Dementia and Wandering Behavior: Concern for the Lost Elder

Dementia and Wandering Behavior: Concern for the Lost Elder

Paperback(Revised ed.)

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Winner of an AJN Book of the Year Award!

Alzheimer's is quickly becoming the epidemic of the 21st century. Today, an estimated four million Americans suffer from this devastating disease. This number could explode to 14 million by the year 2050, when baby boomers come of age.

Written in a clear and accessible style, Dementia and Wandering Behavior brings attention to this life-threatening problem and helps professionals and family caregivers understand that there are preventative measures available.

By focusing on specific responses to wandering behavior and describing ways to create a safe environment in the home, community, and care facility, this book teaches you how to maximize autonomy while minimizing risk for people with dementia in your care.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780826102720
Publisher: Springer Publishing Company
Publication date: 05/03/2006
Edition description: Revised ed.
Pages: 232
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.48(d)

About the Author

Nina M. Silverstein, PhD, is Associate Professor of Gerontology at the Universitiy of Massachusetts, Boston, College of Public and Community Service. Since 1984, she has worked closely with the Alzheimer's Association on projects related to patient care, caregiver, and community support. She served as Chairperson of the Massachusetts Statewide Chapter of the Alzheimer's Association and was also a long-time board member for the Council on Aging in Needham, Massachusetts--the first accredited and reaccredited Senior Center in Massachusetts. She is a Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America and an active member of the American Society on Aging and the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education.

A graduate of the Heller School, Brandeis University, Dr. Silverstein has been publishing and presenting on aging issues at national conferences for over 20 years.

Gerald Flaherty has been with the Massachusetts Chapter of the Alzheimer's Association since 1989. As Director of Special Projects, he coordinates the national Safe Return Program in Massachusetts, the chapter's Medical & Scientific Advisory Committee, and its media relations. In his previous work as an analyst in the Massachusetts State Senate, he helped draft legislation to assist caregivers of people with dementia. His mother died of Alzheimer's disease.

Safe Return is a registry-based program that coordinates efforts to locate and recover people with dementia who become lost. It is operated 24 hours a day by the Alzheimer's Association with support from the U.S. Justice Department. In his role as Safe Return Coordinator, Mr. Flaherty has been involved in some 800 lost patient cases, and has provided training to police, firefighters, EMS, search and rescue personnel, and elder care workers throughout Massachusetts. He has helped to develop training materials and videos for the Safe Return Program, and serves on several local and national advisory groups. His articles have appeared in the American Journal of Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders, the Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect , and the Attorney General's Law Enforcement Newsletter.

Terri Salmons Tobin, PhD, is Associate Director of Research at Advocates for Human Potential, Inc., in Sudbury, Massachusetts. She received her PhD in Gerontology from the University of Massachusetts, Boston, in 1999. Her dissertation was titled Wandering, Getting Lost, and Alzheimer's Disease: Influences on Precautions Taken and Levels of Supervision Provided by Caregivers. Dr. Tobin's work on this book was also influenced by her position as an Alzheimer's respite caregiver and "walking buddy" during graduate school. Her current areas of research include those involving caregiver issues, Alzheimer's disease and wandering behavior, housing and serious mental illnesses, and co-occuring disorders.

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Table of Contents




Part I: Introduction


• Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias: An Overview
• Comprehensive Review of the Literature on Wandering Behavior
• The Dementia Wanderer: A Profile

Part II: Current Community Responses to Wandering Behavior: What Works, What Doesn't, and Why


• The Caregiver
• Law Enforcement and Technology
• Long-Term Care Providers

Part III: Creating a Safe Environment


• The Home: Recommendations for Family Caregivers
• The Facility: Recommendations for Long-Term Care and Assisted Living Residences
• The Community: Recommendations for Elder Care and Acute Care Providers
• The Lifesaving Role of "First Responders:" Recommendations for Police, EMS, Fire, and Search & Rescue Personnel




What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"The book's strength is the rich use of research materials to present a well thought out and comprehensive presentation on wandering behavior. Creatively the authors weave research materials, newspaper reports, and statistical data into an easy to read, educational, and instructive book....[The authors] share a wealth of collective knowledge and expertise in caring for older adults. The book is an excellent resource for nursing homes, assisted living facilities, students of geriatric studies, new caregivers, and newly diagnosed older adults."--Social Work in Health Care

"This easy-to-read book offers concrete suggestions for the range of professional caregivers in community and institutional settings, for people with dementia and their families in the community, as well as for first-responders such as police and search and rescue personnel. [It] speaks to the risks associated with wandering behavior and demonstrates that acknowledgement of these risks leads to early precautions to avoid them....provides invaluable information to help Alzheimer's patients remain longer and more secure with their friends and families in the community, and more safe with their caregivers in facilities."

-Rep. Edward J. Markey, Co-chair, Congressional Task Force on Alzheimer's Disease

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