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There’s a lot of competition out there. If you need a new pair of pants or a new blender, for example, you have hundreds of choices. Chances are, you’ll do a little homework to find the pair with the right fit or the kitchen appliance at the best price. If your purchase doesn’t work out the way you want because the jeans don’t fit like they should or the blender broke after just a few uses, your safety isn’t compromised. It’s a mere annoyance, even if it’s a costly one.

That’s definitely not the case when it comes to medical alert systems.

Seniors are a growing demographic, with a projected 92 million seniors predicted to be alive in 2060. Add that startling statistic to the fact that nearly one third of older adults live alone, and it’s easy to see why medical alert systems are so hot right now.

New medical alert systems come on the market all the time. That can be a good thing. The more systems there are, the more they encourage each other to be better in an effort to get the most customers. Unfortunately, they are not all up to par.

Choosing the right system, or the wrong system, can literally mean the difference between life and death. We know that sounds dramatic, but we wouldn’t say it if it wasn’t true.

A medical alert system that malfunctions during a fall, or a call center representative who isn’t properly trained to provide emergency services in seconds, could mean you or a loved one is left stranded on the floor for hours, or even days, with no sign of help.

Few products or services have as big of an impact on your health and safety as a medical alert system, which is why it’s worth putting in more time and effort to do an adequate amount of research than you would any other product.

Where you do your research matters

So, where do you get started? Do you simply conduct a Google search and view the top three products that show up? Do you look at the ones with the most customers? With the most years in business?

Those are fine places to start, but you haven’t done your duty if you haven’t visited a thorough review site. InHomeSafetyGuideSafetyGuide is one of the best.

For example, Life Alert has been around for over 30 years, but it isn’t a system we would recommend, regardless of their years in business. Without the help of InHomeSafetyGuideSafetyGuide, you may be lured into purchasing one of their systems because they’re the most well-known, without realizing that they also offer one of the smallest coverage ranges of any medical alert system.

When it comes to review websites, who you choose matters too. There are many sites out there that claim to provide accurate, thorough reviews, but they’re nothing more than an advertisement for companies that pay to have their systems reviewed.

At InHomeSafetyGuideSafetyGuide, we review our systems first. Then, we reach out to those companies to provide you with the best deals—not the other way around. It’s true that we miss out on some revenue this way, but it ensures that we are accountable to you and your family. Your safety is our number one priority, which means we only recommend systems that we would buy for our own treasured loved ones.

Comprehensive buying support from InHomeSafetyGuide

At InHomeSafetyGuide, we provide detailed reviews of the top medical alert systems, but we go beyond simply telling you about their features. We want to make you an informed shopper who feels confident in their purchase. That means providing you with a buyer’s guide.

If you’re truly getting started for the first time in your medical alert system research, our Buyer’s Guide is the perfect place to start. Not only does it give you some insight into what we look for when we rank the systems on our website, it also provides you with information that will help you make a decision about medical alert systems, even if a company you’re interested in isn’t listed on our website.

We don’t stop there. If you’re looking for every drop of information you can possibly get on how to make the right medical alert system choice for yourself or a loved one, download The Complete Medical Alert System Buyer’s Guide.

It dives deep into exactly how the different kinds of medical alert systems work, exactly what features you should look for, depending on your needs, and it will show you the true costs of each system, while showing you how to avoid hidden fees.

The best part is, our ultimate guide is completely free!

If you’re looking for a faster way to find the best system, take our quick quiz, and we’ll provide you with a recommendation.

Still have questions? We would be happy to help you directly! Contact us and we’d be happy to make sure you get a high-quality, safe, and reliable medical alert system that’s worthy of hanging around your or a loved one’s neck.

The post Why It’s so Important That You Do Your Homework Before Buying a Medical Alert System appeared first on In-Home Safety Guide.

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What do you expect from a medical alert system? This answer can be surprisingly varied, depending on the person being asked. However, all of their responses have at least one thing in common — get help quickly when needed.

That’s the primary purpose of every medical alert system.

Every single medical alert system that’s reviewed on our website, as well as other systems that are available, exist to help you or a loved one get help easily and quickly, so a healthy lifestyle can be maintained. If you’re experiencing a medical emergency, you simply push a button on a neck pendant or a wristband and get the help you need exactly when you need it.

Medical alert systems have expanded to include automatic fall detection, which is something that most people know about. It’s also something that saves many lives. Instead of pushing a pendant for help, the pendant registers a fall and contacts help for you automatically. That’s a big deal when a fall can be so devastating to independence.

