One of the most widespread and potentially dangerous behaviors for persons with AlzheimerÛªs or other forms of dementia is the tendency to wander. As many as 60% of Americans affected by AlzheimerÛªs wander at some point, and are often unable to return safely without assistance. Nearly 70% of individuals that wander will do so repeatedly, and of those not found within 24 hours, up to half suffer serious injury or death.
The Alzheimer’s Association is teaming with location-based technology vendor Omnilink to offer Comfort Zone, a web-based application that tracks and relays the position of Alzheimer’s patients to prevent them from straying from familiar territory, unable to remember the way back.
With these technologies, caregivers can help ensure that persons with AlzheimerÛªs or other forms of dementia are easily located if they wander.
Comfort Zone includes GPS tracking technology and a cellular link to a monitoring center. Caregivers can follow Alzheimer’s patients online through a secure web portal and receive automatic email or text alerts if the patient strays from a predefined area. They also can access electronic medical records on the patients through the MedicAlert Foundation.
Service packages start at $42.99 per month, and there’s a $45 activation fee.
While this sounds like a commercial for Comfort Zone, I certainly think that it is worth checking out nonetheless. There have been increasing news reports of wandering incidents with often fatal consequences. Technology like this can help. Great name too don’t you think? More here.