Missing Dementia Residents Can Have Serious Effects

16 May 2016 6:19 AMDPT DPT
Missing Dementia Residents Can Have Serious Effects

Recent news articles about Dementia residents, who have gone missing from ACF's, bring up some serious questions for you as an aged care worker.

If you google "Missing Dementia" you will get many articles from all over the world. This doesn't mean People living with Dementia (PLWD) go missing all the time but it brings up some questions for you, the aged care worker, about your workplace and it's security procedures.

From an article by Alzheimer’s Australia  

“Of the 6,700 missing people reported to police each year, over 300 are older people or people living with dementia,” Assistant Commissioner Hogan said.

“While we find 99.7% of those who go missing, there are still some cases that end tragically.

“We estimate that for every one person who goes missing in Queensland, 12 people – such as family and friends - are affected by these cases." Full article here>>

The article goes on to explain a new 'Safely Home' program where PLWD have wrist bands with contact information engraved on the band that means the person can be returned home if found by the public.

Another news report told of a gentleman with Dementia, who was found wandering 6 kilometres away, after moving into a new ACF in Melbourne only hours before.  Read here>>

The questions for you...

Is your workplace Dementia Unit really secure?

Are you well trained in your Dementia residents' wandering behaviours?

What is the procedure for new Dementia residents? Is there one?

Next time you work in the Dementia unit observe closely how secure it is. It’s more than door keypads and posters on walls, but the attitude of all the staff towards security and behaviours, new residents procedures to settle them in. Also how strict are the staff about personal security devices e.g. alarm bracelets or mats.

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