LoJack for People? Now Alzheimer's Patients to be Tracked, Too

Sunday, April 05, 2009 by: David Gutierrez, staff writer
Tags: LoJack, health news, Natural News

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(NaturalNews) LoJack Corp., known for its stolen vehicle tracking and recovery systems, has developed an analogous system to track patients with Alzheimer's disease or other conditions that might lead them to become easily lost.

The company is unveiling a new product, LoJack SafetyNet, to help police and caregivers keep track of patients with diseases such as Alzheimer's autism, Down syndrome or dementia. According to a company press release, wandering is the single most life-threatening symptom of Alzheimer's disease. Approximately 59 percent of Alzheimer's patients wander at some point in the course of the disease, and 45 percent of wandering Alzheimer's patients die if not found within 24 hours.

LoJack SafetyNet consists of a Personal Locator Beacon wristband that gives off a radio signal capable of being detected even inside buildings, densely wooded forests or in the middle of large bodies of water. The signal can be detected by search-and-rescue teams with appropriate equipment at a range of one mile from the ground or five to seven miles from a helicopter.

SafetyNet also includes a personal information database, accessible to law enforcement by phone or email 24 hours a day. The database includes a recent photo and personal information to help search teams figure out where a patient is most likely to have wandered to.

The program also includes mandatory training for participating law enforcement agencies on not only how to use the tracking technology, but also on techniques to effectively communicate with and gain the trust of both patients and their caregivers. The company is attempting to spread the program by distributing the tracking systems free to roughly 200 law enforcement and public safety agencies over the course of the next year.

The personal locator wristbands and database systems will be sold directly to caregivers for a $99 enrollment fee plus $30 per month.

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