Medical alert systems have come a long way over the years. Although their features haven’t changed much, these systems have improved remarkably in terms of reliability and performance. The main medical alert devices include products from companies like Walgreens Ready Response, Lifestation, ADT Companion Service and Bay Alarm Medical.
The devices mentioned above are highly specialised and focus on a system referred to as ‘telemedicine’. These products are also capable of monitoring health status using ECG, blood-pressure, glucometer and Weight Scale devices. Although they’re expensive, these products boast of possessing remarkably new technology.
When you are shopping for a medical alert device for the first time, it’s very common to get confused with the wide assortment of products in the market. Fortunately, there are a number of fundamental features that apply in almost every situation and this is what you’ll want to focus on.
Here are four features to look for in a medical alert device
Some companies also refer to it as inactivity monitoring. Basically, the purpose of the feature is to ensure that your loved one is moving around each day by checking on them every 10 hours or so. In the case they are not, you are going to know more and have them checked on. Activity monitoring is done through different ways, one of them is by using door and motion detectors to sensor movements made by the patients throughout the day. Another one requires your loved one to press a button after a reminder by the device. The latter would probably be annoyingly too much work for your loved one and wouldn’t be highly recommended.
Water resistant medical systems
Having a base unit that is waterproof is probably one of the most important features in this list. Falls are bound to happen to patients above 65 years of age and most of them happen in the bathroom. It is very essential that the device can be effective when it is most needed. Which means you can wear it 24/7 most importantly when you are in the shower. Some products come with a ‘water- resistant’ without the ‘waterproof’ feature. So make sure that yours is water- proof and will not have your loved ones worrying that they might make it wet in the shower; these are likely places for a fall.
Discreet and attractive wearables
The stigma around medical alert devices is quite high and many seniors push back against wearing the devices. The last thing these people want is someone to know they might need help at any time. Medical alert companies are therefore embracing this fact and producing more devices that don’t really look like medical devices. The most advanced ones have changeables faceplates to match your outfit. Companies today have devices that look more like bracelets, watches and necklaces but really give the assistance needed in case of an emergency. It’s a pretty safe situation. These fashionable devices are meant to encourage those patients who struggle having one to wear them.
Automatic fall detection
This feature is for cases where the patient falls and gets trapped or can’t get up due to injury or weakness. For this reason, devices that can automatically detect a fall and summon for help without the patient doing anything are much needed. Fall detectors are a newer feature in these devices but are quickly becoming a must-have. Most injuries are not incapacitating but there are some that are. There is therefore no use of a detector if the person wearing it is unconscious or so injured that they can not get help. The fall detection feature has an accuracy of up to 95% according to the system manufacturer.
As our parents and loved ones age, it is natural to feel a bit worried about their safety. The thought of them being alone with no one to help in case of an accident is reason enough to cause anxiety. Medical alert systems are a great way to ease these worries. Among other features mentioned above include a long battery life, 24 hour live assistance, GPS detection, an easy-use device, sufficient range of signals and a risk free trial. Do your research: you can learn more at Timesunion.com. The most important thing is to keep it simple. Do not get more than what you need. As a rule of thumb, get what is most important to you. Think about your loved ones’ needs and why you are getting the device to make it easier to decide.
Ellen Diamond did her degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh. She is interested in mental health, wellness, and lifestyle.