How can I keep my elderly relative safe from harm?
This is a vital question which many of us are going to face in the future or are facing now. Medical alerts are a great way to give us peace of mind when we are facing challenging decisions about how to keep our elderly loved ones safe or those living with a disability.
Medical alerts are devices that can summon medical assistance for seniors who have had a fall or a medical emergency, without them having to make it to their mobile phone. Most, in home, devices have a unit that is placed somewhere in the house, which acts as a receiver, which is, in turn, linked to a smaller device that is worn as a pendant or bracelet. If the elderly resident engages the alert device they are wearing, a responder can talk to them through the receiver to assess what is happening. Some devices can be programmed with up to 8 telephone numbers, so that the numbers will automatically dial in a pre-set order, to summon assistance or to inform relatives of an incident. Medical alerts are an excellent way to give the wearer, and their relatives, a greater feeling of confidence that their loved one, who is still living alone, has a safety net in case something happens.
Medical Alerts are a cost effective, and unobtrusive way to care for seniors. The larger units can be linked to portable devices for short range care or you can choose mobile devices with greater coverage. The mobile units generally come in the form of a bracelet or a pendant which is worn just like any other jewellery. The advantage of this jewellery is that it comes with the ability to summon round the clock medical assistance.
Medical Alerts – Which one should I choose?
If you have concluded that a Medical Alert device is just what is needed for your elderly relative, the next step is to decide which one is right for your situation. Here are a some of the available medical devices and their features which may help you to decide.
- VitalCall EVE 3G
The VitalCall EVE 3G unit is combined with a pendant or bracelet device to protect the wearer in the home & around the garden. The Pearl pendant has an activation light function, when it is engaged. This means the outer edge lights up, so the wearer knows their call for help has been received. This is especially valuable for the hearing impaired.
Let’s look at some features:
- Ideal for use with the NBN
- Bypasses the NBN to connect with the mobile network
- Has a range of 150m for normal dwelling and up to 300m in open air
- Mobile Personal Alarm units are available in neck and wrist devices
- 48 Hour backup battery for base unit
- 5 year battery backup for pendant
- Waterproof pendant or wristband
- Operates from a sim card
Contact VitalCall on 1300 360 808 or via the website at : https://www.vitalcall.com.au/products/units/eve-3g-medical-alarm-system if this sounds like the one for you
- Personal Mobile Life Alarm 3G
This little gem is a personal, mobile alarm with a built in GPS locator and Fall Detector. This is a wireless device which will work anywhere that you receive a mobile phone signal. This device is small enough to fit in your pocket and light enough to put around your neck on a lanyard. The Personal Mobile Alarm can be programmed with up to 5 emergency contact numbers with the unit able to recognise and call 000.
When the wearer has a fall, the Fall detector protocols kick in and the unit automatically sends a text to the nominated contacts with the time of the fall and the GPS location. The unit will then call each of the nominated contacts until the call is answered and it can establish two-way communication just like a mobile phone. Another great feature of this little unit is that if you need to locate the wearer at any time, just text the Personal Mobile Life Alarm and it will text back the GPS location. This is the ideal device for those just starting to experience early Alzheimer’s or Dementia.
Let’s go over those features again.
- Built in GPS
- Fall Detector
- SIM card
- Re-chargeable lithium battery
- Battery time without GPS engaged is up to 30 days
- Battery time with GPS engaged is up to 3 days
- Comes with charging dock & cable
This great little unit is available through National Health Australia who can be contacted on 1800336 333 or you can purchase online via the website at: https://nationalhealth.com.au
- 4G NHA Life Alarm
This is a personal, mobile device which is the very latest 2020 model. This unit connects to the 4G, 4GX, 4G+ and 3G networks using a SIM card. It has an SOS button and includes a Fall Detector. When the unit is activated, it will text up to 8 nominated contacts with the date, time, wearer name and the GPS map location. The unit will then call each nominated contact in order and establish two-way communication when the call is answered. If the unit reaches a voicemail, it will hang up after 25 seconds and dial the next contact. If the device is accidentally activated and it is a false alarm, then the wearer just needs to press the large SOS button while the alarm is sounding and the call for help will be cancelled.
This unit can also act like a mobile phone. The wearer can scroll through the 8 nominated contacts, and when the correct contact number comes up, the wearer can give them a call just like using a mobile phone.
The features of this unit are:
- GPS emergency locator
- Fall detector (automatic)
- 8 Programmable contacts
- Battery percentage indicator
- Wristband or Trouser/Bag clip
- Charging station with cable
- USB AU charging plug
- Enhanced loudspeaker
This newly released model is also available through National Health Australia. They are an official NDIS provider of Communication Products and Assistive Technology. They can be contacted on 1800336 333 or you can purchase online via the website at: https://nationalhealth.com.au
As you can see, there are many benefits to having a medical alarm. The first and foremost of these is the peace of mind that your loved one has an extra layer of security.
Medical alarms are very easy to use and can be worn constantly, even in the shower, if you select a waterproof model. The units encourage independence for both the wearer and the carer or family members. The wearer has the option of living life the way they choose, regardless of age or disability, but knowing that help can be summoned at the touch of a button.
If you are looking for a registered NDIS provider to assist you to live the life you choose, please contact ConnectAbility Australia on 02 4962 1000 or via the website at: https://www.connectability.org.au/