When Should You Get a Medical Alert Bracelet?

The right medical alert system can be invaluable, but deciding whether to get a medical alert device can be difficult. Seniors aged 65 and older, people who live or work alone and those with disabilities or chronic medical conditions should consider getting a medical alert bracelet. This guide includes examples of who can benefit from having a personal emergency response system as well as links to several top-rated medical alert bracelets and devices.

Aged 65 or Older

Seniors are at an increased risk of falling, and falls are the leading cause of serious injury and death among those aged 65 and older. Each year, one in four American seniors suffers from a fall, and falling once increases the chances of suffering another fall.

While a medical alert bracelet can’t prevent falls, it can ensure a rapid response from first responders. As with any type of trauma, getting medical assistance as soon as possible following a fall can dramatically improve outcomes and reduce health care costs.

Older adults may want to consider a medical alert system with optional automatic fall detection, such as the MobileHelp Solo, Philips Lifeline GoSafe2 or Medical Guardian Freedom Guardian.

Work or Live Alone

For people who live or work alone, a medical alert bracelet or personal emergency response system could be ideal. Small and discrete, wearable panic buttons can be activated quickly and discreetly, and many devices come equipped with long-lasting batteries that never need recharging.

Medical alert bracelets and systems are widely used by lone workers, people who live by themselves and even those who have ongoing concerns about their personal safety, such as domestic abuse victims.

There’s now a number of medical alert systems geared toward a broad range of users, including commuters, new drivers and athletes. Bay Alarm Medical offers an innovative in-vehicle medical alert with automatic crash detection, geofencing and a speakerphone, while Medical Guardian’s Freedom Guardian medical alert smartwatch combines all the features of a medical alert bracelet with a modern, high-tech watch.

Live With a Disability or Health Condition

Having a disability, illness or chronic disease can increase the risk of experiencing a medical emergency. Wearing a medical alert bracelet means the wearer will always be able to call for assistance, even if they can’t dial a phone.

Many medical alert companies let subscribers create a list of caregivers, family members and neighbors who medical alert operators will contact before emergency services are dispatched. This feature is ideal for those who might require urgent nonmedical assistance and may be reluctant to use a medical alert bracelet that only allows them to call the police, the fire department or an ambulance.