Best Medical Alert System for 2021 (Reviews & Buyer’s Guide)

best medical alert system

Medical alert devices are a quick and simple way to get access to emergency help wherever and whenever you need it.

But how do you choose the best medical alert system for your needs?

We’re here to help!

We dedicated hours of research searching for the most reliable, practical, and affordable devices on the market. We also included a detailed guide to help you make an informed decision.

Let’s get started!

The Best Medical Alert System: A Brief Overview of Our Selection

Product
Rating
Key Features
Website
1
OVERALL RATING
10
Expert Review
  • Best medical alert system for 2021
  • 100% lifetime warranty on equipment
  • Free-of-charge spouse coverage
  • Locked-in subscription rates
  • Unlimited number of contacts
FROM: $ 24.95
Visit Site
2
OVERALL RATING
9.9
Expert Review
  • Best mobile medical alert system
  • Fastest response times
  • Access to services via smartphones
  • Small & lightweight design
  • Discounts with AARP membership
FROM: $ 19.99
Visit Site
3
OVERALL RATING
9.8
Expert Review
  • Best cellular medical alert system
  • 6 top-of-the-line alert systems
  • 240 languages supported
  • FDA compliant & FCC certified
  • 30-day risk-free trial
FROM: $ 19.95
Visit Site
4
OVERALL RATING
9.7
Expert Review
  • Best system for overall value
  • Made & monitored in the US
  • Superior customer support
  • Protection at home and on the road
  • A large selection of add-ons
FROM: $ 19.95
Visit Site
5
OVERALL RATING
9.6
Expert Review
  • Best life alert system for caregivers
  • Only system with Alexa integration
  • A wide choice of services
  • CSAA Five Diamond certified
  • 3,000+ online 5-star reviews
FROM: $ 21.95
Visit Site
6
OVERALL RATING
9.5
Expert Review
  • Best selection of senior alert systems
  • Certified monitoring centers
  • Sleek and sophisticated design
  • Free caregiver platform
  • Automatic fall detection available
FROM: $ 29.95
Visit Site
7
OVERALL RATING
9.5
Expert Review
  • Best system with fall detection
  • An industry pioneer and leader
  • Free caregiver phone app
  • Personalized care plan
  • Superior location tracking
FROM: $ 29.95
Visit Site
8
OVERALL RATING
9.3
Expert Review
  • Best system with additional features
  • Nationwide coverage
  • Certified monitoring centers
  • Discounts with longer plans
  • Flexible payment options
FROM: $ 16.95
Visit Site
9
OVERALL RATING
9.2
Expert Review
  • Best system with activity tracking
  • Provides proactive care
  • Award-winning devices
  • Fair & straightforward pricing
  • Free US ground shipping
FROM: $ 30.00
Visit Site
10
OVERALL RATING
9.0
Expert Review
  • Best home medical alert system
  • In-home temperature monitoring
  • Locked-in monthly rates
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Next-day shipping
FROM: $ 29.95
Visit Site

Top 10 Medical Alert System Reviews

1. LifeFone Review

OVERALL RATING 10
  • Connectivity: Landline, cellular
  • Average response time: 60 seconds
  • Base unit coverage: 1,300 ft
  • Monitoring center location: US (New York & California)
  • Payment plan options: Monthly, quarterly, or annual
  • Cancellations: Free
  • Price: $24.95–$39.95
  • Return policy: 30 days

LifeFone has been providing some of the most reliable, comprehensive, and trusted senior medical alert systems since 1976. With its selection of four high-quality systems, this company has a device to suit any user’s needs.

Let’s take a closer look at the products offered by LifeFone.

LifeFone At-Home Medical Alert System

At $24.95 a month, the At-Home alert system is one of the best, most reliable, and more affordable home devices in the industry. 

Though inexpensive, it comes with all the essentials and plenty of extra features:

  • A base station equipped with a loud two-way speaker, a highly sensitive microphone, and a large emergency alert button with Braille lettering in the middle
  • A waterproof help button (available as a pendant or bracelet)
  • 1,300 feet of coverage from the base unit (twice as far as other devices on the market, our medical alert system comparison found)
  • A 32-hour battery backup in case of power outages
  • Personalized emergency notification plans, which you can change at any time—you can even add your spouse to the basic plan free of charge
  • Lifetime warranty on all equipment

LifeFone At-Home Cellular System

If you don’t have a landline connection, you can always try the At-Home cellular system. Equipped with the same features, this home alert system for seniors uses AT&T’s cellular network instead of a classic phone line. It may be a bit more expensive than the basic system, but at $30.95/month, it’s still quite affordable.

At-Home & On-the-Go Medical Alert System

For active seniors who don’t want to lose the security of a home system, LifeFone offers a combo of both. 

With the company’s At-Home & On-the-Go package, you get a mobile device and a base station for the price of one, plus GPS tracking and 600 feet of coverage from the base unit. 

Voice in Pendant

If you want to go fully mobile, you can opt for the portable pendant, an all-in-one senior alert solution that can protect you both at home and on the move. 

All of the systems come with optional fall detection, which at just $5 a month is nearly the lowest in the business.