If getting help fast was the only thing your medical alert system did, it would still be worth the money, but providers have come a long way since the very first system was invented in the 1970s. There are some extras you may not be aware of that will make a medical alert system more appealing than ever.

Smartwatches

One of the biggest arguments against a medical alert system is they may not look that attractive. You can usually tell right away if someone is wearing a medical alert pendant. Even the wristband buttons are pretty obvious. Some seniors don’t like the look of those buttons. While you want to be independent — you don’t want to show the world that you’re trying to keep it that way!

That’s one of the reasons why we love the new smartwatch options. And no, we don’t mean the Apple Watch – we don’t think the Apple Watch is a good solution for a medical alert system.

However, the newest watches offered by Medical Guardian and MobileHelp are specially designed as medical alert systems. They offer everything you expect from a traditional medical alert system (e.g., easily get emergency help fast), but they look a heck of a lot more stylish than the traditional button pendant. Plus, they can do other things too, like track your steps, monitor your heart rate, and more!

Family Monitoring

Medical alert systems can bring peace of mind to those who wear them, but they can bring peace of mind to family members too. Mom and dad can sometimes be stubborn, but with good reason about wanting to remain independent in their own home. Knowing help is on the way if they fall can encourage family members to support a loved one’s independence.

You can get even more peace of mind with family monitoring services. Although many medical alert systems have been offering apps that notify family members if the emergency button is pushed, Medical Guardian takes this one step further by offering a special family monitoring package with Family Guardian.

This system utilizes three in-home safety sensors that enable loved ones to monitor the activity level of mom and dad. Notifications are sent if a loved one isn’t going about their normal routine. That’s perfect for seniors that may be struggling, but don’t feel like they’re struggling enough to push the button on their pendant.

Touch screen systems

The standard medical alert pendants may look old-fashioned, but so do the base stations. If you’re a senior who isn’t afraid of the latest technology, you may be interested to learn that the MobileHelp Touch is an option.

Instead of a base station that just tells you the time and temperature, the touch base station can provide you with additional features, such as medication management, cognitive games, and you can even access video-based doctor consultations 24-hours a day, 7-days a week.

Not to mention, a touch screen system looks a lot more modern in the home than a traditional base station.

Medication dispensing

Medication can be a huge challenge to remaining independent in the home. Traditional medical alert systems couldn’t do anything about it, but modern systems can.

As mentioned above, the MobileHelp Touch system can help with medication reminders, but Philips Lifeline goes even further by offering an automated medication dispensing service. This device is added to your medical alert system. It’s a great solution for people who have complex medication schedules, or seniors who often forget to take important medications.

Lastly, did you know most medical alert systems can help with other emergency situations, besides medical emergencies? Most will help in the event of a fire or a burglary too.

Check out our list of the best medical alert systems and contact information.

The post The Primary Purpose of Every Medical Alert System & the Unknown Extras appeared first on In-Home Safety Guide.

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There are many things you should look at when you’re shopping for a medical alert system, but one feature is almost always a top concern — cost.

Unfortunately, getting to the bottom of exactly what each system costs, especially when compared to other systems, isn’t as easy as it should be. You might have to dig through each provider’s website individually, and in some cases, you may have to call a representative to figure out exactly how much a system and its accessories are going to cost.

We make it a lot easier to narrow down the costs of various systems by including a “Cost and Value” category in every review, but we want to make it even easier by taking a no-nonsense approach to medical alert pricing. By the time you’re done reading this article, you’ll feel confident that you’re choosing the medical alert system that provides you with the most value.

Which types of systems are the most affordable, and which are the most expensive?

The more modern and innovative the system, the more it’s going to cost. The most affordable systems remain the in-home units that utilize a landline. These kinds of systems usually start at around $20 per month. MedicalAlert is a good example of a basic landline unit that can cost less than $20. Most providers also offer a cellular unit at a comparable price, if you don’t have a landline. These types of systems top out at around $30 per month.

Touch screen technology, like the MobileHelp Touch, as well as mobile solutions, are the next most expensive medical alert systems. They start at around $32 per month. However, some providers may charge a bit more. For example, Medical Guardian’s Mobile Guardian starts at $39.95 per month. If you want to combine a mobile medical alert system with a traditional system, prices may be a couple of dollars more per month. Some of the most innovative systems can cost as much as $79.95 per month, but may be worth it depending on your needs. Check out the Family Guardian system.

