Not only can this result in a painful and debilitating injury, ultimately resulting in an undesired visit to an urgent care clinic or emergency room, but studies show that over half of seniors who fall once will experience another fall within 6 months. Furthermore, unable to reach a telephone to call for help, the elderly person can lie helpless on the floor for hours, even days. Sadly, the longer the senior goes unfound, the more likely the injury will worsen and, in rare instances, be life threatening.
Medical Alert Systems, commonly referred to as emergency response monitors, are non-invasive bracelets or necklaces designed to help seniors avoid the above scenario by sending a call-for-help signal to the proper authorities. Originating in the 1970s, medical alert is certainly not a new concept in senior care. However, with the application of new, innovative technologies such as GPS and Pulse Detection, this already important medical device has now become even more intuitive in caring for the elderly. Below are three ways medical alert systems help make caring for the elderly more efficient.
- Multiple Touch Points - With practically everyone owning a smart phone these days, technology now allows real-time notifications straight to your phone or tablet. Children of seniors can now sync their smart-phone with their parent's medical alert monitor. This allows “multiple touch points” in the event of an emergency. Therefore, in addition to emergency authorities receiving immediate alerts, such as nearby hospitals and fire departments, anyone synced to the monitor will also be informed of irregular activity surrounding their elderly parent. This is important because the more people who are notified, the more quickly someone can address the situation.
- Location Accuracy - Newer medical alert systems are equipped with a Global Positioning System (GPS) which makes location accuracy more precise. Not all accidents occur in the home. For example, one might have slip and fall in a place nobody expects, such as down a flight of stairs in an office building. The faster the victim is found, the less likely a minor injury turns into a major injury.
- Pulse Monitor – More expensive medical alert systems have pulse detection monitoring built into the wrist band. Not only will this trigger an immediate response if someone suffers a heart attack or stroke, but it also acts as preventive medicine by detecting pulse irregularity before a major medical emergency occurs. By knowing beforehand that a senior may suffer from cardiovascular disease, preventive measures can be taken.
If you care for an elderly loved one and have not yet purchased a medical alert system, we recommend checking consumer reports and reviews online to find a monitor that suits your loved one’s needs. Not only are medical alert monitors very affordable (normally between $25-$50 per month for the above services), but they also are easy to set up and have long battery lives. The peace of mind gained by purchasing an emergency response system for your elderly loved one will prove to be invaluable! If your loved one does need immediate medical attention, please contact your nearest urgent care clinic, as their wait times are significantly shorter than local hospital emergency rooms.
Article written by Alex Milzer with Senior Directory, LLC.