Friday, June 12, 2009

Tracking Alzheimer's Victims - One Shoe at a Time

gtx shoe.jpg
For those of you who have family members or friends suffering the ravages of Alzheimer's, here is an idea that can help bring some peace to a difficult situation. The tracking company GTX Corp and shoe manufacturer Aetrex Worldwide are teaming up to create shoes with built in GPS transponders.

It's a very solid idea for keeping track of those who, unfortunately, can no longer keep track of themselves. The shoes will allow accurate location within a 30 foot radius. According to Andrew Carle who is an assistant professor at George Mason, the shoes are a good idea because while patients often remove new objects placed on them, getting dressed is one of the things patients tend to retain in memory.

Like other types of tracking devices (mainly for parents of small children), the device allows for a "geo-fence" boundary to be placed around the patient's home or place of residence. When the "fence" is breached e-mail and text messages can be sent to caregivers and the patient can then be tracked via the web.

No word on pricing yet, but the peace of mind this could bring is huge. We've all heard horror stories of patients getting lost by simply wandering off. This is a great solution for that.

The product is slated to begin testing by the end of the year.

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