Make sure you look closely to see if fall detection is included. Some systems include fall detection with their systems, so it is automatically included in the price, but some don’t.  In most cases, the monthly cost may increase by about $10. The good news is that most systems allow you to upgrade at a later time if you wanted to get the fall detection feature added.

Paying for a system versus paying for service

When you first start looking for medical alert systems, you probably make the assumption that you’ll be buying your own system. That is almost never the case.

All landline and cellular systems, when signing up with a top provider, do not need to be purchased. You will only be responsible for paying the fees associated with monitoring service. Additional accessories, like wall mounted buttons, will come with an additional fee, though. For example, some providers can charge an extra $2 per month for a lockbox.

Although you don’t have to buy most systems, there are a few exceptions. GreatCall sells their GPS-enabled system for $49.99 (and it sometimes goes on sale at 25% off for $37.49). Once you purchase the device, monthly plans start at $19.99 per month.

The newest addition to the medical alert system family is the smartwatch. Both MobileHelp and Medical Guardian offer smart watches that can help you meet your fitness and diet goals. They can monitor your heart rate, and they can even provide you with weather updates. They really are as multi-functional as other smart watches, but they come with the dependable emergency services medical alert systems are known for.

Medical Guardian’s watch doesn’t come with any extra fees. You just pay $44.95 per month for monitoring and service. In contrast, you have to buy the watch from MobileHelp. That’s because it’s actually a slick Samsung watch that’s enabled with MobileHelp’s capabilities. You’ll pay nearly $350 for the watch, plus $24.95 per month for monitoring service.

Ways to save even more

You’ll notice that when we talk about pricing here and on our website, we use qualifying phrases like, “start at” and “at least.” That’s because no medical alert system’s price is set in stone.

Because you aren’t necessarily buying a product, you’re buying a service and you are required to pay for service month after month. In an effort to encourage you to use a medical alert system for a long time, nearly every medical alert system provider offers tiered pricing.

For example, MedicalAlert has the cheapest basic system on the market at $18.29 per month, but it order to lock in that price, you have to pay for the system annually. You can also pay semi-annually, and the price works out to a low $19.95 per month. If you want to pay as you go, the same system and service will cost $22.95 per month.

If you want to save the most money, pay for an annual plan, no matter what kind of medical alert system you choose.

Medical alert system providers also run specials throughout the year. In some cases, it might be something as small as a free lockbox. In others, you may be able to get a month of monitoring for free.

InHomeSafetyGuide is a great place to look for great deals! We partner with the medical alert system providers we review to bring you special promotions and discounts you won’t find anywhere else. For example, sign up with LifeStation and you can get a Free $50 AMEX card!

The post A No-Nonsense Look at Exactly How Much Medical Alert Systems Cost appeared first on In-Home Safety Guide.

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Finding the right medical alert system doesn’t sound like it should be hard. Just a decade ago, there were only a few systems for you to choose from. In just 10 or 15 minutes, you could narrow down your choices and find the right system for you.

Nothing could be further from the truth today.

There are dozens of medical alert system providers to choose from, and there are many different kinds of medical alert systems too. All that competition means medical alert systems are better than they have ever been before, but it also means you could spend an entire afternoon comparing systems and still not feel confident that you’ve found the right system for you or a loved one.

InHomeSafetyGuide’s Medical Alert System “Help Me Choose” Tool

We try and make the search easier here at InHomeSafetyGuide, but you can even get a bit overwhelmed browsing our website with all the information we have to offer. We only review the very best medical alert systems on the market, but we still have several systems for you to check out. Not to mention, although every medical alert system company is unique, they can all start to seem the same after a while.

Don’t let the stress of comparing systems cause you to put off making a decision! Our Medical Alert System Help Me Choose tool will help you make a decision in just seconds.

What makes our Help Me Choose tool so different?

Our Help Me Choose tool is a special step-by-step process that enables you to utilize the expertise of InHomeSafetyGuide without spending hours pouring over all of our detailed medical alert reviews. All you have to do is answer a series of simple questions.

We start by asking who the system is for. You either choose “Myself” or “Loved One,” depending on your unique situation.

Then, our tool will ask where you want to use the system. For example, your loved one may only need a system for inside the home if they do not spend a lot of time outside independently.

Step three gives you the opportunity to think carefully about exactly why you’re considering a medical alert system. Today, they do more than just provide support in the case of a medical emergency. They can help with fall detection and home break-ins too.

