Title:
Child resistant blister pack holder
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A child resistant blister pack holder is described that includes (a.) a main housing receiving pocket having an open end for insertion and removal of blister pack; (b.) a locking mechanism adapted to lock onto and hold a blister pack in the main housing to prevent removal thereof; and, (c.) a release mechanism. The release mechanism, which is connected to the locking mechanism, has a first position wherein the locking mechanism is locked onto the blister pack, and a second position wherein the locking mechanism is unlocked from the blister pack. The release mechanism is located, at least in part, on an outside area of the main housing to permit manual movement thereof from the first position to the second position. A spring biases the release mechanism to its first position. In some embodiments, the invention is a system which includes the child resistant blister pack holder and a blister pack that contains a lock engaging section in the form of an orifice, recession or protrusion.



Inventors:
Harrold, John E. (Bloomsbury, NJ, US)
Application Number:
10/235062
Publication Date:
03/11/2004
Filing Date:
09/05/2002
Assignee:
Valley Design, Inc.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
206/528
International Classes:
B65D83/04; (IPC1-7): B65D73/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
LUONG, SHIAN TINH NHAN
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
KENNETH P. GLYNN, ESQ. (Flemington, NJ, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A child resistant blister pack holder, which comprises: (a.) a main housing receiving pocket having walls and a back end for envelopment of a blister pack, and having an open end for insertion and removal of said blister pack; (b.) a locking mechanism adapted to lock onto and hold said blister pack in said main housing to prevent removal thereof; (c.) a release mechanism connected to said locking mechanism, said release mechanism having a first position wherein said locking mechanism is locked onto said blister pack, and a second position wherein said locking mechanism is unlocked from said blister pack, said release mechanism being located, at least in part, on an outside area of said main housing to permit manual movement thereof from said first position to said second position.

2. The holder of claim 1 wherein said release mechanism includes a spring that biases said release mechanism to said first position, whereby when said release mechanism is moved to its second position and released, said spring will return said release mechanism to its second position.

3. The holder of claim 1 wherein said locking mechanism is a swivel latch.

4. The holder of claim 2 wherein said locking mechanism is a swivel latch.

5. The holder of claim 1 wherein said main housing has at least two sides, a top, a bottom, a front and a back, and wherein said open front end is said front.

6. The holder of claim 5 wherein said main housing is rectilinear and includes said top, said bottom, said front, said back, and two opposing sides.

7. The holder of claim 6 wherein said locking mechanism is located on at least one of said sides.

8. The holder of claim 2 wherein said locking mechanism includes a push component whereby said push component may be pushed to move said locking mechanism from said first position to said second position.

9. The holder of claim 1 wherein said main housing includes a lift ramp adapted to move a blister pack toward said locking mechanism.

10. The holder of claim 1 wherein said main housing includes a hinged push tab adapted to enable a user to push at least a portion of a blister pack from said main housing when said release mechanism is in said second position.

11. A child resistant blister pack holder system, which comprises: (a.) a main housing receiving pocket having walls and a back end for envelopment of a blister pack, and having an open end for insertion and removal of said blister pack; (b.) a locking mechanism adapted to lock onto and hold a blister pack in said main housing to prevent removal thereof; (c.) a release mechanism connected to said locking mechanism, said release mechanism having a first position wherein said locking mechanism is locked onto said blister pack, and a second position wherein said locking mechanism is unlocked form said blister pack, said release mechanism being located, at least in part, on an outside area of said main housing to permit manual movement thereof from said first position to said second position; and, (d.) a blister pack having a flat card and at least one enclosed medicament, said flat card including a lock engaging section.

12. The system of claim 11 wherein said release mechanism includes a spring that biases said release mechanism to said first position, whereby when said release mechanism is moved to its second position and released, said spring will return said release mechanism to its second position.

13. The system of claim 11 wherein said locking mechanism is a swivel latch.

14. The holder of claim 13 wherein said release mechanism is a button.

15. The holder of claim 14 wherein said button includes a living hinge.

16. The holder of claim 14 wherein there are two buttons, one being located on a first side wall and the other being located on a second side wall.

17. The system of claim 11 wherein said blister pack lock engaging section is selected from recession, a protrusion, an orifice, and a cut out.

18. The holder of claim 12 wherein said locking mechanism includes a push component whereby said push component may be pushed to move said locking mechanism from said first position to said second position.

19. The holder of claim 11 wherein said main housing includes a lift ramp adapted to move a blister pack toward said locking mechanism.

20. The holder of claim 11 wherein said main housing includes a hinged push tab adapted to enable a user to push at least a portion of a blister pack from said main housing when said release mechanism is in said second position.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] The present invention relates to a unique solution to protecting individual blister packs from children. The invention is a holder into which a blister pack is inserted, whereby it is automatically locked into the holder to isolate and encompass it, thereby disabling it from puncture or content (tablet or medication) removal. A user must press a release to unlock the blister pack for removal from the holder.

