Medical Alert Systems Comparison Table (Pricing & Features)
Taking care of one’s health is not easy. That is why all of their specs should be taken into account. Below goes a table to compare all the companies so that users get to choose with clear data.
|Provider||Total Score||Price/mo||BBB Rating||DIY instal||Trial Period||Warranty||Secure Score||Type of connection||Fall Detection||Money-back guarantee||In-home range||Battery||GPS||Network provider||Access to the Cloud||Weather Resistant|
|1. ADT||9.6/10||$29.99||A+||YES||6 months||Lifetime||$7.30||Landline & Cellular||$10/mo||6-Month||Up to 600 Feet||Up to 30 hours||Yes||AT&T||Yes||Yes|
|2. Bay Alarm Medical||9.6/10||$19.95||A+||YES||30 days||Lifetime||$9||Landline & Cellular||$10/mo||30-Day||Up to 1,000 feet||Up to 32 hours||Yes||AT&T 4G LTE||Yes||Yes|
|3. Mobile Help||9.3/10||$19.95||A+||YES||NO||Lifetime||$8||Landline & Cellular||$10/mo||30-Day||Up to 600 Feet||Up to 30 hours||Yes||AT&T||No||Yes|
|4. Medical Guardian||8.9/10||$29.95||A+||YES||30 days||Lifetime||$8||Landline & Cellular||$10/mo||None||Up to 1,300 Feet||Up to 32 hours||Yes||AT&T||No||Yes|
|5. Great Call||8.7/10||$14.99||A+||YES||30 days||One year||$8||Cellular||Included||30-Day||Not specified||Up to 24 hours||Yes||AT&T||No||Yes|
|6. LifeStation||8.7/10||$19.95||A+||YES||30 days||None||$8||Landline & Cellular||$7/mo||30-Day||Up to 500 Feet||Up to 32-hours||Yes||AT&T||Yes||Yes|
|7. LifeFone||8.4/10||$24.95||A+||YES||30 days||Lifetime||$7.80||Landline & Cellular||$5/mo||30-Day||Up to 1,300 Feet||Up to 42 hours||Yes||AT&T||Yes||Yes|
|8. Life Alert||8.1/10||$49.95||A+||YES||NO||Lifetime||$7||Landline & Cellular||Not included||Not included||Up to 800 Feet||Don’t need charging, up to 7-10 years||Yes||AT&T||Yes||Yes|
|9. Philips Lifeline||8.1/10||$29.95||A+||YES||30 days||One year||$8||Landline & Cellular||Included||30-Day||Up to 800 Feet||Up to 30 hours||Yes||AT&T||Yes||Yes|
|10. Medical Alert||8.0/10||$19.95||A+||YES||30 days||Lifetime||$8||Landline & Cellular||$10/mo||30-Day||Up to 600 Feet||Up to 30 hours||Yes||AT&T||Yes||Yes|
What is a Medical Alert System?
A medical alert system is a personal emergency response system. It is in charge of giving fast help during emergencies. It is more popular among seniors. Yet, the pros highly recommend it to all people who live alone or have some health condition. They should get the best products that suit their needs.
The best medical alert systems should include two-way communication. This makes them more effective. They should make the house a safe place for seniors to live in. This way, they don’t have to go to a nursing home too soon. Finally, a good emergency company should provide portable devices.
24-hour Emergency Response Services
A good medical alert system should have full monitoring. The devices can send emergency signals in different ways. It can be physical, with vocal commands, or with sensor activation. It should call out for help as soon as there’s a problem detected.
This feature is essential for seniors who have mobility problems. Falls are generally the first reason for in-home injuries. And the elderly are at a higher risk than the rest of the population. This device is normally for free. However, some companies may charge up to $20 for it.
Two-Way Talk Featur
Most medical alert systems have speakers with two-way sound. This allows users to talk instantly with the monitoring center. This way, they can talk about their specific needs. Some devices lack this function. Instead, they include a panic button. This means they can send a message, but not offer info about the problem.
This feature is generally a must in medical alert systems. It is best for those who want a portable gadget. It also offers remote location service. This is crucial for people who have Alzheimer's. They might get lost, so this gadget helps others to find them.
Long Distance Coverage
This depends on the type of products users have. For an in-home one, they don’t need a great distance range. But for active users, it may be more useful. This way, they won’t be stuck in their houses. So, seniors should consider devices that work with a cellular connection.
Resistance to Water
Waterproof and water-resistant are not the same. The second one resists only a small amount of water. So be careful when buying a device. This is essential to consider for those who live in moist areas. Or if seniors plan to install the gadget outdoors.
Most medical alert systems are easy to install and use. They usually have DIY setups. This means users can set the devices up on their own. They just have to follow some simple steps. In any case, they can also receive online or phone support.
