Best Medical Alert Systems With No Monthly Fee of 2021 (Pricing & Features)
Below is a review of the nine providers, including their prices and key functions.
Monitored Vs. No Monthly Fee
Something to remember about no monthly fee medical alert systems is that they don’t come with monitoring services. This is fine for some people, but others may need that 911 response or access to a call center. Here’s a brief overview of the two options to help families decide.
A monitored system usually comes with a higher price tag, but it can also include more one-on-one assistance. For instance, lonely seniors may be able to dial the call center just to chat. Sometimes, they can receive health advice over the phone, too.
- 911 is the first contact
- Get help from a professional sooner
- Often provide advice over the phone
- Sometimes offer prescription refills services
- Takes the pressure off of the family
- Caregivers may feel less involved
- Pricier option
No Monthly Fee
No monthly fee medical alert systems typically have a list of pre-programmed contacts who can help in case there’s a crisis. These devices may also connect the elderly individual with a 911 call center if necessary.
- A great secondary option for healthier seniors
- Attractive pricing
- Makes a caregiver's job easier
- Pre-programmed list of familiar contacts
- Reduces unnecessary calls to healthcare providers
- Accesses an emergency call center as a last resort
- Requires nearby family/caregivers
How Does a No-Monthly-Fee System Work?
A medical alert system is more of an umbrella term and can refer to buttons, pendants, and phones. These devices usually offer two-way communication between call centers, the police, caregivers, and the elderly at home. Below are four ways that these services work.
1. Automated Dialer Telephone
Those who prefer a more traditional set-up can try an auto-dial phone. The user simply pushes a button on their pendant or bracelet to connect with their ICE (in case of emergency) contact.
2. Mobile Help Button
Wireless alarms can connect via the home's WiFi and access the senior's ICE contact list or the police department. Whether through an app or the mobile phone itself, elderly individuals can push a button if they require injury assistance.
3. WiFi or Internet-Based Systems
More models in 2021 are using WiFi and the Internet to help family members keep in touch with aging relatives at home. With everyone on the cellular network, it's easier to call or text each other in case there's a crisis.
4. In-Home Pager Systems
Perhaps a more outdated option, an in-home pager, is great for seniors who have a caregiver or family member who's usually in the same or nearby location. When they need assistance, the elderly can push a keypad on their pendant to ring the caretaker's pager.
Features & Things to Consider
To find the right medical alert system, consumers should consider a few key functionalities. Besides cost, there are questions about the call range of the equipment, how easy it is to use, fall detection, and more.
Individual preferences will vary depending on whether they live at home or not, as well as how tech-savvy they are.
1. Contacts List
Many types of ICE equipment come with a list of people that the elderly can speak to if something comes up. Depending on the provider, individuals may be able to program in their caretakers, doctors, and relatives. Alternatively, the list may be pre-programmed to include the police and fire departments, pharmacies, and other health professionals.
2. Easy Set-Up
Seniors often have trouble setting up technology, so an ER bracelet or pendant system should be as uncomplicated as possible. Fortunately, there are different options to choose from, such as mobile apps and phones, pagers, and base stations.
Since this type of equipment usually comes with a base station, it's important to look at the range limit. If the user is not within the connectivity radius, then their call to family members or the police may not go through.
4. Two-Way Communication
Most products today come with two-way talk so that seniors can speak to the person they're calling straight from their bracelet, pendant, or mobile. This is crucial for those who are prone to trips and falls because they might not make it to the base station in time.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is There a Monthly Fee for Life Alert?
Yes, the company does charge a fee each month, but it varies depending on which plan one chooses. For instance, it could be anywhere from $49.95 to $89.85 per month.
That said, this provider is well known in the ER response industry for seniors and has been in the business since 1987.
What is the Cost of Medical Alert Systems?
It depends. As this review shows, there are several options, and they each come with a different price tag. To give a general idea, most equipment of this type charges between $29.95 and $89.95 per month.
That doesn’t include any start-up fees or activations, which typically range from $0 to $95. Finally, accessories or installation could be an extra $100 or $200.
What is the Cheapest Life Alert System?
The least expensive plan from that provider is $49.95, plus any activation fees. It includes the basic equipment that seniors require, as well as an optional mobile app for added protection.
Off-brand or knockoff pendants may have no month-to-month payments but ask for an upfront price of a couple of hundred dollars.
Are Medical Alerts With No Monthly Fee Reliable?
Yes. Consumers can look up each provider on their own to see ratings, reviews, and contact information for further assistance. To make this list, each business had to offer reliable service and access to trained professionals as well as local authorities.
Plus, our team looked for companies that had client reviews and testimonials to ensure that shoppers were happy with their purchases.
Who Should Use a Medical Alert System?
In general, those who are over the age of 65 are at a greater risk of household injuries from things like tripping over objects or slipping in the shower. As people get older, they become more fragile, their eyesight worsens, and they might have health conditions that further complicate things.
An older person who has issues getting around and/or has a serious health diagnosis should consider one of these products.
Keep Your Freedom & Stay at Home With a 911 Button or Device
Keep in mind that not every senior citizen requires this type of equipment. Everyone is unique, and as such, will have challenges to consider. Some people reach their 60s, 70s, and 80s and exhibit great health.
Others have ailments or trouble getting around and could benefit from an ER response pendant. If that’s the case, take a good look at these product reviews to determine which is the way to go.