Medical Alert Systems Review

keepimageWhether you bring home a loved one to live with you in your own home, or you keep an eye on an elderly loved one living alone, you need to know that the help that person needs is just a phone call away. With home medical alert systems, you can give your loved ones the protection that they need. These packages are suitable for your parents, aunts and uncles or even family friends.

Many caregivers invest in medical alert systems because they want to know that those they care for and love will have help available, even if they cannot reach a land line and call for help and even if they do not have a land line.

Many of the new packages available have mobile features that are perfect for those who have a more active lifestyle. You can feel safe and confident when your loved one goes to the doctor, visits the community center or just stays with family for a few days.

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howimageA medical alert system is a type of alarm that works with a dispatch office in another location.

When the user presses a button on a base unit or a mobile device, it sends a signal to the main office, and operators working in that office can then contact you or another loved one or notify emergency rescue workers in the user’s city.

As you usually pay a fee for the unit and then a monthly service fee, you need to understand the benefits of these packages and what some of the best alarms are.


What are the Benefits?

Looking at some of the top benefits of this plan is a great way to find out how these systems can meet the needs of loved ones. In addition to the standard alarms that will work with that individual’s home phone line or land line, you’ll find newer alarms that can work with a cellular network.

Constant Monitoring

Built-in Additions

Emergency Help

Tracking and Location Identification

More Independence

Automatic Calling


Signs You Need to Get One

Caring for someone of an older age or someone with one or more advanced health  conditions is hard, but medical alert systems can make your life easier. No matter how much care you offer, you should still look at some signs that it’s time to install it in the home of a loved one.

Current Location

Phone Reception

Prone to Falls

Chronic Health Conditions

Medication Side Effects

Caregiver Issues


What to Look For?

  • One vs. Two Way Communications
  • Wearable Technology
  • Activity Monitoring
  • Multiple Help Buttons
  • Land Line vs. Cellular Alarm
  • Range
  • Cost
  • Contract Terms

Make sure that you read the fine print to learn more about the contract terms. Though some companies let you try out the alarm without signing a contract, others will ask that you sign a contract of up to three years in advance. If you want to cancel your contract, the company may ask that you pay a small fee or a fee equivalent to the rest of your contract.

Keep in mind that you need to decide between signing up for the plan under your own name or under the name of your loved one. If you plan on paying the bills yourself, make sure that the company has your address down as the billing address but your loved one’s home as the shipping and contact address. This ensures that the operators never make the mistake of sending emergency help to the wrong home.


Medical Alert Systems 

Medical Guardian Alarms

Medical Guardian has a strong reputation among the elderly and some great reviews online. Often consider one of the top five companies operating today, it actually offers five different programs that can benefit your loved one. You should learn about each one of those programs and compare your favorite to other plans before signing up.

 

Classic Guardian is the most affordable package that the company offers, and when new members sign up, they can get all the protection that you need for less that $1 per day. This package comes with a base station that acts like a console and a separate emergency help button. The emergency help button comes with devices that users can wear as either a bracelet or a necklace and lets them call for help when they are up to 1,300 feet away from the base station.

 

The base station works with the home’s land line and plugs into an outlet but comes with a battery that can keep the station running for up to 32 hours during a power outage. Lights on the base station come on when it has a connection and when anyone presses the emergency call button, which will automatically call an emergency operator. The included emergency button has a water-resistant design that makes it suitable for wearing in the shower or tub.

 

One of the best features of the Classic Guardian is that everyone in the family or home can use it. Medical Guardian will connect the alarm to your home and not one individual user to ensure that all members of the house can stay safe and get emergency help.

 

Home Guardian from Medical Guardian is a little more expensive, but it uses cellular towers and does not require that users have or maintain a land line. As with other packages, this plan does not ask customers to sign a contract and does not charge an activation fee. The package comes with both an emergency help button that you can wear on your person and a base station.

 

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As the base station uses cellular communications, it has a shorter range of just 600 feet. As long as the user close enough when he or she hits the emergency button, it will send an alert to the base station, which will then contact emergency operators. Those operators can call 911 and arrange for other help to come to the home.

 

The emergency help button comes with attachments that let users wear one around their neck like a necklace or on their wrist like a watch or bracelet. Buttons on the included base station let users call for assistance or reset the alarm after making a call.

