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  First of Its Kind Partnership Helps Our Most Vulnerable

May 20, 2015 10:16 ET

Chief Paul Martin of the Durham Regional Police Service and Robert Ridge, President and CEO of MedicAlert Foundation Canada, announced a new partnership today that will provide Durham police officers with rapid access to the identity information of wandering or missing persons through MedicAlert ID bracelets. The partnership is the first of its kind in Canada and is significant as it unites innovative healthcare technology and policing techniques in order to ensure that the communitys most vulnerable people are protected.

The initiative, which involves the collaboration of the Durham Police, MedicAlert and the Alzheimer Society, is expected to reunite missing or lost persons in Durham Region with their loved ones in a more efficient and safe manner.

Time is of the essence in a missing person case, says Chief Paul Martin, Sometimes it takes hours to get a photo from the caregivers and even then, the pictures are faded or 20 years old. Under this new initiative, we will have access to vital descriptors and up-to-date photos right away. This will greatly enhance our ability to find the person.

Officers will have access to the personal and caregiver information of wandering or missing persons through MedicAlert ID bracelets linked to a secure database.

MedicAlert and the Durham Police have taken the next step towards protecting those most vulnerable, said Robert Ridge, President and CEO of MedicAlert. Our unique partnership not only helps residents right here in Durham, but sets the precedent to protect others across the country. I encourage all Canadian police forces, to take a bold step and follow Durham Polices lead. Lets get our loved ones safely home.

The program works two ways. Once registered as a MedicAlert member, a person receives a body worn medical ID - in most cases a bracelet which features a unique engraved number. If this person wanders, their caregiver can call police with the ID number. Via a link with MedicAlerts up-to-date database, the officer can instantly access descriptive information and even data about past wandering tendencies, helping locate the wandering individual. Secondly, when a lost or non-communicative person is found wearing their MedicAlert ID, police will be able to access the database, immediately identifying and reuniting them with their loved ones faster.

People with dementia who go missing or become lost are exposed to serious danger, even death. This new partnership will help facilitate a quick response for those who may be found wandering and return them safely home to their loved ones, said Denyse Newton, Executive Director of the Alzheimer Society of Durham Region. We are pleased to support this new initiative for persons living with dementia in our community.

To learn more about the partnership and MedicAlerts services, local families are invited to attend a community information event:

Saturday, May 23rd, 2015 at 10 a.m.
Pickering Town Centre (main doors)
Coffee & snacks provided

For more information about Medicalert and the MedicAlert Safely Home program, please visit MedicAlert

For more information about efforts being made to help people with dementia, please visit the Alzheimer Society of Durham Region .

Below are attached files.
MedicAlert Partnership (JPG file, 845.9K bytes)
Speaking with the media (JPG file, 460.1K bytes)
MedicAlert products (JPG file, 980.9K bytes)