[0003] 2. Information Disclosure Statement

[0004] The following United States Patents are exemplary of the state of the art for blister packs and child resistant blister packs:

[0005] U.S. Pat. No. 3,888,350 describes a snap lock and squeeze open slide top container that has a small centered catch depending from the inner face of the cover. The edge of the catch forms with the closed end of the cover a slot which accommodates the rear edge of the drawer portion of the container. The profile of the catch is tapered, forming an inclined plane directed to the front end of the container. The cover and drawer are slidably engaged by lateral meshing flanges which are interrupted near the closed end to provide slight clearances between the inside of the cover and the outside of the drawer. These clearances, together with an inverted V-shaped cut centered in the rear skirt of the cover, permit the cover to bow up when the sides are squeezed, releasing the edge of the drawer portion from the slot formed by the catch, to open the drawer. When the drawer is closed, the edge portion rides forward along the inclined plane depending from the cover, engaging the slot with a click, to lock the container closed. To prevent spillage, the opening of the drawer is limited by a pair of small stops depending from the inner face of the cover near each sidewall, which ride in elongated recesses in the lateral walls.

[0006] U.S. Pat. No. 3,942,630 describes a sliding cover safety package including a container having a cover mounted thereon for slidable movement between open and closed positions with respect to the container. The container and cover are provided with locking lugs having a locked position when the cover is closed in which the cover is locked against movement from its closed position with respect to the container, and an unlocked position when the cover is closed in which the cover can slide with respect to the container to its open position. The locking lugs are movable between the locked and unlocked positions by axial movement of the cover with respect to the container. Resilient biasing members is engaged between the container and cover to bias the locking lugs to the locked position such that the cover can slide from its closed position with respect to the container only after axial movement of the cover with respect to the container against the biasing members.

[0007] U.S. Pat. No. 3,993,190 describes a method and apparatus for packaging and dispensing stain removing agents in small, individual capsules. The stain removing agents are preferably in paste form. The individual capsules are readily deformable and are stored in individual troughs in a receiving plate which, in turn, is covered by a covering sheet.

[0008] U.S. Pat. No. 4,159,568 describes a container for capsules and the like having a cutter associated with the container for cutting the capsules. Hinged upper and lower portions of the container have cutting members secured thereto. Closure of the container portions effects cutting of a capsule inserted between the cutting members. In the preferred embodiments, the cutting members comprise a trough-shaped notch in the front wall of one of the container portions and a blade secured to the front wall of the other of the container portions, the blade and notch being superposed. An internal compartment is provided to receive a cut portion of a capsule.

[0009] U.S. Pat. No. 4,284,204 describes a two-part package that includes a sleeve for receiving a try. One surface of the sleeve has openings formed therein for receiving dimpled detents formed in the tray. As the tray is fully positioned in the sleeve, the detents engage the openings and retain the tray thereby inhibiting unwanted opening of the package and release of contents. Upon exertion of sufficient manual force on the sides of the sleeve, detent action is overcome and the package is opened as desired.

[0010] U.S. Pat. No. 4,485,915 describes a child resistant package having an outer container and an inner product supporting tray; the inner tray is adapted to be inserted into the container to a locked position and removed therefrom by disengaging a locking means and withdrawing the tray; the inner tray is disengaged from the container by pressing inwardly a pair of flexible tabs formed at the back end of the side walls of the tray; in a preferred embodiment a blister pack containing tablets is disposed on the product tray and the tray bottom is provided with holes through which the tablets in the blister pack may be pushed.

[0011] U.S. Pat. No. 4,561,544 describes a child resistant container for pills and the like that has a try which slidably engages a lid and is locked in a fully closed position as a spring arm on the tray urges a locking detent on the arm into engagement with a locking aperture located in an adjacent side wall of the lid. Manual depression of the detent releases the tray for opening as an exposed front wall thereof is pulled.

[0012] U.S. Pat. No. 4,844,284 describes a child resistant package that includes a tray with a compartment therein for receiving articles to be packaged, and a cover member slideably received on the tray and movable relative to the tray between opened and closed positions. The cover member is a flexible member having a top wall and peripheral sidewalls. The peripheral sidewalls of the cover member overlie peripheral sidewalls of the tray and latching members on the sidewalls of the cover member and tray cooperate to retain the cover member in a closed position relative to the tray. The latching members are released by applying an inward pressure to the top wall of the cover member to thereby bias the sidewalls of the cover member outwardly relative to the sidewalls of the tray. An abutment member on the tray prevents such inward deflection of the top wall of the cover member in the event that a child bites down on the package on the forward region thereof. Preferably, a peripheral skirt is provided on the tray for overlying lower marginal surfaces of the peripheral walls of the cover member, to thereby prevent a child from wedging his or her teeth between the peripheral walls of the cover member and tray, and thereafter prying the cover member off the tray.

