Can anyone recommend a good medical alert system?
February 28, 2011 11:40 AM   Subscribe

Can anyone recommend a good medical alert system?

I found a few older responses on MeFi, but since companies are always changing, I thought I'd a ask again.

My elderly mother has a medical alert system already, but she tells me the people who work there are very rude, so I’d like to find a new one for her.

The problem is that there seem to be hundreds of companies that do this, but zero websites where people rate or discuss them.

Any Mefi-ers have any personal experience with these places or know some one who uses one and is happy with the service?

My mom and I both thank you all.
posted by freakazoid to Health & Fitness (8 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
To clarify: you're asking about a company that could be reached through an emergency button or something similar, right? Or are you asking about a service like Medic Alert with information bracelets and a number EMTs can call to get your medical records?
posted by phunniemee at 11:44 AM on February 28, 2011

Emergency button, yes exactly.

Sorry if it wasn't clear.
posted by freakazoid at 11:51 AM on February 28, 2011

Elderly relative uses the Walgreen model. Real life person helped set it up, and the one time it went off by accident they got in touch all but instantly

Google for various reviews, though.
posted by IndigoJones at 11:59 AM on February 28, 2011

I insisted that my mom get lifealert if she wanted to contnue living by herself. It's like $30 per month. The operators seem professional and concerned. They ship UPS, it's like installing an answering machine.

We also got my mom a real estate style key safe. If she falls and can't get up (heh) the Lifealert operator has the combo to the key safe which s/he will give to the police/EMT.
posted by fixedgear at 12:25 PM on February 28, 2011

Lifealert was what my family used as well; we liked it well enough. If my father pressed the button, it would call the house phone (in case someone was home but couldn't hear him) and, if no one answered, emergency services. My tech unsavy mother was able to install.
posted by quadrilaterals at 12:54 PM on February 28, 2011

We use Lifeline for my mother-in-law. Every operator I've had contact with (they test on a schedule to make sure everything works) has been very nice.
posted by crankylex at 4:35 PM on February 28, 2011

I did a lot of research and found that the same basic life alert tech is sold under many different company names. We wound up going with Philips LifeLine, and they did a good job - a local rep came out and installed the system for us (though it's as simple as hooking up a telephone and plugging the machine in). I also liked that it came with a pendant or watch style of button, that they don't charge for "false alarms", and that they were always quick and competent. I can also recommend fixedgear's idea of using the real estate key safe so that paramedics can easily get inside without breaking a window.

When we no longer needed it, they sent a shipping-paid UPS box to return the unit, and before that our rep was great about putting the account on hold when my mom wasn't living at home.

Philips also offers a medication reminder/dispenser that looks pretty good.
posted by truenorth at 11:03 PM on February 28, 2011

I can second the recommendation for Philips Lifeline - my mom has used it only once, but it worked just as advertised. She insists that she doesn't need it, but I shudder to think about something happening and she didn't have it.
posted by DandyRandy at 3:27 PM on March 1, 2011

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