SACRAMENTO, Calif.- Patients with dementia are often prone to wandering, and unless they are found and returned home quickly, they can be at great risk of serious injury or death. Joe Johnson, Administrator at Sky Park Gardens Assisted Living near Sacramento, recently took an extra step to keep medically impaired residents of his community safe: He began using EmSeeQ® wearable locator devices made by EmFinders®. That step paid off on March 15, 2012, when a 62-year-old male resident who suffers from Alzheimer's wandered away from the community. Since he was equipped with an EmSeeQ wearable locator device, deputies were able to locate him within 11 minutes and safely return him to the community.
"We'd only had the EmSeeQ system for a week and a half when our resident wandered away from the community," said Mr. Johnson. "After we activated the device, the sheriff's deputies were able to locate our resident very quickly and return him safely. The EmSeeQ works as advertised."
The wristwatch-style EmSeeQ device uses patented E911 technology to transmit the wearer's location. When a wearer is reported missing, department personnel remotely activate the device to dial 9-1-1 and report the location to emergency responders using cellular triangulation. This method is more effective than GPS-based locators because E911 technology works inside buildings, under canopies and in remote areas, providing rescuers with more accurate information to assist in the recovery of lost individuals.
"A Licensed Provider Analyst from the California Department of Social Services conducted a routine follow-up visit with us after the wandering incident and was very impressed with the fast recovery time," noted Mr. Johnson. "We're continuously looking for new ways to keep our residents safe, and the performance of the EmSeeQ device in this instance made a believer out of me."
EmSeeQ devices have played a key role in more than a hundred rescues since the maker of the devices, EmFinders, was founded in 2009. For added safety, the wristwatch-style devices have a secure steel mesh band and a unique locking mechanism that requires a key to open. By enabling rapid rescues, the EmSeeQ device significantly reduces the risk of injury or death to medically impaired wearers and has the potential to save thousands of taxpayer dollars by enabling first responders to quickly locate at-risk individuals.
"The ability of the EmSeeQ device to pinpoint the missing individual's location so we could find him quickly was huge," said Deputy Jason Ramos of the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department. "It meant we didn't have to organize a grid search. We received an initial transmission, which provided a latitude and longitude, and then an updated transmission when the individual moved a block away, which allowed us to recover him safely. We've handled a dozen or so missing persons cases in the first three months of this year. This is the first rescue we've completed with help from the EmSeeQ device, and the success speaks for itself."
"We are very pleased our device was able to help the deputies complete the rescue so quickly and return this individual to his community," said Patrice McAree, President of EmFinders. "With over 100 rescues completed so far, the EmSeeQ has demonstrated its ability to help caregivers protect vulnerable individuals nationwide. We are thrilled we can help assisted living facilities, government agencies and first responders protect those they serve."
EmFinders, based in Frisco, TX, is a new technology company that has developed a device and subscription service for locating people with Alzheimer's or other impaired adults and children who wander and become lost. The wearable device and locator service uses advanced cellular technology to locate lost individuals, even if they wander inside a building, under a structure or just about anywhere. The device becomes activated on remote command and the locator service works in coordination with emergency responders. EmFinders is a privately held subsidiary of Liberty Media Corporation attributed to the Liberty Capital group (NASDAQ: LMCA), which owns a broad range of electronic retailing, media, communications and entertainment businesses. For more information, visit www.emfinders.com.