Cost is a huge consideration when it comes to medical alert systems. While the medical alert system equipment is often free with an emergency monitoring service plan (usually around $20 – $40 per month),  many people need to budget accordingly on a fixed income.  That’s why the fourth and final step allows you to share how important cost is to your decision.

Based on the answers to these four simple questions, we’ll provide you with a slew of free, instant information. You’ll get:

  • Personalized system recommendations that are based on your responses
  • Monitoring features, and the best price on each system
  • Exclusive offers, if there are any available for the systems that are recommended
  • Our free Buyer’s Guide that will help you compare the two systems that we recommended

With this tool, you can literally get personalized recommendations in just a matter of seconds instead of spending all afternoon comparing systems. To try out the tool for yourself, click here!

Whether you decide to give our tool a try, or you are more interested in comparing systems the old-fashioned way by checking out the reviews on our website, there’s no doubt that you’ll find the system that’s the best fit for you.

The post With the Help Me Choose Tool, It’s Never Been Easier to Find the Right Medical Alert System appeared first on In-Home Safety Guide.

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Here at InHomeSafetyGuide, we’re celebrating another year of reviewing and ranking the best and the most popular medical alert systems on the market. We are passionate about providing seniors and their loved ones with the best medical alert system options, which include making sure you know exactly what you’re in for when you add a medical alert system to your family.

The vast majority of our systems are ranked well, but one stands out in particular — Medical Guardian.

For three years in a row, Medical Guardian has taken our number one spot as the best medical alert system on the market.

Our full Medical Guardian review is a great place to get all the information you need when deciding if you should get a Medical Guardian system, but reading the full review can be time-consuming. If you’re looking for a quicker way to answer your Medical Guardian questions, we’ll tell you exactly what makes them different from other providers below.

No pressure, personalized sales experience

Companies, no matter what the industry, are in business to make money. Unfortunately, a drive to make money can mean customers are taken advantage of, especially in an industry like medical alert systems.

A better business model is one where the business tries to serve the customer in the best ways possible. That’s what Medical Guardian does.

If you call in and speak directly with a Medical Guardian sales associate, you won’t be pressured into a sale. Instead, the person on the other line will answer your questions and help you find the best medical alert system for you. If you have a decision to make, you can get off the line and think it over without being badgered into making a decision on the spot. Spend as much time as you need asking questions and assessing what’s right for you. Medical Guardian will support you throughout the process, no matter what your final decision.

Of course, that same high level of service continues if you decide to purchase their service. CSAA Five Diamond Certified emergency operators will be there for you 24/7, 365-days a year.

Innovative and complete equipment options

There are a lot of medical alert system options, but not all providers offer each one. Medical Guardian does.

Comprehensive options include:

  • Classic Guardian In-Home system that utilizes a landline
  • Home Guardian In-Home system that utilizes a cellular connection
  • Mobile Guardian protects you both inside and outside the home
  • Active Guardian is an all-in-one device with fall detection

Not only does Medical Guardian offer a complete range of products, but they also offer some of the most innovative products on the market. For example, the Active Guardian medical alert device includes both GPS and WiFi location technologies.

They also offer Freedom Guardian, which is essentially a smartwatch that is specially designed to offer emergency services (quick access and two-way communication with an emergency operator), in addition to other features. It’s a discreet and fashionable alternative to traditional medical alert systems.

No matter what your needs, Medical Guardian has a solution for you.

Fair prices with no hidden costs

Medical alert system prices aren’t as straight forward as you would expect. Some systems can be outrageously priced, while others may claim to offer special deals, only to pile on hidden fees later.

That’s not how Medical Guardian does business.

They offer fair, affordable prices that start at just $27.45 per month. No matter what system you choose, you don’t have to sign a long-term contract, there are never any activation fees, and there are no other hidden fees of any kind. With a price-lock-guarantee, you never have to worry about being priced out of your system after using it for a number of years.

Plus, all their traditional medical alert systems come with free equipment. The only exception is the Freedom Guardian, since it is essentially a smartwatch device.

To learn more and ensure you’re getting the best deal, you can speak with a friendly Medical Guardian Life Safety Consultant at 800-225-3002 or visit their website.

The post Discover Why Medical Guardian Has Been Ranked #1 Three Years in a Row appeared first on In-Home Safety Guide.

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At first glance, a fall may seem harmless — but this may not be the case. In fact, falls are the leading cause of injury in adults over the age of 65. And as we age, the risk of a fall increases.

