Sisters push for extra support for dementia patients through new program

Published: Updated:

COLLIER COUNTY, Fla. – Two sisters would like to see extra attention given to dementia patients hospitalized locally. They tell WINK News it can simply be done with a wristband.

“People in the hospital thought my father was a cute old man. He use to flirt and make jokes, but he wasn’t capable of understanding anything” said Gina Bove.

Anthony Bove was diagnosed with dementia in 2011. He died a year later at the age of 81.

Now his daughters Gina Bove and Maria Schiller are pushing for a better support system when it comes to dementia patients and their families in local hospitals.

“Because it’s so important, once you get in there, lots of families don’t know what to do” said Schiller.

So she’s working with the Alzheimer’s support network on a program called “911 to discharge.”

“When you first get into the emergency room, you need to let the individual know that this person has dementia.”

Schiller said the best way to do that is through a wristband similar to the one a patient would wear if they were allergic to a medication. She came up with a grey one called Grey Bands Matter.

“So that anybody throughout their entire hospital stay will know this band means this person has dementia has memory issues they aren’t able to make decisions, notify the family.”

There’s already a program like this in Tampa, it’s called the Wristband Project.

“A lot of bands in the hospital are color coated,” said Bove. “So I mean, how difficult would that be to put a grey band on someone? It’s not demeaning to the patient, it’s just another band to identify a medical issue.”

Copyright ©2023 Fort Myers Broadcasting. All rights reserved.

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without prior written consent.