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Convincing An Elderly Parent They Need A Medical Alert System

Monday, August 2nd

Convincing an Elderly Parent They Need a Medical Alert System

One of the hardest things about growing older is admitting that things may not come as easily to you as they once did.

While desiring to maintain one's independence is understandable, adult children of aging parents experience the daily stress that comes with worrying about their parents' safety.

Data released by the Centers for Disease Control indicates that people over the age of 65 are more likely to suffer from falls than their younger counterparts. One in every three people aged 65 or older will fall this year. Another two-thirds of those will suffer from a second fall within six months of the initial occurrence.

Falls, especially in older people who may have weaker bones and joints, can cause significant injury. Therefore, anyone in this age group - particularly those who live alone - should consider purchasing a medical alert system.

Medical alert bracelets and home emergency response systems have existed in some form or another since the early 1950s. As technology improves, so do the offerings for such systems, expanding the ways in which these devices can be used, as well as the response time by medical personnel when they are activated.

There are many emergency alert systems on the market today, and it can be confusing as to which is the best option for your individual needs. All of the ads and promotions found when a website search is conducted for emergency alert systems can be enough to leave a person's head spinning for hours. So what is available and how do these systems work?

Medical alert systems may differ in some respects, but they all work in the same general fashion. When activated - usually by pushing a button on a device you are wearing or through a voice-activated system - they send a signal to an alert monitoring center. It is the job of the people who operate the monitoring center to assess the medical situation, then to call in the appropriate personnel to handle it. If a client requires medical attention, a 911 call will be placed on their behalf and the proper authorities will be dispatched to the scene. Some medical alert systems also will contact a designated friend or family member in the event of an emergency.

Even for adult children who live nearby, it is difficult to monitor aging parents every minute of the day. The effectiveness of medical alert systems makes them a number-one choice for adult children of aging parents, when their parents insist on remaining at home. But getting elderly parents to agree to use one can be a difficult task.

Beginning the conversation early can help to make the transition easier when the time comes. Long before your parents need a medical alert system, discuss with them how one works and the benefits to possessing one. By discussing it when the need is not an immediate one, it will seem less about pressuring one's parents into something they do not want, and more about planning for the future.

If you find yourself in the situation where the need is immediate, then getting elderly loved ones to agree to a medical alert system can be a little trickier. In this instance, a good old case of reverse psychology can be all that is needed to get them to agree to use a medical alert system. Gently encouraging elderly loved ones to use such a device - rather than all-out insisting on it - is a more effective way to accomplish your intended goal.

Sadly, there also are instances where nothing an adult child says or does will convince an elderly parent that it would be in their best interest to have one of these devices. For some people, it takes the unfortunate experience of having an accident to make them realize that a medical alert system isn't such a bad idea after all.

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Medical Alert System FAQ

A medical alert system is often used by seniors who want to "age in place" rather than move to an independent/assisted living facility. Using a button on a pendant or wrist strap, they can let loved ones and/or emergency responders know that they need help due to a fall or medical situation.
Most systems on the market include a wearable panic button and round-the-clock remote monitoring. You can choose a plan that covers in-home use only or one that includes coverage when the wearer is out and about.
That depends on the person using the system and what kind of help they might need. Some medical alert systems include automatic fall detection, GPS tracking, and even smartwatch features like heart rate monitoring and tracking health goals.
Pricing varies, but you can anticipate monthly service fees ranging from $19.95 to $56.95 - the higher your coverage, the more you'll pay per month. You'll also need to factor in equipment costs: some service providers let you choose between buying it outright (lower monthly fees) and renting it (higher monthly fees).
Unfortunately, you won't get coverage for a medical alert system through Original Medicare or Medicaid. But, if you have a supplemental insurance plan, you might be able to get a discount. Check with your carrier if this applies to you.
The majority of medical alert systems come with a 30-day trial or money-back guarantee. However, with respect to the equipment, you'll want to read the fine print to understand your provider's terms if something goes wrong with your panic button or with any other devices down the line.
Yes. Very few medical alert providers lock you into a long-term contract. Most often, you'll get a prorated refund for any prepaid months of coverage once you return rented equipment. Plus, you have that initial trial period of 15-30 days that's offered by most medical alert services.
Your best bet is to see what other customers have to say. Look for reviews, preferably on third-party sites not affiliated with the provider. Another great resource is the Better Business Bureau: an "A+" rating and accreditation are good signs that you or your loved one will be well-protected by a particular medical alert service.

Compare Medical Alert Systems

Select any 2 Medical Alert Systems to compare them head to head

best-medical-alert-systems
  • Medical Guardian
  • Bay Alarm Medical
  • Mobile Help
  • Life Fone
  • Philips Lifeline
  • Life Station
  • Rescue Alert
  • ADT
  • Life Alert
  • Alert 1
  • Response Link
Medical Guardian vs Bay Alarm Medical Medical Guardian vs Mobile Help Medical Guardian vs Life Fone Medical Guardian vs Philips Lifeline Medical Guardian vs Life Station Medical Guardian vs Rescue Alert Medical Guardian vs ADT Medical Guardian vs Life Alert Medical Guardian vs Alert 1 Medical Guardian vs Response Link Bay Alarm Medical vs Mobile Help Bay Alarm Medical vs Life Fone Bay Alarm Medical vs Philips Lifeline Bay Alarm Medical vs Life Station Bay Alarm Medical vs Rescue Alert Bay Alarm Medical vs ADT Bay Alarm Medical vs Life Alert Bay Alarm Medical vs Alert 1 Bay Alarm Medical vs Response Link Mobile Help vs Life Fone Mobile Help vs Philips Lifeline Mobile Help vs Life Station Mobile Help vs Rescue Alert Mobile Help vs ADT Mobile Help vs Life Alert Mobile Help vs Alert 1 Mobile Help vs Response Link Life Fone vs Philips Lifeline Life Fone vs Life Station Life Fone vs Rescue Alert Life Fone vs ADT Life Fone vs Life Alert Life Fone vs Alert 1 Life Fone vs Response Link Philips Lifeline vs Life Station Philips Lifeline vs Rescue Alert Philips Lifeline vs ADT Philips Lifeline vs Life Alert Philips Lifeline vs Alert 1 Philips Lifeline vs Response Link Life Station vs Rescue Alert Life Station vs ADT Life Station vs Life Alert Life Station vs Alert 1 Life Station vs Response Link Rescue Alert vs ADT Rescue Alert vs Life Alert Rescue Alert vs Alert 1 Rescue Alert vs Response Link ADT vs Life Alert ADT vs Alert 1 ADT vs Response Link Life Alert vs Alert 1 Life Alert vs Response Link Alert 1 vs Response Link
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