[0013] U.S. Pat. No. 5,019,125 describes a solid medicament dispensing device having a cover and tray to provide a container for a cartridge for the solid medicament. The cover has hinged panel members and the tray an opening in the floor. When the hinged panel members are moved against the cartridge, it forces the medicament out of the cartridge and through the tray opening. The dispensing device is particularly suited for dispensing large dosages of capsules.

[0014] U.S. Pat. No. 5,082,137 describes a child resistant locking slide box that is opened by deforming a locking tab on the slide box drawer that positively engages the surrounding cover. There are tracks on the inside surfaces of the cover sidewalls that positively engage and slide along tracks positioned on the outside surfaces of the drawer sidewalls. The engagement of the cover and draw tracks allow only for the respective lateral movement of the cover across the drawer. The lateral movement of the cover allowed by the tracks is restricted in one direction by the drawer locking tab.

[0015] The drawer locking tab has a step that overlaps the cover surface. To open the slide box the cover tab must first be deformed backward, removing the step from the above cover, and then downward so that the whole locking tab is beneath the cover. Once the draw tab is below the cover, the drawer can be pushed past the cover, exposing the contents of the drawer.

[0016] U.S. Pat. No. 5,109,984 describes reusable, plastic medication dispensing containers for dispensing medication from a blister pack. The container includes a top, bottom, and retaining frame the are molded from a one-piece plastic and hingeably connected one to the other.

[0017] Notwithstanding the prior art, the present invention is neither taught nor rendered obvious thereby.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0018] A child resistant blister pack holder is described that includes: (a.) a main housing receiving pocket having an open end for insertion and removal of a blister pack; (b.) a locking mechanism adapted to lock onto and hold the blister pack in the main housing to prevent removal thereof; and, (c.) a release mechanism. The release mechanism, which is connected to the locking mechanism, has a first position wherein the locking mechanism is locked onto the blister pack, and a second position wherein the locking mechanism is unlocked from the blister pack. The release mechanism is located, at least in part, on an outside area of the main housing to permit manual movement thereof from the first position to the second position, e.g., by pressing or sliding. A spring biases the release mechanism to its first position whereby when the release mechanism is moved to its second position and subsequently released, the spring will return the release mechanism to its second position. In some embodiments, the invention is a system which includes the child resistant blister pack holder and a blister pack that contains a lock engaging section in the form of an orifice, recession or protrusion.

[0019] The locking mechanism of the holder may be a swivel latch, or a spring-loaded catch, or equivalent locking means. In some preferred embodiments, the holder may have a curvilinear shape, or may be a combination of straight and curved surfaces, such as a rigid, slide in glasses case. In other preferred embodiments, the main housing is rectilinear, like a photo slide box. For example, main housing may have at least a top, a bottom, a front, and a back, and wherein the front is the open end. In most preferred embodiments, the main housing is rectilinear and includes a top, a bottom, a front, a back, and two opposing sides, with the front being the open end for insertion and removal of the blister pack.

[0020] The locking mechanism is generally located within the main housing, e.g. it may be located on one of its sides. The locking mechanism may be connected to a release mechanism which is located at least partially on the outside of the main housing for manual operation. For example, the release mechanism may include a push component whereby the push component may be pushed to move the locking mechanism from the first position to the second position. A spring would be preferred to maintain the release mechanism at its first position. In some embodiments, the main housing includes a lift ramp adapted to move a blister pack toward the locking mechanism. The blister pack itself may be any known blister pack with single or multiple dosage, but adapted to engage with the locking mechanism. A flat card is preferred with a lock engaging section. The blister pack lock engaging section may be selected from recession, a protrusion, an orifice, and a cut out.

[0021] The blister pack is inserted into the holder and the locking mechanism will automatically attach to the engaging section of the blister pack, i.e. will latch to the cut out (orifice), protrusion or depression on the blister pack. In some embodiments, the main housing includes a lift ramp adapted to move a blister pack toward the locking mechanism, wherein the ramp raises (or lowers) the blister pack toward the latch for tight and more secure fitting of the locking mechanism with the engagement area of the blister pack.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0022] The present invention should be more fully understood when the specification herein is taken in conjunction with the drawings appended hereto wherein:

[0023] FIG. 1 shows a top view of a present invention child resistant blister pack holder,

[0024] FIG. 2 illustrates a side view of the present invention device shown in FIG. 1;

