Innovation That Matters

GPS-enabled shoes to monitor movements of Alzheimer’s sufferers

Sport & Fitness

GTX Corp and Aetrex have created a shoe to help families of Alzheimer’s sufferers, with a GPS device in the sole.

A couple of months ago we featured Mi-Look, a device from Japanese company KDDI designed to give families peace of mind by tracking the movements of elderly relatives. Now with a similar goal, GTX Corp in the US have designed a shoe specifically targeted at Alzheimer’s sufferers, with a miniature GPS tracking device embedded in the heel. Inspired by a high profile missing child case in the US, Patrick Bertagna, Chief Executive of GTX Corp, created the shoe originally as a means of locating children easily and conveniently. The idea evolved when it became apparent that tracking devices typically used to locate people with Alzheimer’s were being rejected by the wearers, usually because they did not recognize or were suspicious of them. GTX Corp have partnered with footwear company Aetrex to create shoes that will allow for a small tracking device to be placed inside a cavity within the mid sole. Family members and carers can monitor the wearer on an interactive map, viewed via their smart phone or computer. There is also the option to programme “safe” areas, with a text being sent to a family member or carer if the wearer crosses this boundary. The shoe comes in a range of styles, will cost between USD 200 and USD 300, and is designed to last between one to three years. With approximately half a million people in the UK, and over five million people in the US suffering from Alzheimer’s, the disease affects individuals and their families worldwide. Is there a need for a similar concept to bring peace of mind to families near you?



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