People with dementia in the UK are to be offered GPS trackers
It has been in the news lately about the vulnerabilities and difficulties faced by our elderly community and individuals suffering from dementia. This is a growing concern in the modern world as families are shrinking and taking care of our elderly is getting difficult. There are several socio-economic reasons behind this trend but we can’t ignore the fact that issues like these do have new-age solutions with the help of technology.
In North America and Europe, dementia villages are being built that consider the mental well-being of those suffering from dementia. These living spaces are designed to be nurturing, easy to traverse, and don’t pose the risks of public spaces that might confuse people with dementia.
Consecutively, another important step towards making the lives of caregivers and dementia patients easier is GPS trackers. Let’s look at how a GPS tracker helps in the daily lives of dementia patients and how it can improve their social life without hindering reduced mobility and interaction with others.
GPS trackers for dementia patients, how does it work?
Before we start focusing on the specifics, let’s take a look at what personal trackers are and how they work. In short, they receive signals from GPS satellites and measure location coordinates which can be accessed through a web portal or an app. Of course, most GPS trackers come with a whole array of additional functions and features but this is the basic structure of it.
While assisting dementia patients, GPS trackers work in multiple ways to ensure ease of use and compatibility.
The Geo-Fencing feature is often the most used in that regard. It allows you to define a virtual boundary around your property and every time the personal tracker of those who have dementia leaves that premise, you will receive an instant notification.
One of the most concerning issues for caregivers while looking after people with dementia is their mobility. Since there is a high risk of them getting lost and not being able to find their way back, dementia patients are often bound to homes and are even locked in. However, studies have suggested that social interaction and outdoor time can reduce memory loss and slow down the spread of brain damage. Carrying a personal tracker all the time allows them to move about and still be within reach of the caregivers in case of emergencies.
Finding the way back or figuring out their location if they wander off is another concern when it comes to dementia patients. If they are moving about, the memory loss can cause confusion and they might not recognise the way back and end up stranded on the street. Placing a personal tracker helps the family or caregivers to find them in such situations quickly and bring them back without incidents.
Modern-day GPS trackers like that of PAJ also come with a dedicated SOS button that they can use in case of emergencies. It sends alerts to first responders like the police or hospital and also notifies the primary contacts. This way, even if they are not being actively monitored, they can still get necessary medical attention when it is needed.