A fall can have a variety of associated complications, especially for older adults. Depending on the severity of the fall, the individual may experience a hospitalization for broken bones, concussions, or other serious medical issues. About 6 out of every 10 falls happen at home. Occupational therapists and nurses can assess the safety of a person’s home and advise on what changes to make to prevent falls.

Often, occupational therapists recommend activities or modifications to help a range of people achieve personal goals: they can help individuals with disabilities participate fully in academic or social settings, help those recovering from injury regain a specific skillset, and provide support for older adults experiencing physical or cognitive decline.

How can an occupational therapist help fall-proof a home?

Occupational therapists (OTs) take a look at a person’s daily activities and goals and may include comprehensive evaluations of the client’s home. From there, they make recommendations for adaptive equipment, as well as provide guidance and education for family members and caregivers.

An occupational therapist can be a wonderful addition to a care team because they focus on a person’s abilities and how to fit the environment to the client, instead of focusing on a person’s inabilities.

What modifications will an OT recommend?

Here are a few examples of recommendations an occupational therapist would make to fall-proof a client’s home.

Increase balance and stability. An OT will assess commonly used paths the client takes in the home. If there is an area of the house where the client leans against a wall or holds onto furniture for balance, an OT might recommend support bars or other equipment for increased stability.

Prevent tripping. An OT will look for clutter and make suggestions on how to keep items out of walkways, which may include storage solutions. If there are carpets in the home, they may suggest sticking them down or removing them entirely. If there are awkward steps, an OT may advise on grab bars or home renovations to remove sudden changes in height (for example, a small slope could be installed).

If the client has a small pet, an OT will make recommendations to ensure the client knows where the pet is at all times in order to prevent tripping.

Support easy access to high shelves. Standing on chairs or other unstable objects can increase the risk of a fall. An OT will look at what cupboards and shelves a client needs to access on a daily basis, and make sure that they are able to do so safely.

Assess the bathroom. The bathroom can be one of the most dangerous rooms in the home. Clients should never use towel bars for support, because they are not intended to be used in that way. OTs commonly recommend non-slip mats in the tub, along with grab bars in the shower and outside of the shower. To prevent tripping, they will advise that shower mats be tacked down.

Provide adequate lighting. An OT will evaluate all lighting in the house to ensure everything is visible, especially in commonly used areas. Night lights in the bedroom and bathroom can provide illumination should the client need anything in the middle of the night.

Occupational therapists may recommend strength training and balance exercises, too. They will work with other members of a client’s care team, such as doctors, physical therapists, caregivers, or family members, to ensure the client is achieving the quality of life they want.

If you or a loved one experiences a fall, you may need to be hospitalized. NurseRegistry is offering a free Hospital Discharge Guide and Discharge Planning Checklist in order to help you plan for discharge. NurseRegistry offers post-hospital care to help you heal at home after a fall.

For other fall prevention tips, visit NurseRegistry’s blog on “How to Prevent Falls Among Seniors”.

Melissa Fischer is the COO of NurseRegistry, where clients are matched with skilled nurses for care at home. NurseRegistry offers a full range of services, including wound care, medication management, infusion therapies, respite care, and more. Nurses are available across Northern California for short, hourly visits or 24/7 care. For more information, visit NurseRegistry online or call (650) 462-1001.

The post How Occupational Therapists Can Fall-Proof Your Home appeared first on In-Home Safety Guide.

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Most seniors want to stay in their homes, and who can blame them? After spending decades living independently, making your own plans and living life by your rules, no one wants to end up in an assisted living facility, especially if it isn’t absolutely necessary. Not to mention, no family member wants to be the big bad wolf and force grandma to give up all of her things so she can shuffle around in a small apartment surrounded by people she doesn’t know.

If you don’t have a lot of extra money to spare on assisted living, your options are even more limited. If grandma can’t live on her own, but you can’t afford assisted living, what are you supposed to do? No matter what your particular situation, there’s no doubt that a medical alert system can provide the perfect solution. After all, they can allow grandma to remain comfortably in her own home!

But…

Medical alert systems aren’t always cheap, especially if you have to add additional features, like fall detection, to your plan. You could end up paying hundreds of extra dollars every year. You’d think a life-saving device, like a medical alert system, would be free to those seniors who need it most.

Will Medicare pay for my medical alert system? The answer could be yes, but it could be no. Let me tell you what I mean.

Medicare Part A, Part B, and Part C

Did you know that there are different Medicare plans? If you or a loved one is new to the Medicare system, this fact may not be so clear.

