5 Reasons to Consider Medical Alert Services

senior woman getting fitted for an alert device

Most of you have probably seen the television commercial where a woman falls and says, “I have fallen and can’t get up!” That ad illustrates that we often think we do not need help until we actually really need help.

Seniors are increasingly realizing the advantages that new technologies, such as medical alert services, offer to make their lives safer at home. Medical alert services provide the security and reliability of 24-7 monitoring at home.

All too often, however, older people wait until after a fall or medical incident to investigate med-alert services, believing that it is a complicated decision. There are some compelling reasons to help a senior in their decision-making about the devices:

  1. The security of 24-7 monitoring at home.
    Accidents and medical emergencies can take place any time day or night, without warning. With so many families living great distances from one another, you may not always have someone nearby to call for help. Med alert services provide that reliability that someone is nearby to help.
  2. Prompt emergency assistance.
    At the touch of a button, seniors have access to urgent medical care within minutes. Operators at the medical alert service call center will stay on the line until paramedics or other emergency personnel arrive. The operators can also convey information from trained medical professionals about what to do until help arrives. Operators can also promptly alert family members and caretakers of the emergency situation.
  3. Protection against risk of age-related injuries.
    The longer people live, the greater the risk for falls and other serious injuries due to impaired thinking or physical ailments. A study found that subscribers to medical alert services have fewer hospital admissions and shorter stays, helping them live independently longer and providing peace of mind not only for the senior but for family members as well.
  4. Maintain independence.
    The use of a medical alert service can help delay — and might even eliminate — the need to move into an assisted living or long-term care facility.
  5. Convenience.
    Med alert services are user-friendly for older people, especially during an emergency when they may be incapacitated and have difficulty remembering contact numbers or seeing telephone keypads. Instead, the alert systems have a large button on a necklace or wristband to push, to get prompt access to an operator of the med alert system. The operator also has instant access to the user’s correct address, phone number and contact information for family members or emergency contact person.

Once seniors understand all of the compelling reasons to subscribe to med-alert services, the decision to move forward is often an easy one to make. The next step is deciding the best medical alert service for your particular needs. Lompoc Valley Medical Center has a long-established partnership with Philips LifeLine. Philips LifeLine has an insurance department that will check to see if your secondary insurance will offer partial reimbursement, or if Medi-Cal will cover the expense.

For more information about LVMC’s Lifeline, call 805-740-2842 or visit https://lompocvmc.com/patients/lifeline.

About the Author

Author: Karen Ortiz, Outreach Coordinator

Karen Ortiz is LVMC’s Outreach Coordinator. Karen previously worked as Development and Special Events Manager for United Boys and Girls Clubs of Santa Barbara County, after serving on the board for 10 years. She has a long career as a licensed Financial Advisor and Vice President Relationship Manager with Santa Barbara Bank & Trust and is a graduate of Santa Barbara High School. She has multiple banking certifications and attends Fielding Graduate University for Non-Profit leadership. Karen is a graduate of the Leading for Community Impact program, serves on the CALM Advisory Council, Aware & Prepare Public Education committee, Elder & Dependent Adult Abuse Prevention Council of Santa Barbara County and Latino Elder Outreach Network (LEON). She is a trustee for the Lompoc Hospital District Foundation and was appointed in 2019 to the Human Services Commission for the City of Lompoc.