This a good feature for two people who live together. This means both occupants can benefit from the same emergency medical alert system. Some firms include the coverage within a certain plan. Some other companies charge a small fee.
Automatic Check Out
This is quite a new popular feature in the industry. It generally works with apps on smart devices, like cell phones or tablets. This type of testing checks things on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. The system makes sure everything works out well.
Lockboxes To Get In
A lockbox is a place to keep the entrance key. Emergency staff can open the door if no one inside can’t do it. The system is very simple. First, the person activates the alert. Second, the service notifies EMS. Finally, responders spot the location and give help. With this feature, they can break into the house without causing damage.
No Need To Carry Devices
Wall buttons are like normal watches that seniors wear. The only difference is that these go on the walls. Users should place them in high-risk areas. Examples include the kitchen, the bathroom, and the stairs. It is very convenient for seniors who don’t like carrying medical alert pendants with them.
Customer Service In Multiple Languages
This is extremely important for non-English speaker users. Seniors should make sure the company can give good translation services. Users should be able to speak in the language they feel more comfortable with. This way, the company can guarantee good service.
Types of Systems
The two main types of medical alert systems are in-home and mobile. The first one is best for those who stay most time inside their houses. The second one comes in many styles. For example, people can use them as a medical alert bracelet, pendant, or watch.
1. Landline System or Cellular System
There is an important difference between systems with landline and cellular connections. The second one allows users to move freely. This means they don’t have to remain in their houses. Below goes a description of the pros and cons of each type.
This type of system is connected to the phone line. This means it isn’t wireless. The landline option is great for rural areas. Bad weather or power outages won’t affect it. Yet, the lines are more at risk of being cut. Most people choose it because it’s cheaper.
- Cheap price
- Resists bad weather
- Power outages don’t affect it
- Reaches rural areas
- Vulnerable lines
- Used only at home
- Doesn’t allow mobility
The cellular option is wireless. It doesn’t need any additional connections. This means there are no lines that can be cut. They are also portable and easy to move around. This allows users to go to different places and still be protected. The only problem is that it may suffer disruptions during bad weather conditions.
- More freedom of movement
- Greater coverage
- Portable and Practical
- Innovative: new technology
- Outdoor protection
- May not reach rural areas
- More likely to be affected by weather conditions
2. Contracts or No Contracts
The type of contract varies among companies. Some require long ones, while some don’t. Many firms offer low-price, no-contract, or month-to-month options. Clients should always look for user-friendly contracts. For example, those who have a money-back guarantee or free activation.
3. Waterproof or Water-Resistant Devices
Waterproof and water-resistant devices are not the same. Users should bear this in mind. Depending on their needs, buyers should check which option is better for their houses. Below goes a detailed description to learn about the main differences.
Users can submerge waterproof things under the water without worries. For example, seniors can use them in the shower or other wet places. The gadget will continue to work in a good way.
- Resists the water
- Does not break with ease
- Protects the person even in the shower
- People can wear it under the rain
- Adds weight to the product
On the other hand, this type of device can only resist water. This means users can’t submerge it. For this reason, it is not good to use them in the shower.
- More convenient
- Usable in humidity
- Resists bad weather
- Durable in time
- Not as pricey as other types of products
- Not entirely protected
- Adds value for money
4. Home or Portable
An alert device can get to the monitoring center in different ways. It can be with landline, wireless, or cellular connection. First, users need to choose the type of system they want. They should decide between in-home or portable gadgets.
Here goes a list of the different ways these types of devices get to the monitoring center. The best one depends on the users’ needs.
With this system, the device reaches the monitoring center via phone line. Some companies need a dedicated line to get the service. This is the best option for those who always stay inside.
Wireless devices connect to the monitoring center through a Wi-Fi connection. Sometimes, this option is backed up by cellular connectivity. This is useful if the internet goes down.
This option is also wireless. It uses a cell tower signal to get to the monitoring center. This is the best option for active users. They don’t need to remain inside to feel protected.
Portable systems are very practical and effective. Read the list below about the different types and their features.
Medical alert bracelets are used just like a normal one. Some of them feature two-way communication. Some others only include a help button to send a ping to the one who needs it.
Necklaces & Pendants
People wear medical alert systems like any other necklace. They come in different styles and colors for both men and women. They also have the same distinction as the bracelets.
These devices look like any other regular watch. Some feature many smart functions like reminders or trackers. Users can also pair them with cell phones. They may also have two-way communication or a help button.
Who Uses This Type of Systems?
Grandparents are always there for anyone. So, they deserve the best to live safely in their households. For this reason, they should get a quality system for their houses. Thanks to their innovative features, seniors will feel protected at any time.
1. Seniors at Home
Generally, seniors are used to living alone. They may have already lost their partners, for example. Or in other cases, their families don’t visit them so often. Yet, they enjoy their independence. But when they are alone, it is more difficult to ask for help in emergencies.
