The Locating Technology Project: Lessons Learned

Elizabeth Steggles, Dip OT, OT Reg. (Ont), MSc (candidate), Sue Baptiste MHSc, OT Reg. (Ont.), James Leslie, Mehdi Tabatabaeinia, PhD, OT Reg. (Ont).


In 2005, the Ontario Ministry of Community and Social Services (MCSS) announced the launch of a project to examine the effectiveness of technologies designed to assist people who wander as a result of conditions such as autism, Alzheimer’s disease and developmental disabilities.  The Locating Technology Project (LTP), a collaboration between the School of Rehabilitation Science at McMaster University and the MCSS focused on determining the feasibility of available locating devices for improving the safety and security of persons facing obstacles in regard to communication and/or cognitive and adaptive functioning as well as underlining the relative merits and limitations of selected technologies. The project additionally sought to gain an enhanced understanding of the complex realities related to the implementation of locating technology for people at risk of wandering.

This paper provides an overview of the project but focuses on the key learning as it relates to consumer issues.


Locating technology, wandering, dementia, autism, developmental disability

School of Rehabilitation Science,
IAHS Room 403, McMaster University
1400 Main Street West
Hamilton, Ontario, L8S 1C7. 
Tel: 905 525 9140 ext. 21096. 
Fax: 905 524 0069.


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