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Things to know before buying a medical alert system

Things to know before buying a medical alert system

A medical alert system (or a personal emergency response system), is an easy-to-use communication tool that lets people contact emergency healthcare professionals. This system is designed to alert the monitoring system or emergency personnel during a sudden situation that requires medical assistance, such as a fall. The device can be worn as a wristband or around one’s neck. After assessing the situation, medical personnel and family members are informed, and timely treatment is initiated.

Types of medical alert systems
These devices can be categorized based on their key features. Some systems can come with a subscription plan and a monthly fee. The common types of medical alert systems are:

Monitored: When one presses the button on this device, it sends an alert to the monitoring center. An agent will then talk to the patient through the wearable device, and based on the severity of the situation, family members or emergency services may be alerted. These systems usually come with a monthly fee, and some of their perks are free spouse coverage, daily check-in calls, and replacement batteries.

Unmonitored: When using an unmonitored alert system, an alert is sent to the pre-programmed emergency contact. This could include family members, friends, or even neighbors. One does not have to pay a monthly fee for this device. Some might enable the patient to talk to their emergency contact, and others might just play a recorded message informing them of the emergency.

In-home device: Usually, an in-home alert system consists of wall buttons, a base station, and a wearable device. In emergencies, the base functions as a microphone and enables the patient to contact a family member or emergency personnel. As the wearable device needs to be near the base, it can be used by seniors who may spend most of their time at home.

Mobile device: These alert systems are often used outside the patient’s house and can either come with pocket-friendly base stations or a wearable device that serves as a built-in microphone and speaker. Additionally, they also have a GPS tracking system that enables family members and emergency personnel to know the patient’s location.

Tips for choosing the best system
Medical alert systems can be easily purchased from a store or even online, but it is important to consider various factors to get the most suitable device. So, here are a few tips to ensure a smooth purchasing process:

Check and compare prices: Usually, the subscription for an alert system can be priced anywhere between $19 to $55 per month. But, some companies offer devices for a yearly fee that can be cheaper when compared with a monthly subscription. Further, some brands charge an additional shipping fee of $10 to $15, an activation fee of nearly $200, and in some cases, an additional upfront fee of up to $200.

Look up company policy and warranty: A few medical alert system brands offer a money-back guarantee and a trial period. However, in some cases, the trial period may extend up to just 30 days, and the buyer may not be reimbursed for the shipping charges and activation fee upon the product’s return. Also, check out the warranty for the alert systems, as some sellers offer warranty coverage for wear and tear. An additional protection plan that covers a one-time replacement of the base station can be offered for a fee. So, consider the seller’s terms and conditions before choosing a suitable product.

Consider personal requirements: Medical alert systems can be either in-home or mobile devices, offering features such as a wearable help button, GPS, fall detection, and even reminders. So, it is important to opt for features that best serve one’s needs. Some key features include device mobility, base unit technology, in-home range, and two-way communication. In addition, one can find systems with crucial features like a lockbox and even activity tracking.

Top medical alert systems
Over the years, medical alert systems have become extremely popular in the country. This technology can offer peace of mind to both the patients and their loved ones because help is just a call away. As selecting the best device requires careful consideration, here are the top picks:

MobileHelp Classic: This alert system comes with many useful features at a minimal cost of $19.95 a month. Its key benefits are long signal ranges, a 30-day money-back guarantee, and free shipping. The alert system also features a waterproof help button. What’s more? It is incredibly easy to install.

Bay Alarm Medical: This is one of the most popular alert systems priced at just $24.95 per month. The brand offers a 30-day trial period with consumer-friendly return and cancellation policies. Customers can choose between a wristband and a necklace, depending on what is more comfortable to wear.