Tuesday, September 3, 2013
Editor's note: Our guest blogger this week is Daniel Thommen, Managing Director of LOSTnFOUND AG, a Swiss-based company that makes tracking systems for the transportation and health care industries. See what other companies that have gone Google have to say.
With 20 employees and offices in Germany, France, Switzerland and Poland, LOSTnFOUND sells telematics systems that enable companies to keep track of goods all the way from the warehouse to the store using GPS technology. Our company was the first to develop this technology for the transportation industry in 2009 and is one of the leading companies using this technology in Europe. We realized these systems could be used not just to help track packages, but also to find people who are lost and need help. So LOSTnFOUND used Google Maps and Geolocation APIs to develop a product called guard2me that helps people keep track of their loved ones who suffer from Alzheimer’s Disease.
Millions of people around the world every year are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, which is characterized by dementia. Getting lost is a common problem for people with the disease because their memory is impaired and they easily get confused and wander off. Patients can quickly find themselves in dangerous situations and have no idea what their address is or how to contact their care provider or family.
guard2me has a GPS sensor embedded in a watch worn around the patient’s wrist to track the location of the patient at all times, allowing care providers and family members to locate a patient who is lost or in an emergency situation. The GPS is complemented by an innovative Cell-Locate technology which triangulates signals to determine positions when satellite coverage is not available. So guard2me does not lose coverage when used indoors. GSM availability keeps it ‘live’ when a GPS signal is out of range. This means that the patient’s location can be pinpointed even within a building.
Care providers and family members can see exactly where the patient is on an online map, as well as access the Web-based system. Care providers looking after multiple patients can use an iOS mobile app to see where each patient is at any time.
There is a huge need for digital aids that can help medical providers monitor patients remotely, respond faster to emergencies and provide more attention to patients without interfering with their lifestyle and activities. guard2me helps keep Alzheimer’s patients safe from harm and provides loved ones peace of mind that if a family member gets lost or falls, help will be on the way quickly. This allows patients to maintain their independence and freedom, rather than forcing them into care facilities and 24-hour care. And that makes everyone happier.