From time to time you might see announcement in the news and social media for information on a missing elderly person.
People with conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, Down Syndrome, Autism, and Prader-Willi may wander. Traditionally, when a care giver discovers a missing loved one or patient, they call 911 and the Sheriff’s Office mounts a search and rescue effort to find the patient.
A lost patient is a major medical emergency. The patient may have difficulty with reasoning, judgement, and communication. Searchers heavily rely on a lost patient’s ability to answer when they hear their name. if the patient cannot answer, or chooses not to answer, the search effort becomes more difficult and time consuming.
If an elderly Alzheimer's patient is left outside for more than 24 hours, their chance of survival drops to 50% due to the risk of exposure. Over the years, Snohomish County has had several tragic incidents of Alzheimer’s patients passing away before they could be found.
In 2001 the Sheriff’s Office launched Project Care Track after a search for an Alzheimer’s patient in South Snohomish County failed to find them before they died.
With Project Care Track, the patient has a safety net that can find them quickly if they wander away from home or where they normally reside
With Project Care Track, the patient has a safety net that can find them quickly if they wander away from home or where they normally reside.
Under Project Care Track, a client is given a one-ounce electronic bracelet that they wear on their wrist. The bracelet emits a unique radio signal that searchers can use to find the client.
The Sheriff’s Office Volunteer Search and Rescue Unit, has radio receiver’s that can receive the signal from the bracelet. Recovery times have been reduced from several hours/days to often less than an hour. And fatalities have been reduced by 90%.
If you have a family member or a friend that you think would benefit from Project Care Track, contact the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office at:
Information Line: (425) 388-3825
Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office: