Keeping track of seniors with Alzheimer’s
The e-mail alert shouted its message: “Missing Person with Alzheimer’s. PLEASE HELP.” It was sent to Alzheimer’s Assn. chapters and to law enforcement officials within hours after an Orange County woman disappeared while on a short trip to visit a friend.
That story has a happy ending, but many confused seniors who become lost are never found again. The Alzheimer’s Assn. estimates that 60% of individuals with Alzheimer’s will wander at least once during the progression of the disease. Up to 70% of these individuals wander more than once, and up to several times. One study reported that nearly half of those not found within 24 hours die – usually from dehydration, exposure or injury.