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Dementia and the Herbert Protocol

When a person goes missing, it is very distressing for family and friends and can be even more worrying when the missing person has Dementia.

Happy elderly woman and her helpful assistant

The Herbert Protocol is a simple risk reduction tool to help the police in their search for people with Dementia who go missing.

The Herbert Protocol is a form that contains vital information about the missing person.

The form is filled in by the person with Dementia, their family or carers. The completed form should be kept safely by carers, family or friends, but where it can be found quickly in the unfortunate event of the person going missing. The police will only ever ask for the form if the person is reported missing.

Please don’t send it beforehand and do not give it to anyone who you do not know or trust. When a person is reported missing, the police need a vast amount of information from people who are likely to be in a heightened state of anxiety. Extracting that information takes time and may not always be accurate, particularly when it relates to historic information which can be important when searching for a person with Dementia.

The Herbert Protocol is designed to collect most of the information in slow time, so that it can be passed to the police quickly if it is ever needed. It will help the police in their search for the missing person, saving valuable time and help  return them to safety. The form should be kept up to date with a recent photograph of the person that can be passed to the police if needed. If you believe a person has gone missing and concerned for their safety, call the police on 999 and tell the police operator that you have a Herbert Protocol.

Herbert protocol form to print and deliver by hand[pdf] Herbert protocol form in Microsoft Word[docx] Do you care for someone who has dementia?[pdf]