Thinking about a locating device?

 

    • There are benefits and drawbacks to locating devices. Some people may consider the use of a device improves personal freedom and safety while giving care partners peace of mind. Others may feel this is an invasion of privacy. To learn more about technology that can help people living with dementia, download our Information on Locating Devices document.

 

    • If you are interested in what locating devices are available, the Aging and Innovation Research Program, in collaboration with the Alzheimer Society of Ontario and AGE-WELL NCE, has compiled a list of locator devices and technologies. This resource is intended to provide information regarding locator devices, which may be used to reduce the risks associated with missing incidents.
    • It is important that people who are recently diagnosed with dementia have a discussion as early as possible with the people who are important in their lives. An open discussion with all concerned will help with the decision making. Support is available from your local Alzheimer Society.
    • You will also want to create a safety plan, which may include the use of locating devices and enrolling with a program such as MedicAlert Safely Home® or a vulnerable persons’ registry supported by your local police services or the OPP.

Consider the Ethics

Here’s some questions to help you consider whether a locating device is right for the person you know living with dementia:

  • During their life, what value have they placed on their freedom and versus their safety and security?
  • How do these values influence the decision to use a locating device?
  • At what point would it be agreeable to start using a locating device?

Weigh Your Options

To determine what type of device best serves your needs you’ll need to consider a few things, for example:

  • Where will it likely be used (in a private residence, a care facility, indoors, outdoors or in multiple locations)?
  • Which devices are most appropriate for these settings? How much freedom of movement will the device allow?
  • Who will be doing the monitoring or locating: family? caregiver? police? outside organization?

Learn more about “Interacting with a person with dementia who may be lost” in one of our four 15 minute Online Learning modules

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