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GPS wristwatch locates wandering seniors, contacts care team

February 13, 2013
by Pamela Tabar, Senior Editor
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A Canadian company has designed a GPS-based wander management wristwatch capable of tracking those with dementia—and calling their caregivers with the location details.

The TRiLOC Personal Locator, developed by iLOC Technologies, Montreal, and scheduled to hit the market next month, looks and feels like a digital wristwatch, but it performs more functions than Dick Tracy’s wrist radio.

The device is a product of the miniaturization trend, stuffing sophisticated GPS and cellular communications technology into a bracelet barely three inches wide. As both a tracking device and a communications device, it can transmit the wearer’s location to a caregiver’s cell phone app or to a secure tracking website, and allows caregivers to have a two-way conversation with the wearer. Through settings, specific wander management perimeters can be set, alerting caregivers before the wearer even wanders off the property.

The product was designed with Alzheimer’s and Austism Spectrum Disorder specifically in mind, the company’s website notes. Researchers are projecting Alzheimer’s rates to triple in the next 35 years.