Silver Alert Preparation
By Office of Communication
Posted on November 14, 2012, November 14, 2012

When a relative has an impaired medical condition, such as dementia or Alzheimer's, getting information to the public quickly is essential. By having a signed doctor's note detailing the medical condition of your family member in advance, you could help meet the qualifications for a Silver Alert request by the Arlington Police Department.

It is recommended that all Texas senior citizens, 65 years and older with an impaired mental condition, have acceptable documentation of that condition. Accepted documentation is defined as a signed and dated statement issued on a physician's letterhead, diagnosing the mental impairment.

Discuss obtaining proper documentation with caregivers and legal guardians, before a wandering incident takes place.

If a risk for wandering has been identified in the patient, refer the family to the Alzheimer's Association for information on wandering triggers and prevention at or (800) 272-3900.

Encourage families to create a wandering person profile containing the name, date of birth, current photo, physical description, clothing description, documented diagnosis, vehicle information, license plate number, and a list of previous residences and favorite places.

To issue a Silver Alert, the below criteria must be met:

Is the missing person 65 years of age or older?

Is the senior citizen's domicile in Texas?

Does the senior citizen have a diagnosed impaired mental condition, and does the senior citizen's disappearance pose a credible threat to the senior citizen's health and safety? (Law enforcement shall require the family or legal guardian of the missing senior citizen to provide documentation from a medical or mental health professional of the senior citizen's condition).

Is it confirmed that an investigation has taken place verifying that the senior citizen's disappearance is due to his/her impaired mental condition, and alternative reasons for the senior citizen's disappearance have been ruled out?

Is the Silver Alert request within 72 hours of the senior citizen's disappearance?

Is there sufficient information available to disseminate to the public that could assist in locating the senior citizen? (Highway signs will be activated only if accurate vehicle information is available AND it is confirmed that the senior citizen was driving the vehicle at the time of the disappearance).

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