There is a Part A, Part B, and Part C to Medicare. Part A covers hospital stays while Part B offers medical insurance. Both Part A and Part B are known as original Medicare and are available to those who are 65 or older, with some special exceptions. Unfortunately, Part A and Part B will not cover the cost of a medical alert system.

However, Part C might! The trouble is, Part C comes with a Medicare Advantage plan that must be signed up for separately. If you have Part C, make sure you ask your provider if they will cover the costs of a medical alert system. If you’re searching for a Medicare Advantage plan, see if you can choose one that covers these costs.

Not all Medicare Advantage plans will offer reimbursement for a medical alert system. So now what are you supposed to do?

Medicaid

If you live on a very low fixed income, you may qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid. Fortunately, because Medicaid was created specifically for those with low incomes, they are more likely to offer medical alert system coverage. However, figuring out if this is the case in your particular situation can be quite complicated.

There are a wide variety of programs that may make you eligible to have the costs of your medical alert system covered, you just have to find them. A few include:

  • Home and Community Based Services
  • Consumer Directed Services
  • Money Follows the Person program
  • Medicaid State Plan Personal Care Attendant Programs

It’s really best to speak with an expert about all of your options, especially since so many of these programs are dependent on where you live.

Other ways to save on a medical alert system

Let’s say neither Medicare nor Medicaid are willing to help you. Don’t give up hope yet! There are still other ways to save on medical alert systems.

Have long-term care insurance? Check with them. Have another service provider? Check with them! If it means saving hundreds of dollars each year on the cost of a medical alert system, it’s definitely worth your time to ask every single insurance provider, no matter how irritating they think you are.

If your insurance companies won’t help you, contact the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging. With local branches all over the country, they may be able to provide you with information on local programs that offer assistance to seniors who want help paying for their medical alert system.

Still no luck? Browse the benefits offered by a wide variety of medical alert systems very carefully. If you keep your eyes peeled, you may be able to find one that fits within your budget, especially if you get signed up for a plan when a provider is offering a special deal or discount.

We want to help you save too! We review several medical alert systems on our website to help you save time hunting down all the best systems at the best price on your own. One of our favorites offers a free online risk-assessment to help you identify your risk of experiencing a fall and then matches that risk level with their best medical alert system for your lifestyle.

The post Will Medicare Pay for My Medical Alert System? appeared first on In-Home Safety Guide.

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The world is abuzz with news of the latest Apple Watch. The fourth incarnation of the beloved watch is set to be released at the end of September 2018, and people like us are keeping a close eye on its release.

Here at InHomeSafetyGuide, we absolutely love anything that allows people to take control of their health and safety. When the first Apple Watch came out, we were excited to learn that a special app could enable its wearers to enjoy medical alert system-like services. Unfortunately, after checking it out in person, we all agreed it was a cool device, but it wasn’t a very good medical alert system.

It should come as no surprise that our ears pricked up again as soon as we heard Apple is releasing its fourth incarnation of the watch, and it is emphasizing its health and fitness capabilities. It is especially pushing some health features that target seniors and those with specific health issues.

Heart Monitoring

One of the coolest features of the watch is its ability to detect irregular heartbeats and take electrocardiograms. That potentially empowers watch wearers with heart issues to monitor their own health without having to make an appointment with a doctor, which is currently the only way to receive an EKG.

This feature has the potential to revolutionize the way we care for our health. Data collected can be sent to a doctor who is able to monitor an ongoing health condition without requiring endless appointments. In the future, it’s possible that insurance plans may be willing to subsidize the price of an Apple Watch for patients with certain health conditions.

Fall Detection

That’s right. The new Apple Watch is supposed to have fall detection and fully-supported fall detection at that. The technology is supposed to be able to distinguish between a trip and a fall, and if a fall is detected, it will suggest calling 911. If there is no response within 60 seconds, the call is made automatically. Messages can even be sent to emergency contacts.

So, the question then becomes, why aren’t we recommending the new Apple Watch as a great alternative to a traditional medical alert system?

Personalized Emergency Service

Let’s start with the difference in service because it truly is what makes medical alert systems great. Sure, the Apple Watch device itself is cool, but it isn’t worth much if it doesn’t provide you with the support you need in an emergency situation.

Let’s say you fall, and the automatic response to call 911 is initiated on your Apple Watch. Is 911 who you really want to speak to first? Even if your emergency contacts are notified, they are notified while the call to 911 is being placed. With a regular medical alert system, you get to speak to an actual person who can help you decide who to call.

