Medical Alert Systems for seniors have taken on different meanings, but are usually associated with emergency alerts systems for the elderly. Though this is most common type of medical alert system, it’s not the only one. Besides medical conditions primarily affecting seniors there are also other medical conditions affecting people of all ages. Conditions such as diabetes, epilepsy, life-threatening allergies, and children and adults with special needs are all covered by some sort of medical alert system.
Let’s first take a look at medical alert systems for seniors since the basic technology and system structure is quite similar to other types of alert systems. Senior alert systems, as they’re typically referred to when designed for the elderly; consist of a pendant with a wireless transmitter and a speaker box that’s connected to a phone. In some systems, the speaker box or receiver is actually an enhanced telephone that can also be used to places calls apart from the alert system.
Senior Emergency Alert System
A senior emergency alert system will connect the user to either a 24/7 call monitoring center where they can have their situation assessed by an operator or in the case of an automated alert system, a call is placed to a preprogrammed number usually belonging to a loved one or neighbor. The advantage of a call monitoring service is that the operator can speak with the elderly user and determine what kind of assistance they require based on the circumstances.
In some cases, the senior may be simply frightened or confused and the operator and help calm them down or contact a family or neighbor to stop by. This prevents overloading the 911 emergency system with unnecessary calls. On the other hand if the operator determines that a true emergency exists and the health or safety of the senior is in danger, then they will place a call to 911.
Senior Medical Alert System
Though people with other medical conditions and special health needs can take advantage of telephone-based medical alert system, there are also senior medical alert systems that use 24/7 call centers without automated callers. These systems instead, use medical alert bracelets to initiate calls from emergency personnel. The bracelets contain information regarding the wearer’s medical condition and a medical record number that operators can use to pull up the subscriber’s electronic health record. From there, the operator and communicate with the first responder and assist in getting him or her the emergency treatment required to possibly save his or her life.
The typical customer for this type of alert system is someone who is mobile and not confined to their home without other family members around such is the case with many seniors. This group also includes children and younger people with conditions such as diabetes and epilepsy, but can also include the elderly with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease that may wander away from loved ones when unsupervised.
If first responders encounter people in distress who are wearing medical alert bracelets they are trained in the procedure for calling the monitoring service to obtain vital information needed to assist the victim. And since the bracelet is worn around the wrist, it’s quite easy for emergency personnel to discover it when checking for a pulse.
Best Medical Alert System for Seniors?
Out of all the available medical alert systems, perhaps the most intriguing and best medical alert system for seniors is the use of medical alert dogs. Dogs have now been trained to detect hypoglycemic conditions (elevated blood sugar) in diabetics and warn them of the situation in order to give themselves an insulin injection or call for help.
Diabetic alert dogs are trained to look for the signs a hypoglycemia in their owners such as shaking and sweating and give them a warning signal. Other types of alert dogs can sense an oncoming epileptic seizure, particularly in children, and signal them to lie down in order to prevent injury.