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NHS and police encourage Scottish citizens to download app to help find people with dementia if they lose their way

Friday 13 April 2018

Purple Alert is a community-minded app to help people look out for their neighbours. It was designed by people living with dementia and carers, Alzheimer Scotland staff, Police Scotland, Social Work, Dementia Friends Scotland, Health and Social Care Partnerships and telecare services during 2017.

Regional branches of the National Health Service (NHS) for Scotland, as well as Policy Scotland are now actively encouraging people to download and use the app, which aims to help find people living with dementia if they are lost.

The app allows carers to share details about a person living with dementia if they lose their way, which alerts registered users within a 30 mile (approx. 50km) so they can help find the missing person.

Purple Alert is the first app of its kind in the UK and is available for free download to iOS and Android smartphones.

NHS Grampian and Alzheimer Scotland dementia nurse consultant Lyn Irvine said:

“Staying independent within the community is very important for the well-being of people with dementia. This freedom can sometimes come with risks - bustling high streets, shopping centres and busy parks can quickly become overwhelming for some people with dementia and they might want to get away from the high noise levels or overcrowding. That can lead to people becoming lost or disorientated and is one of the biggest concerns we hear from people living with dementia, their families and their carers. This app is aimed at helping to change that.”

“It has already been a big hit with people living with the condition, families, carers and volunteer agencies but for it to be truly effective we need members of the wider public to do their bit by downloading and installing the app.”

To find out more about Purple Alert or to download the app, visit purplealert.org.uk

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