2. Those Who Have Just Retired
These people usually are alone too much time inside their houses. In some cases, they go outside very little, so their mobility is at risk. In other cases, they find it hard to adapt to their new lives without work. When this happens, they may force themselves to do something. And they end up with injuries.
3. People Who Suffer From Epilepsy
These people need lots of help to control their condition. Some of them respond very well to medication. But some others, especially children and elders, take more time to adapt. People need to look after them until they find good treatment. And this usually takes a long time.
4. Patients with Diabetes
Diabetes is also a difficult disorder to control. Some people can fall into comas or have seizures. This happens when their blood sugar is higher than the normal range. In those cases, they might not be able to dial 911 to ask for help.
5. People with Alzheimer’s Disease
Alzheimer’s disease is a thing these days. There is almost a 60 percent chance that people who suffer from it will wander at one point. This can bring bad consequences. This happens in particular when they don’t remember who they are or where they live. For these patients, it is important to carry a medical alert system with them.
6. Those Who Look After the Elderly
Sometimes caregivers take care of seniors in their homes. Aging parents or elder who are ill want to get help. Yet, it is difficult at times to be after them all the time. So, it is quite a relief for health workers to be backed up by home devices.
How to Choose the Right Medical Device
Choosing the right package can be a difficult task. The best one will depend on the client’s needs. Here there is a list with 5 steps to follow before getting a new device.
1. A Price That Fits the Budget
Generally, medical alert systems with GPS cost around 20 or 40$ per month. This price is the most common one for traditional in-home plans. The ones with the cellular connection may cost a bit more. All in all, most of the offers in this selection fits this range of prices.
2. User-Friendly Policies
Be careful with long-term contracts. In some cases, clients get stuck in a three-year-long contract. So, they can not cancel the service if they don’t like it or need it. In this list, all companies offer easy cancellation policies. Some also include free monthly trials.
3. Work As Promised or Better
Generally, this type of product works only “good enough”. Yet, seniors, at this stage in their lives, deserve more than that. The devices included should be of high quality. All of their functions should be as the ones mentioned before. In the list, all brands offer high standard services.
4. Clients’ Reviews
Reading the client’s comments is very useful. It helps to check out the quality of the products. These users give their opinion based on what they went through. Just go read them and come up with some general ideas. People can find them on any web with medical alert system reviews.
5. Customer Support
It is very important to count on good customer care. Users should be able to call at any time to ask for help. The staff should also treat them kindly. Language is also a crucial aspect. The workers at the monitoring center have to speak the same language as the client. It’s a good thing, then that most companies offer multilingual services today.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Any of These Systems Covered by Medicare?
No, these medical alert systems are not covered by Medicare. The company does not consider these devices as a necessity. Of course, seniors are against that. But, it is a thing that still won’t change. It is crucial to mention, though, that Medicare Part C does cover some alerts. But this depends on many factors. For example, the type of insurance and the state where clients live. So, always ask the provider about this aspect. Also, some healthcare accounts cover these kinds of gadgets.
What Is the Best Rated for Seniors?
MobileHelp is the leader within the industry. It makes its equipment, which results in high-quality products. It is also one of the companies that created new devices. One of them is a nice medical alert watch. The set-up process is very simple and fast. Moreover, clients don’t need a landline for connection. The firm also offers Duo. It is a package that covers two people for the price of one. It is a perfect option for couples.
What Is the Monthly Fee for Life Alert?
Life Alert monthly costs range from $95 to $198. This depends on the type of equipment chosen. The service includes installation (professional or DIY). It also has activation charges and programming. The price for monitoring goes from $49.95 to $89.95 per month. Also, this vendor makes a long term contract of three years. This can be a drawback if users want to cancel the registration. Looking for services with clear policies is also a nice idea. It is better to make cancellations.
Does Life Alert Really Save a Life Every 11 Minutes?
Life alert says they do so on their website. They explain that they save at least one life from a potential catastrophic outcome every 11 minutes. But, users should read this carefully. There is a longer definition included that explains the meaning of “catastrophic outcome”. In other words, this information is not 100% true.
Are There Any Free Devices?
Yes, there are some ways to get a free medical alert system. One option is with the LifeLine federal government program. Users with low incomes can get benefits. Also, some private health insurance covers the costs of these types of devices. Others will give back only a part of the price. In the case of the veteran, they check out the VA. They might get a free phone dialer.
Protect Your Health Today
Choosing the right medical alert system can be a bit hard. So, this article should help buyers when choosing what to purchase. This guide shows reliable medical alert reviews and comments online. This selection was quite strict. It has covered all the crucial points: devices, costs, pros and cons, main features, and more. Use the advice to choose the perfect product.