There is a lot that goes into answering this question and some of it may surprise you. If you are even asking the question, the short answer is yes. Ask yourself what are the reasons you are looking into a medical alert system in the first place. Is it for yourself or a loved one? Is the person still independent for the most part, or do they need assistance with daily chores? Are you using a walker, or anything else such as rails to assist with walking? Has there been a history of falls or medical conditions that increases the risk of falling? These are some of the first questions you should ask yourself. For more detailed questions, look over the rest of this post.
The First Assessment
If the person in mind needs assistance with daily chores, we definitely recommend a medical alert. They should have had a medical alert system from the day they started needing assistance. Over the years, there has been a bad connotation associated with medical alert systems. We understand it is a sign that the person is getting to a later stage in their life. However, if they would like to live at home safely and independently, a medical alert system is the proactive solution and a must. But why so much negativity, you may be asking.
Some elderly individuals go as far as calling the medical alert industry a scam. And while there have been scammers masquerading as medical alert salesmen, most companies are looking out for your best interests. Medical alerts are not a scam and have helped millions of elderly individuals stay at home with the protection they need.
Everybody is at risk for an at-home accident, but with elderly individuals, the risk is greater and so are the implications. If an accident happens that is not treated right away, the injuries compound and lead to greater complications down the line and in the worst-case scenario, death. In places like Arizona, New Mexico, Florida, California, and Nevada (of course there are many more states), where the weather hits extreme temperatures in the summer, even a minor injury (especially outside), can lead to dehydration within hours. If a stroke is caused from dehydration and help is not administered, more dehydration sets in which increases the damage and greatly extends the recovery process. With our medical alert systems, the user simply presses a button if they feel unwell and within minutes, help arrives at their home. Even if it is a false alarm and everything is okay, it’s better safe than sorry.
Looking Into Medical Alert System Companies
The first thing you want to make sure of when looking into a medical alert company is that they have qualified monitoring operators. All of our operators are EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) certified which means you are getting paramedic-quality operators. The next thing you should find out is if they require a contract. Often times medical alert companies require contracts so they can sell subscriber accounts. Very shortly, you could be unknowingly changing medical alert companies against your will to an unreliable one. Even if they don’t sell subscriber accounts, you have to ask yourself why they have a contract.
Next, is there a charge for setup or the equipment? You can look below to read about our setup. It takes around 2-5 minutes and to make sure you set it up correctly, the client is required to test the alarm before activation. There are no equipment fees with any of our plans. Next, if there are no setup fees, does the company charge for shipping? Prime Medical Alert provides free priority 2-day shipping to all of our clients. In addition, all of our units include a free lockbox. A lockbox hangs securely over a doorknob and holds a key so that first responders are able to get in without damaging the house by breaking down the door or smashing out a window.
No matter which company you choose, make sure all bracelets and necklaces that come with the medical alert system are water resistant. By water resistant we mean they can work in the shower, while taking a bath, while washing the dishes, gardening, etc. If they are not water resistant, we suggest you look at a different company. When medical alert systems first came out, water resistance was a premium product. Now, the majority of competitors (quality competitors) standardly offer water resistant devices.
The Medical Alert System Signup Process
When signing up for a medical alert system, you don’t need as much information as you might think and the setup is considerably easier than it used to be. Years ago, an installer was needed because the technology was not advanced as it is today. It had to be hard wired and required manual testing every single week and sometimes multiple times a week. This was due to initial reliability, which was not as good as it is now. Currently, all of the tests are automated and the systems come with a built-in backup battery in the event of a power failure. The necklaces and bracelets are checked hourly and the overall system is tested weekly.
The failure rate is virtually non-existent and with all of these backup mechanisms in place, we are able to help seniors live safely and independently. Now back to the signup. When signing up, the only information you need initially is the first and last name of the client using the system, their home address and their home phone number. If you have emergency contact telephone numbers, please be ready to provide them. If not, we send a form with each new order that can be filled out and either faxed, emailed, or mailed back in at your convenience. Additionally, a medical information form comes with each new medical alert system to provide assistance to first responders during an emergency. Another thing to have ready is billing information. Prime Medical Alert is flexible and can either take a credit card or checking account information and bill it on a recurring monthly, quarterly, or yearly basis. We can also send the bill directly to the client if they prefer to mail in a check. The billing method is completely up to you and there are no additional charges for any of the methods.
The Medical Alert System Setup Process
Setting up the medical alert system is much easier than it used to be. When you receive the equipment, you simply plug the power adapter in the power outlet and plug the phone cord into the wall jack. Don’t worry about having room available for another phone because all of our units include a splitter. This means you simply unplug the phone and/or answering machine from the wall jack and plug it into the position that says phone on our unit. You then plug the line position into the jack and you are ready to go. If you do not have a landline or home phone line, let us know and we can get you setup with the no home phone line/no landline medical alert system. Additionally, if you have VoIP service, this isn’t an issue; simply mention it at the time of signup and we can get you the right system.
Once you are done with the setup, press your necklace or bracelet to test the system out. During this first test, our receivers establish the account and the operator will verify your information. After that you are good to go. Since the necklace and bracelet batteries are tested (the batteries in them last approximately 4-5 years), we can let you know when the battery is running low. Once it is running low, we will notify you and send you a new necklace or bracelet. Simply discard the old one.
We are available year round to answer your questions. If there is ever a technical question, or a simple sales one, give us a call. We work with all major phone providers including Verizon, Cox, AT&T, Comcast, etc. As mentioned above, we even work if you don’t have a telephone. Request more information or give us a call and we would be happy to assist you.
Our most basic medical alert system; includes both a bracelet and necklace attachment.
Linear PERS Product Page
A mobile medical alert; speak directly to an operator through the wearable device.
eResponder Product Page