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Policies & Procedures to Prevent Wandering

By Heather Brown
November 18, 2014

People who suffer from these diseases have a tendency to wander. When a person has dementia or Alzheimer’s Disease, they become confused and disoriented. Once out in the world, they may forget where they were going and not recognize their surroundings. This can be incredibly dangerous. There have been cases of wandering where the patient was found dead days after they went missing. There are steps and policies that should be in place to help prevent wandering in your assisted living facility.
The first step that should be taken is to have a strict entrance and exit policy for all residents. If the entrances and exits are carefully monitored, it is less likely that a resident can get past these doors unless authorized to do so.
It is wise for assisted living facilities to have a visitor sign in policy. Because residents in these facilities can leave the facility to visit with family and friends, it is important to know exactly who the resident is with when they leave the grounds. If the resident does not return to the facility, there will be documentation as to whom the resident left with.
One excellent  way to keep residents from wandering from the assisted living facility and getting lost is to have the residents wear surveillance bracelets. These bracelets will have a GPS monitoring system so that if a patient does wander off, they can be easily located. A predetermined perimeter can be set up and if a resident leaves that perimeter an alarm will sound to alert staff.
Having alarms on doors and windows can also prevent residents from wandering away from their assisted living facility. If there are alarms that sound when doors or windows are opened, the staff will be alerted in time to stop the resident from leaving the facility.
The health and well being of your  residents is extremely important and implmenting proceduresto protect Alzheimer’s and dementia patients from wandering will give you peace of mind.

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