Medical alert system providers have all of your information on file too. Not only can they place the emergency call for you, but they can also relay important information to medical personnel about the kind of care you require. They can even point emergency responders to a lockbox that contains the key to your home, so there’s no need to break down the door or bust out a window.

What if you experience any other kind of emergency, besides a fall? If you have the Apple Watch, you can’t just push a button like you can with a medical alert system. Instead, you have to hold down a side button for a few seconds, while doing some swiping and clicking. That’s not what you want to be doing if you’re experiencing a medical emergency. Not to mention, while all that swiping, clicking, and holding will help you get in touch with local emergency services and your emergency contacts, it won’t connect you with an experienced medical alert system operator who knows the best way to help in a wide variety of situations.

Connectivity

The whole point of a medical alert system is that it’s extremely easy to use. The easier it is to use, the more likely seniors are to actually use it. We bet there will be a lot of seniors out there who get an Apple Watch with the intention of using the medical alert features, but they won’t actually follow through because setting it all up, in addition to using the features, is complicated.

Medical alert systems are basically ready to go right out of the box. Cellular units (if there’s no home landline) connect automatically with a cellular service, without the need for a separate contract. Literally, the only thing you ever have to do is push the emergency button.

If you’re using the Apple Watch, you better make sure your mobile phone is also nearby at all times. It’s the only way your watch can make calls to emergency contacts. That doesn’t sound like a big deal until you experience an emergency in the bathroom and your phone is all the way in the kitchen.

There is a workaround. You can set up the watch to connect to a Wi-Fi network. Then, if you’re tech-savvy enough, you can enable the watch for Wi-Fi calling. If you aren’t tech-savvy, that can be a near-impossible task to complete. Of course, there’s also the possibility that you thought you set everything up right, only to discover you didn’t actually get the job done when you go to use the emergency feature and it can’t make the call.

Although you can skip all that by purchasing an Apple Watch with cellular connectivity capabilities, that brings us to our next point.

Cost

Cost can be a huge barrier for many people with medical issues who could benefit from a medical alert system. An Apple Watch will set you back between $399 and $499, the latter being the cost of an Apple Watch with cellular capabilities. That’s a lot of money!

In contrast, other medical alert systems are much more affordable. You can pay on a month-to-month basis, which makes it a lot easier to fit into a strict budget.

But, the Apple Watch is so cool! Comparing its design and cost to traditional medical alert systems is like comparing apples and oranges.

That’s where the newest and coolest medical alert devices come in.

Freedom Guardian Freedom Guardian and MobileHelp Smart

If you love the idea of a slick, modern smartwatch, but don’t want to compromise on the features of a traditional medical alert system, you have to take a look at the Freedom Guardian and MobileHelp Smart.

These two watches have everything you love about medical alert systems, with everything you love about the style of the Apple Watch. Both of these medical alert system watches contain some cool features while providing users with simple push-button emergency access, all without the need for any other phones or devices. They are styled to look modern and sleek, without breaking the bank. The MobileHelp Smart is $349.95 with an affordable monthly service at just $24.95 after you purchase the watch. If you have a tight budget, look to the Freedom Guardian that costs just $99 with complete medical alert system services starting at just $44.95 per month.

MobileHelp Smart

In short, we definitely don’t recommend the Apple Watch to be used in place of a medical alert system. Although it offers some health services that may be great for the average yet tech-savvy user, it isn’t a good option if you’re looking for an easy-to-use, streamlined, full-support connection to the help you need when you need it. For that, you definitely have to turn to a dedicated medical alert system, like the Freedom Guardian or MobileHelp Smart.

The post Reasons Why the New Apple Watch Is Not a Good Medical Alert Solution appeared first on In-Home Safety Guide.

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We’ve got a lot of really great things to say about Medical Guardian, our number one medical alert system choice for older adults who want to remain independent in their home. We have shared our extensive review about everything Medical Guardian has to offer and they have shown up on our blog not once, but twice. It seems there is no shortage of great things to say about Medical Guardian and we have another one to share.

Medical Guardian won the Silver Stevie® Award in Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals, and Related Industries category.

What is a Silver Stevie® Award?

The Stevie Awards were created in 2002 as a way to honor companies and individuals in the business world for their hard work and dedication. Browse the 2018 awards and you’ll discover that a wide variety of industries are represented, including the medical field.

Winning a Silver Stevie® award is a big deal because over 2,500 organizations were nominated for an award. In addition, an awards ceremony and gala event were held at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Medical Guardian was chosen for the award in the Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals, and Related Industries category because “Medical alert systems are so important and it will become more important in the future. Medical Guardian has reached the goal to service its customers completely.”