[0025] FIG. 3 shows a cut front view and

[0026] FIG. 4 illustrates a rear view of the present invention holder shown in FIGS. 1 and 2;

[0027] FIG. 5 shows a partial, cut front view and

[0028] FIG. 6 shows a full cut front view of the same device shown above;

[0029] FIG. 7 shows a side cut view of the device and blister pack; and,

[0030] FIG. 8 and FIG. 9 show a top view and a side cut view, respectively, of the above device in a dissembled form without blister pack.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PRESENT INVENTION

[0031] Referring to FIGS. 1 through 4, collectively, wherein identical parts are individually numbered, there is shown a present invention child resistant blister pack holder 1, which includes a top 3, an open front end 5 (with a partial wall 71 shown in FIG. 3), a back 7, sides 9 and 11 and a bottom 19. This structure makes up the main housing, and it is essentially a sleeve for insertion and locking of a blister pack 51 (FIG. 3). There are side buttons 13 and 15 that are pushed inward to cause movement of swivel locks (e.g. swivel lock 31) to release an otherwise locked-in blister pack 51. The buttons 13 and 15 are located on living hinge tabs, such as tab 21 (FIG. 2). Optional push lever 17 may be used to push blister pack 51, with medicine 53, out of holder 1 for use. Alternatively, positioning of holder 1 with open front 5 facing downward will permit blister pack 51 to drop out when the buttons 13 and 15 are pushed, without the need for use of push lever 17.

[0032] The details of the functioning of buttons 13 and 15 are shown in FIGS. 5 and 6. These Figures show a front cut partial view and front cut view of holder 1 above, respectively. Identical parts common to all Figures herein are identically numbered.

[0033] FIG. 5 shows a partial, cut, blown up view of side button 15. Although holder 1 has two, opposite side buttons 13 and 15, one button would suffice and be within the scope of the present invention. However, two buttons offer balance, extra safety, and prevent cocking or rotation of the blister pack 51.

[0034] In these FIGS. 5 and 6, button 15 is located on living hinge push tab 21. Tab 21 includes a tapered lift extension 23 that rides under, lifts up one end of and causes unlocking rotation of swivel lock 31 by pushing up bottom 33. This causes the top of swivel lock 31 to swing down and remove from orifice 53 of blister pack 51 to release blister pack 51 for removal.

[0035] Loading of a blister pack into a present invention device is uniquely, seamlessly straight forward. The blister pack 51 is a flat card with at least one enclosed medication, and includes a lock engaging section, such as a ridge, an indent, a cut-out, notch, or an orifice, in this case, orifice 53 and orifice 57 (FIG. 6). The blister pack 51 is inserted into open front 5, automatically rides on guides 63, 65, and 67, with opposing blister pack lifts, such as lifts 59 and 61 and medicine enclosure 54. The blister pack is also guided by down ramp 69 so that when the blister pack 51 is inserted, the swivel locks 31 and 43 are first pushed down and when orifices 53 and 57 align therewith, these swivel locks automatically pop-up (due to their spring movement to return to their rest position) and lock into the when orifices 53 and 57. Post 37 is a rest post for swivel lock 31 and post 35 is a bumper post for swivel lock 31. These are not essential, but reduce excessive movement, extend the useful life of the swivel locks, and reduce misalignment of the swivel locks and the blister pack engagement sections.

[0036] FIG. 7 shows the side cut view of holder 1 and blister pack 51 with all parts identically numbered as above. This side cut view shows the relative position of the blister pack 51 to the top 3, bottom 19, open front 5, and guides, such as guide 75. Other elements are removed from this Figure to provide clarity of the intended presentation.

[0037] FIGS. 8 and 9 show one way present invention holders may be made. These Figures show a top view and a side cut view of holder 1 described above, but in an unassembled position without a blister pack. Referring to both Figures, all of the parts are numbered as of above. The entire structure is unistructurally molded with a hinge 99 connecting the top and bottom parts. FIG. 8 illustrates clearly the holding relationships of bumper posts 35 and 45 to swivel locks 31 and 43, and FIG. 9 shows the side view of bumper post 45 and swivel lock 43. Also shown in FIG. 9 is the vertical swivel lock 43 movement, which rotates like the arrow shown above it when pushed in by an inserted blister pack, and again when button 13 is pushed in for release of blister card.

[0038] Assemblage of holder 1 of FIGS. 8 and 9 is achieved by folding over and locking the catches 41, 81, 83, and 87 of top 3 with the catches 39, 91, 93, and 97 of bottom 19. These permanently interlock to create the sleeve main housing. (FIG. 5 illustrates the interlocking of catches 39 and 41.)

[0039] Obviously, numerous modifications and variations of the present invention are possible in light of the above teachings. It is therefore understood that within the scope of the appended claims, the invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described herein.