I was waiting for a bus the other day when an elderly woman approached me and asked when the next bus was due – when I asked her which one she wanted and where she wanted to go she merely repeated the question as if I had not spoken. Clearly she was confused and unaware of her surroundings – although on appearance she seemed a perfectly normal well-dressed person – eventually she wandered off to another bus stop where presumably she repeated her bus query.
What can be done about this sort of situation? Probably nothing – sad to say – there are just too many “seniors” of both sexes around with no immediate family to look after them or give them a home. So they get through their days as best they can – relying in many cases on strangers to help them if they can. So from that point of view there is no ready solution. But one aspect – I believe – is possible to address and that is the disorientation as experienced by the elderly lady I encountered.
What about a bracelet or a necklace which contains an audio – similar to that of a car GPS system. Giving the person at the touch of button relevant information such as the correct bus number to get them home and also their address. So if they get confused they just press the button and get their details. I realise that there could be a risk of this being used by people with bad intentions – I think the gain outweighs the risk.