 

Another option that some might like is the Mobile Guardian, which the company designed for those who spend more time out of their homes. This is much smaller in size and can fit anywhere in the home, but your loved one can also remove the device and insert it into a watch or necklace attachment for use away from home. There is an optional leather carrying case that you can buy separately for keeping the button in a convenient place like a purse or glove box.

 

This is a great option for anyone who cares for a loved one with Alzheimer’s or dementia too because it has a built-in GPS. That GPS reports back to the home office and allows the office to monitor the wearer 24/7. Not only will this help you find a lost loved one, but it also lets the office find the exact location of the wearer if he or she cannot talk.

 

As it does not require a base unit, it has an unlimited range that helps the office identify the wearer’s location, even if that person is in the middle of nowhere. It comes with a small base that acts like a charger for easily charging the battery before leaving the house. Once charged, the battery will last for a full 24 hours.

 

Though Premium Guardian is one of the more expensive options available from Medical Guardian, it also increases the personal safety and health security provided. The package comes with a charging cradle that automatically updates the software as needed and can completely charge the device’s internal battery in just four hours. It also comes with the Premium Guardian device.

 

This small device has a more compact shape that can fit in a pocket when working around the house, playing with grandchild, gardening outside or while running errands around town. Its two way communications design lets the user hear the operators on the other end while ensuring that they hear everything he or she says too. A built-in GPS lets the company monitor the wearer’s actions and track the user’s current location anytime of the day or night.

 

Its newest package is the Family Guardian package, which offers complete and total protection for everyone in your home. Its base station features a large emergency call button that you can easily find and press during an emergency. The station has a handy reset button that will completely reset the alarm later.

 

An included health alert button sends a signal to the station when pressed to contact the operators standing by. This button can work as-is or when placed inside a necklace or watch attachment for actually wearing on the body. This package also comes with three health sensors that you can place around the home to monitor what guests and loved ones do on a daily basis.

 

The Family Guardian Mobile App makes this one of the best packages you can get. This app will work with the sensors to detect the activity of each user daily and create a detailed report that it sends to registered users. You can actually use this app to let loves ones know that you’re okay or to check on loves ones you monitor through the app.

 

In addition to its packages and plans, Medical Guardian offers items that you can add on like wall buttons that you can place on walls in the home that let users call for help when they cannot cannot reach the emergency button or base station. With one of its lock boxes, you can store an extra key to the home outside and gain access to that home anytime you need or in case of an emergency involving your loved one.

 

Other optional products include extra emergency buttons that you can give to each member of your family and fall detection pendants. This pendant will automatically identify when the wearer has a fall and call for help right away without the user pressing the emergency button. The pendant is water-resistant for wearing in the bathroom.

 

This package offers health alert alarms that are suitable for all types of users and can work with a home’s existing telephone line or nearby cellular towers.


Life Alert Alarms

Do you remember the old television commercials that showed an older woman on the floor and crying out, “help, I’ve fallen and I can’t get up”? If so, then you should know the name Life Alert, which was the company behind those commercials. Life Alert is still one of the most popular health alert system companies in the world and had customers leave more than 30,000 testimonials on its website since 2008 alone.

 

Though Life Alert offers different types of packages, its most popular package consists of both a main unit and a pendant that the primary user wears on his or her body for emergency assistance. All equipment sold has UL certification and requires no maintenance to ensure that the alarm can contact help whenever the need arises.

 

Unlike other pendants that are water-resistant, the pendant sold by Life Alert it waterproof to help users call for help via the button on the front whether they’re outside in the rain or stuck in the tub. This pendant comes with a separate attachment that lets the user put the button inside for wearing it like a watch on an arm. The pendant features a battery that can last for up to seven years and a design that lets it work up to 800 feet away from the main unit.

 

When first released, Life Alert required that users have a land line that it hooked up to its main unit. That main unit can still rely on a land line but can work with a cellular connection too. In case of a power outage, the backup battery inside that unit will keep operating for up to 72 hours.

 

All the offices owned by Life Alert are in the United States, and operators monitor all devices 24/7. As soon as someone presses the emergency button or the button on the main unit, someone working in one of those offices will respond and determine who to call for help.

