Project Lifesaver Kicks-Off - Southern Maryland Headline News

Project Lifesaver Kicks-Off


The Office of the Sheriff of St. Mary's County, with the support of the local community and business organizations, is initiating a Project Lifesaver program. Project Lifesaver was established in Chesapeake, Virginia, in 1999, in response to the growing concern regarding elderly residents who suffer from Alzheimer's/dementia. This population has a tendency to wander away from their caregivers, putting themselves at great personal risk, and causing anxiety and worry in family members. In one recent case in St. Mary's County, a woman walked away from her home, and tragically died before being located.

Project Lifesaver is an electronic tracking system that has proven highly effective in other jurisdictions. It allows for faster tracking of persons in this at-risk population. A watch-sized transmitter is attached to the patient, monitored daily by the caregiver and monthly by volunteers who change the battery. Should the person wander away, trained volunteers are brought in with receivers to locate the missing individual. Current success rate is 100 percent, with an average search time of 22 minutes.

The initial cost of the Project Lifesaver program is $5300 which covers set-up equipment and training for up to 15 volunteers. An additional $4000 is required for transmitters and receivers for our local applicants to the program. Members in the program will be charged a small maintenance fee which covers the costs of bands and batteries. If anyone is unable to afford the fee, expenses will be covered through the program. The Sheriff's Office is seeking donations from our community to support Project Lifesaver. You may call: 301 475-4200 x - 1922, and speak to Mary Ann Thompson, for more information.

Thank you for joining us in this effort. Tax-deductible contributions can be made payable to: Office of the Sheriff, Project Lifesaver, and mailed to:

Office of the Sheriff
St. Mary's County
23150 Leonard Hall Drive
Leonardtown, Maryland 20650

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