Many disabled seniors live independently in modified homes, using mobility and accessibility aids to maintain a good quality of life. Thanks to these amendments, seniors can usually successfully carry out the activities of daily living and enjoy a life that doesn’t feel too limited. However, when things go wrong, the consequences can be serious. If a senior falls out of a wheelchair, they may suffer a broken bone or fracture. Such injuries must be treated promptly for the best chances of recovery and to reduce the risk of complications.
Seniors who live alone may find themselves unable to call for aid after an injury, and the delay in seeking treatment could be costly. Medical alert systems offer disabled seniors an extra level of safety and peace of mind by allowing them to contact a monitoring center at any time of the day or night simply by pressing a button. Most medical alert systems have a wearable pendant or wristband that allows users to communicate with the monitoring center. Some of the best medical alert systems have extra features, such as voice-activated wall buttons, automatic fall detection pendants or motion detectors, that add an extra layer of safety and security for seniors who are at greater risk of falling.
In this breakdown, we list some of the best medical alert devices for seniors with reduced mobility or who are likely to need more sophisticated monitoring. All of these systems are made by established brands and should help seniors feel safer in their homes.
Medical Alert Systems to Consider for Disabled Seniors
Medical Guardian: Best for High-Tech Monitoring
Medical Guardian‘s medical alert systems are a good choice for disabled seniors who feel the need for more advanced monitoring systems. The monthly fees charged by Medical Guardian are higher than average; however, the company offers some of the most comprehensive features, including PIN-protected lockboxes to let emergency responders access the property quickly in the event of an accident, voice-activated wall buttons, motion sensors and optional fall detection pendants.
Tech-savvy seniors may appreciate Medical Guardian’s smartwatch-style alert device, as well as the apps it makes available for approved caregivers to check-in on the well-being of the device user. The watch offers voice-to-tech SMS messaging, GPS tracking and a number of other useful features for those who are more mobile. People who prefer something easier to use can opt for a simpler button-style communication tool. The voice-activated wall buttons serve as a backup when the senior forgets to wear their alert button.
Medical Guardian is far from the cheapest provider of medical alert devices, with the base plans ranging from $29.95 to $79.95 before adding any optional extras. However, many families are happy to pay extra for its comprehensive monitoring service. It’s hard to find another provider that offers all of the above features for a still fairly affordable fee.
MobileHelp: Best for Low Prices
MobileHelp is one of the lowest-cost providers in the world of monitored medical alert devices. Its most basic in-home plan starts at just $19.95 per month for in-home monitoring without fall detection. The company even provides a free PIN-protected lockbox as a part of its service.
MobileHelp’s products are more basic than those from Medical Guardian, but a smartwatch-style wearable is available. The company offers fall detection and medication scheduling as optional add-ons, along with some interesting extras on higher-end products, including weather forecasting, games and access to the Amwell telehealth service via the MobileHelp plus device.
Monitoring services are provided by the U.S.-based medical alert company Raid Response, which has a good reputation. This makes it easy to recommend MobileHelp for seniors who are on a budget but want a monitoring service they can depend on.
Bay Alarm Medical: Caregiver Tracking and Car Monitoring
Bay Alarm Medical is another low-cost medical alert system provider. Monthly fees start at $19.95 for their in-home monitoring system, with the GPS system costing $24.95 per month. Users who purchase a bundle of the in-home and GPS device receive a discount on the combined monthly fees.
Bay Alarm Medical’s caregiver portal is its standout feature and is superior to those of most rival brands at the budget price point. In addition to allowing caregivers to log in and see where their loved ones are, the caregiver can set up geofencing on the map and receive an alert if the device wearer leaves a predefined area. This feature is useful for seniors with memory issues or who are prone to wandering.
Another useful feature is the in-car alert system with GPS monitoring and crash detection. This device plugs into the car’s cigarette lighter and can be left plugged in permanently. Disabled seniors who rely on their car to get around may find this feature particularly useful.
Choosing a Medical Alert System
All of the above providers offer good-quality products. Overall, Medical Guardian is the best option for disabled seniors who are housebound or at increased risk of falling and feel they may need a more comprehensive monitoring solution. Bay Alarm Medical’s in-car system is a good choice for disabled older adults who rely on their car to get around. MobileHelp’s offerings are the best choice for seniors on a budget who would be happy with basic monitoring services and fall detection. The above providers have a range of contract terms and options, giving families some level of flexibility when it comes to trying services in the short term.