 

Life Alert now offers a standalone emergency help button for use in the bathroom. This button has batteries that can last for up to a full decade, and the button does not require any electrical power or even a phone line. When pressed, this button will provide instant contact with an emergency dispatcher who will ask about the situation and decide what to do next.

 

This button can help avoid embarrassing accidents when an elderly person slips in the tub. Instead of sending paramedics to the home just to help that person get out and get dressed, the dispatcher can contact a child or friend and let that person know that the user needs assistance.

 

New features that you can add to the package include an audio monitoring security alarm. It uses small microphones that can pick up even the tiniest of sounds. This lets users listen for robbers or other people outside the home.

 

Once the user detects something out of the ordinary, the user can press the emergency button that corresponds with those microphones. Dispatchers can listen to those sounds and understand the reason for the call without asking a lot of questions. They can then arrange for a police car in the area to stop by.

 

Life Alert Mobile is perfect for those who spend a lot of time away from home. With the mobile version of the classic home alarm, you can now let your loved one get emergency help while out of the home. Whether the user leaves a phone inside while gardening or loses a cell phone in a car accident, the mobile alarm will still keep the individual safe.

 

This product will work in any location with a GSM cellular network available. When your loved one presses a button on the mobile device, it calls into a local office and lets the user talk with a dispatcher about the reason for the call. That dispatcher can call police, fire and rescue or an ambulance.

 

As the mobile device has built-in GPS, the dispatcher can even find the user’s current location and tell help exactly where to go. It comes with batteries that last for up to 10 years and do not need charging.

 

You can also sign up for the protection offered by the Life Alert mobile app, which you can download to a loved one’s smartphone. This app then lets the user press a dedicated button on the phone to connect with a Life Alert office and get in touch with a dispatcher. That dispatcher will not only call for help, but he or she will keep talking until that help arrives.

 

Though many people know Life Alert for its old advertising campaign and commercials, the company now offers a number of products that can keep you safe at home and on the go.


Bay Alarm

Another popular manufacturer of medical alert alarms is Bay Alarm Medical. This company offers products that feature an emergency alert button. Pressing that button puts users in touch with an operator who will decide whether to call your loved ones or professionals.

 

Its most basic package is its in-home health alert alarm. This package comes with a base unit that has a bright red button right in the center on the front that can call for help when hit or pressed. It comes with a separate emergency button that users can press when further away from the base unit.

 

Installing this unit is super easy. As it works with any land line, you simply plug a cable from the telephone line into the back, plug the power adapter into the bag and then plug that adapter into an available outlet. You can then press the button to test the alarm and ensure it’s working before you leave a loved one home alone.

 

A great benefit to this alarm is that users can actually take it with them. As it works with any land line, they can plug it in and use it in a hotel room or a loved one’s home. The battery inside will last for up to 32 hours and automatically charge itself after a power outage.

 

If your loved one does not have a land line, you can sign up for its cellular network plan, which works anywhere AT&T has coverage. Users do not need AT&T coverage themselves, but this package does recommend that you check the available strength of the AT&T network in the area you will use it before you sign up. It comes with the same battery backup that will automatically charge itself when the home has power again.

 

While many alarms will keep your loved one safe at home, Bay Alarm Medical offers a system that will keep that person safe while on the go. Its GPS Alert System almost looks like a music player or a small electronic but uses the AT&T network to monitor and track a user’s location 24/7. That makes it a good choice for those who care for loved ones who tend to wander away.

 

The button on this device puts users in contact with a live operator any hour of the day or night, and a speaker button on the device helps them tell that person everything about their situation. The operator can even use the device’s built-in GSP to find a user, if the user isn’t sure of his or her location. It comes with a charging cradle and a battery that can provide power for up to 72 hours.

 

When you sign up for one of the in-home or cellular packages offered by the company, you can add an automatic fall detection alarm for one low price. A long cord around this emergency button lets users wear it around their neck. It can identify a fall and send a signal to the main unit from up to 800 feet away to get someone out to help that person get up, and the wearer can use the button to signal help too.

 

Though this company isn’t quite as large as some of the other companies that make home alert alarms, it still makes some good products that you might like using.

Protection Services

Standalone Products

Elderly Home Help Alarm Life Monitor

Smart Caregiver Two Call Buttons & Wireless Caregiver Pager

Just in Case Pendant on the Go