, blister card 14 includes four pie-shaped color-coded sections 14A, 14B, 14C, and 14D as shown, for example, in FIG. 3. Each of those sections represents one week and normally contains seven tablet-receiving pockets 32 to provide a tablet 36 for each day in that week. (However, section 14A includes nine pockets 32 to provide a total of thirty pockets 32 in blister card 14.)

A relatively narrow fifth pie-shaped section 14E is provided between color-coded sections 14A and 14D in an illustrative embodiment as suggested in FIG. 3. Section 14E is formed to include a half-round tablet-discharge outlet 145 as suggested in FIGS. 2 and 3. Tablet-discharge outlet 145 is configured to open into tablet-receiving chamber 22 provided between blister card 14 and tray floor 26 to provide means for discharging loose oral tablets 36 from tablet-receiving chamber 22 for consumption by a consumer.

In case 12, tray 16 is a round dish sized to receive a round blister card 14. Card elevator 20 of tray 16 includes a center card support 200 and a series of outer card supports 201-204. Center card support 200 is an upstanding post coupled to the center of the round floor 26 and arranged to extend upwardly toward a top tray aperture 29 defined by side wall 28 and opening into a tray chamber 27 bounded by side wall 28 and floor 26. Each outer card support 201-204 is an upstanding wall having a bottom edge coupled to floor 26 and an outer end edge coupled to side wall 28 and arranged to extend radially inwardly toward center card support 200 as suggested in FIG. 2. Four outer card supports 201-204 are provided in an illustrative embodiment and positioned to lie in uniformly and circumferentially spaced-apart relation to one another along a circular inner surface of side wall 28 of tray 16 as suggested in FIG. 2. A top plate of center card support 200 and a top edge of each of the radially inwardly extending outer card supports 201-204 cooperate to form a level platform on which the round blister card 14 is retained to form the tablet-receiving chamber 22 below the round blister card 14.

Blister card 14 is retained on the level platform established by card elevator 20 using a series of card-retainer segments 241-244 included in case 12 and coupled to a circular inner surface of side wall 28. In illustrative embodiments, each of card-retainer segments 241-244 is arc-shaped and arranged to lie in a stationary position on an upper portion of the side wall 28 of tray 16 above the top edges of the outer card supports 201-204 and below the top edge of the side wall 28.

In illustrative embodiments, case 12 also includes a removable lid 18 that is adapted to be coupled to the round tray 16 to cover blister card 14 retained in round tray 16. Blister card 14 is formed to include a tablet-discharge outlet 145 opening into the tablet-receiving chamber 22 formed below the round blister card 14. In use, a consumer removes lid 18 from tray 16 to expose blister card 14. Then the consumer pushes downwardly on the elevated blister card 14 to cause an oral tablet 36 stored in a pocket 32 formed in blister card 14 to fall into the underlying tablet-receiving chamber 22. Finally, the consumer tilts tray 16 at an angle to cause the loose oral tablet 36 in tablet-receiving chamber 22 to be discharged from case 12 through the tablet-discharge outlet 145 formed in blister card 14. The tablet-discharge outlet 145 is a dispensing slot that provides controlled dosing.

A perimeter edge of tablet-carrier card 14 is arranged to lie in closely confronting relation to side wall 28 of case 12 as suggested in FIG. 3. Portions of the perimeter edge of tablet-carrier card 14 and side wall 28 cooperate to form a tablet-discharge outlet 145 configured to open into tablet-receiving chamber 22 provided between tablet-carrier card 14 and floor 26 to provide chamber-outlet means for discharging loose oral tablets 36 from tablet-receiving chamber 22 for oral consumption by a consumer. The perimeter edge of tablet-carrier card 14 includes a concave potion arranged to face outwardly toward an opposing portion of side wall 28 to define the tablet-discharge outlet 145 therebetween as suggested in FIGS. 2 and 3.

An exploded perspective assembly view of components included in case 12 is provided in FIG. 2 and shows a removable lid 18, a round blister card 14 formed to include four pie-shaped color-coded tablet carrier sections 14A-14D and a tablet-discharge outlet 145 located between two neighboring tablet carrier sections 14A-14D, and a round tray 16 including a floor 26, a side wall 28 surrounding floor 26, and a card elevator 20 for elevating blister card 14 above floor 26 to form a tablet-receiving chamber 22 bounded by floor 26, side wall 28, and the underside of blister card 14. Also shown is center card support 200 and the four radially extending outer card supports 201-204 that are included in card elevator 20 of tray 16 and cooperate to form a level platform supporting blister card 14 in the elevated position above floor 26 of tray 16.

An enlarged view of tray 16 and blister card 14 is provided in FIG. 3 to show placement of blister card 14 on the level platform established by underlying center card support 200 and four outer card supports 201-204 to cause tablet-discharge outlet 145 formed in blister card 14 to open into table-receiving chamber 22 formed under blister card 14. Two of the four arc-shaped card-retainer segments 241-242 that cooperate to form a card retainer 20 that is also included in case 12 and coupled to an inner surface of curved side wall 28 of the tray are shown to engage a top side of blister card 14 and retain blister card 14 in a stationary position on the level platform established by center card support 200 and outer card supports 201-204.

Tablet-receiving chamber 22 is bounded by the floor, the side wall, and the underside of the blister card 14. Tablet-receiving chamber 22 is configured to receive any loose tablets 36 that are discharged from the overlying blister card 14 by a consumer seeking to free such a tablet 36 from the blister card 14 for consumption.

Package 10 includes a case 12 that is formed to provide a tablet-receiving chamber 22 for receiving all oral tablets 36 discharged from a blister card 14 retained in case 12. Blister card 14 is supported and retained in an elevated position in case 12 to provide tablet-receiving chamber 22. By supporting blister card 14 in a stationary elevated position, it is relatively easy for a consumer to expel an oral tablet 36 from blister card 14 while blister card 14 remains in case 12 without directly holding blister pack 14.

Case 12 is suitable for use in package 110 along with information card 13 instead of blister card 14 as suggested in FIG. 3A. Thus, case 12 is also adapted for use with a collection of loose oral tablets 36 stored under information card 13. These loose oral tablets 36 may be dispensed from tablet-receiving chamber 22 via a tablet-discharge outlet 145 formed in information card 13.



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stats Patent Info
Application #
US 20120292225 A1
Publish Date
11/22/2012
Document #
13475066
File Date
05/18/2012
USPTO Class
206531
Other USPTO Classes
International Class
65D83/04
Drawings
10



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