What follows is Part 4 of a 4 Part series that will explain the variations in medical alert products and what you should know before you buy...
In the final installment of our series on Med Alert Systems, we'd like to offer a few quick tips on some of the items/features that are often overlooked in these systems. Remember, the ultimate goal is to make an intelligent purchase!
One question we hear frequently is what is the difference in a "911 Dialer" and a full Medical Alert systems. "911 Dialers" are typically available at drug stores, department stores, etc. They advertise a "One time fee", which is the purchase price, and no monthly fees. While these may look similar to a Medical Alert unit, they differ in that they have one function: Dial 911. On the surface, this may seem to meet the basic requirement. However, there are drawbacks to this type of device, not the least of which is the ability to test it on a regular basis without contacting the 911 emergency center. If it's not tested regularly, how can you confirm it's function??? In addition, this type of unit does not provide health information to the responders, nor does it allow for "lesser needs" calls, such as having a neighbor or family member be contacted for some reason.
Before making your purchase, you should ask where the monitoring center is located. During a crisis clear communication is crucial, and adding an off-shore accent to deal with can slow things down. Finally, on-going support & service are important. When you're depending on a device for emergency events, it's comforting to know that, if there is a problem, it's easily resolved. Local service is invaluable in this regard.
All of the units carried by our agency are installed & supported locally, our monitoring is provided by a CSAA 5-star U.S. center, and we're close by. In addition, we have the ability to "tailor" your response needs to the unit. IE: Call a neighbor first to have them come over. Configuration changes and setup like this are free of charge with our products. Feel free to view the most popular units we have on our web site. If you have any questions, give us a call. We'll be glad to assist you in any way we can!