GPS-enabled microchips could help track patients with dementia and other serious conditions

Firm reveals plans for chip triggered by body heat and designed to record vital signs

A microchip GPS system could help track patients with dementia

A firm specialising in vending machines is working on a new innovation that will use GPS to track patients with dementia and other serious medical conditions.

Three Square Market’s invention will use a GPS-enabled chip which would be body-heat activated and also have voice recognition and the ability to track vital signs. This would prove useful for a number of medical conditions, including heart disease, dementia, Parkinson’s Disease, Huntington’s Disease, Pick’s Disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease, and Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome.

The company’s main business is developing and selling mini self-service kiosks to employers for placement in their break rooms.

But the company began attracting media attention last year when it announced it had microchipped its employees so they could operate a locked door or a vending machine by waving their hand at it rather than with a chip-embedded card.

It has now set up a separate chip business, Three Square Chip, but the chip itself will be manufactured by a third party in the US.

Three Square Chip’s website says the chip will have capabilities to store a patient’s medical and personal information and provide security and tracking of prescription drug access, in addition to non-medical uses.

Company president, Patrick McMullan, said dementia patients would only have the chip inserted if they could give informed consent.

“I’m not interested in tracking people,” he said. “I’m interested in providing a useful tool for dementia patients.”