What makes Medical Guardian’s customer service stand out?

We review many categories on our website when determining the overall score for the medical alert systems we recommend. Although taking the time to consider things like equipment and setup are important, no other category trumps customer service. After all, it doesn’t matter how high-tech your medical alert device is if someone isn’t available to help you when you need it the most!

Medical Guardian currently has the highest monitoring and service reputation score on our website because they:

  • Have monitoring centers that are all based in the United States
  • Offer nationwide coverage in all 50 states
  • Are flexible when determining what kind of help you need
  • Have operators who are trained to dispatch emergency and non-emergency services
  • Are happy to answer any question or concern, no matter how trivial
  • Offer triple-redundant backup systems so you can always get the help you need

One of our favorite things about Medical Guardian’s customer service is the fact that they really do care about their customers. After contacting their monitoring center, one of their friendly agents will call and check in on you later to make sure everything turned out okay.

Geoff Gross, founder and CEO of Medical Guardian says it best, “We’re honored to be recognized by The Stevie® Awards program and to receive such an esteemed award. In our effort to empower older adults to live a life without limits, we strive to go above and beyond for our customers every single day and provide the care and service they need, whenever they need it. This win reinforces and reaffirms our commitment to providing exceptional service and support to our customers and their families.”

We’re proud to endorse Medical Guardian on our website, and we’re happy to say we aren’t the only ones who recognize the quality of service they have to offer. If you or a loved one is in need of a medical alert system, give them a try and you won’t be disappointed!

The post InHomeSafetyGuide’s #1 Medical Alert System Wins Silver Stevie® Award appeared first on In-Home Safety Guide.

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Smart home systems were invented to make life a lot easier, and boy do they. It feels like I don’t have to get up to do much of anything if I don’t want to! My vacuum cleans the floor without my help, a pot of coffee gets started in the kitchen before I even get out of bed in the morning, and I don’t even have to get off the couch to open the blinds in the window anymore.

This stuff makes our homes safer too. I can lock or unlock the door at the touch of a button, which means I don’t have to be home to do it. I can even check in on my security cameras while I’m typing an article at the local coffee shop.

Well, I gotta tell you, for as convenient and safe as smart home technology is, I wouldn’t be half as excited about it if it didn’t also reduce energy usage. These tips are for those people who want to go a little greener with help from their smart home systems.

Track your energy usage

With smart home technology today, it should come as no surprise that you can keep track of all the energy usage in your home. A home energy monitor makes that easy.

Devices like these connect to your home’s power meter and tell you how much energy your home is using. If you notice that things seem a little out of hand, you can go on the hunt to discover what’s causing the spike. It could be that your kid left their computer on. Again.

Some devices can attach directly to different appliances. For example, the Aquanta is a device that helps you keep track of the energy your water heater uses. You can also control when it’s used, drastically reducing the amount of water that’s kept hot on a regular basis.

Use smart plugs

Remember when the go-green tip was to unplug everything that you aren’t using? In theory, that’s a great idea because appliances and electronics continue to pull energy from the outlet even if they aren’t being used. I don’t know about you, but that was a tip I never followed, no matter how green I wanted to be. There’s no way I’m unplugging the TV, the microwave, the phone charger, the lamps, my Xbox… And then plugging them all back in again all day, every day.

Smart plugs to the rescue!

By plugging these into the outlet first, you can effectively unplug all those appliances and electronics without actually unplugging them. Not only can they allow you to cut power to those appliances, you can even control them with a smartphone. That way you can turn the lights on in your house before you walk in the door so you don’t stub your toe.

Install a smart thermostat

A programmable thermostat and a smart thermostat are not the same thing. Although a programmable thermostat is better than nothing when it comes to saving energy, a smart thermostat can do much more.

Smart thermostats will actually learn your family’s patterns, adjusting the temperature in your home without you having to do any programming at all. They can also use the temperature and humidity outside to adjust the thermostat. Many will help you monitor HVAC usage so you can save even more energy!

By all means, update all the lights in your home to LEDs and turn down the thermostat when you leave for the weekend, but with these high-tech tips, you can make life greener, more convenient, and safe, which is really what smart home technology is all about. And not having to get off the couch if you’re binging your favorite show on Netflix.

The post Environmentally Friendly Smart Home Tips for Those Who Want to Go Green appeared first on In-Home Safety Guide.

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