No. of missing dementia patients hits record-high 17,565 in 2020


The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.


©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

Login to comment

This is disconcerting, to say the least. I hope the situation improves this year.

It showed 74.2 percent of dementia sufferers who wandered off were found on the same day their disappearance was reported to police, while 99.3 percent were located within a week. Five people were found more than two years after they were reported missing.

These are impressive statistics. Good on all those involved in the location efforts.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

The number of people with dementia or suspected dementia who were reported missing in 2020 rose to 17,565, continuing to post a record high figure every year 

Those who went missing in their 20s were the leading age group at 14,516, followed by teenagers at 12,860. Of the total, about 63.6 percent were male and about 36.4 percent were female.

it breaks my heart to read news like this. I imagine these people would be in a world of confusion and hurt if they happen to find themselves in bad company. My great grandmother had dementia in her latter years and went missing for months and was found nearly 100 kilometers away in her home town. I hope these missing people are in good hands even if they are not in healthcare facilities.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

These poor lost souls desperately need Japanese society’s immediate care and concern.

Some amazing resources available to the NPA to impressively track these specific numbers and individual identities.

Can the NPA & the Ministry of Justice also compose similar statistics and track individual child-predators & sex-offenders, for example?

That would seem equally important and humanitarian.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The number of overall people who went missing last year, including those who do not have dementia, dropped 9,911 to 77,022, the lowest since comparative data became available in 1956.

Definitely would have guessed somewhere in the 100s. This topic sure doesn't get the ink it deserves.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Sadly this is not a problem unique to Japan.

But ( I am now just speculating ) could the widely used public address system throughout Japan a major factor in the large percentage found with the same day?

In my home/workshop I regularly hear the ward office announcement that some elderly person is missing from such and such care home or their family home.

Description, where they were last seen etc ..

I don't think I would know about these things without those announcements otherwise.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Consider getting an Airtag or Tile and attach it to something he/she would bring habitually.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Apple Watches with cellular would fix this problem. My first thought was airtags and tiles but I think they wouldn't work well in rural Japan.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

We sometimes get an alert on our city disaster app when someone is missing. Apple watches won't work because they can be taken off.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

People already chip dogs. If one notices dementia setting in, chip grandpa/grandma.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

The progress of dementia and other failing symptoms among elderly people has been global phenomenon since the outset of virus crisis. It's reported that people have suffered most under severe lockdowns. The less mobile (forcibly) we are the more aged we become.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

The progress of dementia and other failing symptoms among elderly people has been global phenomenon since the outset of virus crisis.

Actually it has been a growing problem since life expectancy has become longer, body lived longer due to modern medicine but that does not mean the brain goes along .

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

This is the reason we pay ¥500000 a month to care for my partners mother.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Are you kidding me? You can tag and track your car, bicycles, smartphones , school and kindergarten children, yes and even expensive sports shoes now, but cannot say anything about the current location of thousands of dementia patients ? Come on…that’s obviously a fake.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

@laguna chips in dogs use RFID, used to identify strays when found, they don't transmit location data.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Underskin tag for tracking and scanning when found.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Is the point of the story that so many dementia sufferers went missing or that there are many people suffering dementia?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Perhaps a lot of people with dementia think they're missing but they're actually not.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )


Apple Watches with cellular would fix this problem.

My father had dementia, and while he wasn't a wanderer, in the early stages of his 10 year ordeal, he would have extreme frustrations with his Mac that I had purchased for him him so we could communicate easier. I had the same machine and could control his Mac from my mine from 5000 miles away. Despite my "parental controls" I placed on his computer, he managed to circumnavigate these and install an older OS version using a CD he had hidden somewhere in his house. He did this multiple times until I eventually confiscated the CD's. Boy was he agitated.

I couldn't imagine getting him to keep an Apple Watch on his wrist let alone convincing him to leave it alone to make it useful, even if you can lock the screen. He would just hide it or cut it off. He was very mischievous. Before all this, my dad was a brilliant, gentle soul. He even had a PhD in economics.

In his care facility we eventually housed him, he hid his electric shaver and other things in his walker/chair that had a hidden storage space underneath the seat(unbeknownst to us at the time).

I loved my father immensely. He had a profound influence on my life. However, to those going through their own journey with their aging parents with dementia, you have my fullest empathy. Hang in there.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites