It’s not easy being a family caregiver: enormous responsibility, constant worry, continual vigilance. When the person you’re caring for is prone to wander off and possibly become lost, the task becomes even more overwhelming. Such is the case with the challenge of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias.
Technology Provides a Safety Net
If a person with dementia wanders outdoors and is lost for more than 24 hours, their chance of survival drops to 50% due to the risk of exposure. As a result, a lost person with Alzheimer’s or a dementia-related illness represents a critical medical emergency. Thanks to the development and expansion of technology designed to provide a safety net for the most vulnerable citizens in our community, Project Lifesaver provides a critical increase in search and rescue capability to search for lost loved ones while simultaneously decreasing the stress on caregivers and family.
How it Works
Each Project Lifesaver client is provided an electronic bracelet that emits a unique radio signal 24 hours a day. This bracelet is encoded and relates not only the name and distinctive identifying features of the bearer, but also any characteristics that can aid a search team in locating and securing the trust of that individual in as short of timeframe as possible.
Search and Rescue
With the assistance of Project Lifesaver, when a client wanders anywhere in Whatcom County, a call to 911 by the caregiver will trigger a rapid response by the Search and Rescue team within the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Department who in turn mobilize additional volunteers organized by Dementia Support Northwest. A search to locate that client’s unique radio signal is started as soon as possible.
If you know someone who might benefit from Project Lifesaver or if you would like to donate to this beneficial program, please contact Dementia Support Northwest at (360) 671-3316, or email@example.com or see our web at www.dementiasupportnw.org. Alternatively, donations can be mailed to:
Dementia Support Northwest
2950 Newmarket Street #210
Bellingham, WA 98226