How to Choose the Best Medical Alert System

best medical alert

When you think about getting a medical alert system, you might wonder which type of device is right for you. There are several options to accommodate various lifestyles, needs, and budgets. Let’s take a deeper look into three of the most popular medical alert systems and what factors you might use to choose one.

You already know that falling down can lead to serious injury for seniors and the elderly. The CDC reports that more than one in four of those over the age of 65 fall every year, and that once you’ve fallen, your chances of falling again actually double. Tragically, a fall can easily lead to broken bones or head trauma[1].

But did you know that there are also dire consequences to languishing on the floor after a fall, unable to get help? The British Medical Journal studied the effects of lying on the floor after a fall in those aged 90 or older. The researchers found that 82% of falls happened when the person was alone, and 80% of those who fell had trouble getting up – or stayed on the floor for at least an hour until they were found.

If a person is on the floor for a long time, there is a higher risk of hospital admission within the year after the fall and a greater chance of winding up in a long-term care facility. That time on the floor can lead to pressure sores, carpet burns, dehydration, pneumonia, hypothermia, or in the very worst of cases, death[2].

While an emergency button alarm can’t prevent falls and accidents from happening, it does eliminate long times spent on the floor waiting for someone to arrive and supply the necessary help.

Here are some of the different types of alert systems and how to decide which is best for you or your loved one.

The In-Home System with Optional Fall Detection

An In-Home Classic Medical Alert is one of the most affordable options on the market today. This is an excellent option for those who stay at home most of the time and are on a limited budget.

This system requires a landline. It comes with a pendant and a base unit. When you press the button on the pendant, the help signal goes through the base unit. Within seconds, a friendly, trained professional is on the line to help get whatever form of assistance you need. To use this device properly, you must be within 600 feet of the base unit – to put that in perspective, a football field is 300 feet long[3]. So the range of the base unit is the equivalent of two football fields. That means it works even if you are on the porch, in the garage, or in your yard.

The medical alert button is showerproof. That means you can take it into the shower with you – and that’s great, because according to the New York Times, two-thirds of all falls around the tub or shower result in emergency room visits. And of those injuries sustained in a bathroom fall, 31% of them resulted in head trauma. Having the ability to simply press a button to get help can mean the difference between a good outcome and a very bad one.

You can also upgrade to fall detection with this system. Fall detection works through the use of tiny fall sensors in the device. If a fall is detected, the medical alarm automatically contacts the monitoring center for you, even if you can’t press the button. Highly-trained professionals can send the help you need, even if you can’t speak to tell them what happened – and at Alert1, they will always stay on the line with you until help arrives (not every medical alert company does this).

If you live in an area where severe weather is the norm, you might worry about power outages. The 24-hour backup battery on the base unit helps ensure that even when the lights go out, you can still get the help you need.

On-the-Go Medical Alert Pendant with Optional Fall Detection

An On-the-Go Medical Alert with GPS is the ideal choice if you are active or traveling, across town or even across the country. There is no base unit. Communication takes place through a speaker right in the pendant itself. It works in all 50 states, so you are covered no matter where you roam.  It uses the reliable AT&T and Verizon wireless networks; between the two networks, there are very few “quiet zones” in the US, so you can be rest assured that you can get help when you need it.

Just as with the in-home option, the pendant is showerproof. It’s recommended that you wear it all the time, no matter where you are, as you never know when an emergency might strike. There is only a brief period about once a week when you must charge the pendant in a cradle that is provided with the system. It only takes 2 – 3 hours to charge the unit.

This system also includes optional fall detection. When you fall down, the device itself can send an alert for help. Then trained professionals will talk to you over the speaker located in the pendant – and if you can’t speak, the GPS technology in the unit will disclose where you are so help can be sent immediately.

The Comfortable and Sporty Medical Alert Watch

The On-the-Go Wrist Watch Medical Alert is a lightweight watch with a traditional look. It’s great for those who are very active and desire a sporty look.

The medical alert watch does not offer fall detection like the pendants do, but it does offer GPS to help track your location if you do have an emergency. It also promotes better health with a pedometer to track your steps and a weather app to let you know the best time to get those steps in outside.

Communication happens through a two-way speaker in the watch face. You can choose between three styles to display the time: digital, analog, or date/time. It is showerproof, meant to be worn at all times for maximum protection, and compatible with pacemakers. The watch does require charging.

Is Alert1 the Best Medical Alert Company for You?

There are several medical alert companies offering devices. So why choose Alert1? Let’s start with experience – Alert1 has been keeping people safe for more than 30 years, and we have thousands of members in all 50 states who are confidently wearing their emergency button alarms right now.

Unlike the other guys, we don’t charge for the equipment. Our monitoring service – those compassionate, highly-trained professionals there to answer your call – is one of the most affordable in the industry. When you press the button, our professionals stay on the line with you until help arrives. It might be hard to believe that not all companies do this, but it’s true! We care about your well-being, and we’ll prove it by staying on the line with you so you’ll never have to face an emergency alone.

You have unlimited button pushes and talk time with Alert1. In fact, we want you to press the button occasionally when you don’t have an emergency at all, just to connect with our call center and get you comfortable and familiar with your device so you know what to expect in the event of an emergency.

At Alert1, your health and safety come first. Free consultations are always available to help you decide which medical alarm would be the best option for your lifestyle and personal needs, as well as your budget.