LifeFone also has the biggest offering of optional upgrades and accessories, including the following:

  • Vanity pendants
  • A wall-mounted and hanging lockbox
  • Daily check-in calls 
  • Medication reminder 
  • Mobile apps—for individuals and families 
  • 24/7 protection against fire, smoke, and carbon monoxide
  • A wall-mounted medical alert button
  • A protection plan providing free replacement of any defective equipment

It’s not just the devices that are extraordinary—the company is also flexible, dependable, and transparent. LifeFone is completely upfront about all costs and fees, while subscription rates are locked in, meaning they will never change. What’s more, plans can be canceled at no additional cost to you.

Unlike other providers that tend to outsource their monitoring services, LifeFone owns and operates its US-based call centers. This way, the company ensures fast, reliable, and uninterrupted access to trained and caring staff.

If you’re looking for a trusted alert system for seniors with a wide range of added features and upgrades at an affordable price, you won’t find a better option than LifeFone. 

PROS:
  • 24/7 US-based call center
  • No hidden costs
  • A+ rating with the BBB
  • Easy to install, and setup videos are available
CONS:
  • Mobile unit is not waterproof
  • A few medical alert system reviews complain that the devices are too sensitive (especially fall detection)
  • Average response time

2. GreatCall Review

OVERALL RATING 9.9
  • Connectivity: Cellular
  • Average response time: Less than 15 seconds
  • Base unit coverage: Unlimited
  • Monitoring center location: US (California & Nevada)
  • Payment plan options: Monthly
  • Cancellations: Free
  • Price: $19.99–$34.99
  • Return policy: 30 days

GreatCall does things a bit differently than the other providers mentioned in our medical care alert system reviews. The company doesn’t have an in-home system, but it does offer cutting-edge mobile solutions and smartphones that will protect seniors both at home and on the go.

The company has two medical alert systems available.

Lively Mobile Plus

This is an all-in-one, portable alert solution that offers 24/7 protection anywhere you go.  

It has a one-button design that immediately connects you to GreatCall’s Urgent Response Center. An IAED-certified agent will then confirm your location, assess the situation, and provide you the help you need, whether you’re having a medical emergency or you need roadside assistance. 

One standout feature of this system—and other GreatCall devices—is exceptional audio quality, making this the best medical alert system for hearing impaired users. Another is the unbelievably fast response times. Most of the calls are answered in under 15 seconds, while enhanced GPS tracking is used to determine your precise location, adding up to a quick response and overall superior service.

Lively Wearable2

If you already own a smartphone, you can take advantage of the new Lively Wearable2 medical device. 

This smartwatch-like device pairs with the Lively app on your phone, connecting you to GreatCall’s response centers with the push of a button. It also includes other useful features, such as a step counter and daily health tips.

Don’t be misled by this high-tech elderly alert system—it’s incredibly easy to set up and use. There is no need for charging, plus it’s so sleek and lightweight, you’ll forget you’re even wearing it.

The Lively devices are available in three plans. They are all affordable, but we recommend the Ultimate Health & Safety Package as the best option. For just $39.99 a month, this plan comes with a medical alert device and several other features:

  • The fall alert system, which automatically connects you to the call center in case of a fall
  • GreatCall Link, an excellent way to keep friends and family updated on your health and safety through a free phone app
  • Urgent Care, which allows you access to board-certified doctors or registered nurses who can provide you with anything from advice to prescriptions

GreatCall Smartphones

Besides these revolutionary mobile medical alert systems, GreatCall sells smartphones with incorporated alert technology, i.e., a 5Star App or an emergency button that instantly puts you through to its response centers.

You can choose from these two phones:

  • The Jitterbug Smart2, dubbed the simplest smartphone, features a large screen, built-in camera, and mobile internet. Also included is the 5Star App to use in case of emergencies. 
  • The Lively Flip comes equipped with an Urgent Response button, a powerful speaker, and Amazon Alexa integration. This allows you to use your voice to make calls, text, get medication reminders, and so much more.

Like the medical alert systems we discussed above in our GreatCall mobile medical alert system reviews, the smartphones are available in three plans. The Ultimate is once again the most affordable. It comes with access to all the unique services, plus a variety of brain games to keep your mind active and engaged. 

With fast response times, an innovative design, unique features, and excellent service, GreatCall’s selection of medical and life alert systems is certainly worth trying.

PROS:
  • No long-term contracts
  • Excellent value for money
  • A set of unique features & services
  • Free car charger with smartphone purchase
CONS:
  • There is a restocking fee
  • Shipping charges are non-refundable
  • The activation fee is non-refundable in certain cases

3. MobileHelp Review

OVERALL RATING 9.8
  • Connectivity: Landline, cellular
  • Average response time: 17–25 seconds
  • Base unit coverage: 1,400 ft
  • Monitoring center location: US (New York & California)
  • Payment plan options: Monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, or annual
  • Cancellations: Free
  • Price: $19.95–$299.70
  • Return policy: 30 days

MobileHelp provides the latest in medical alert technology while still offering classic and comprehensive med alerts for seniors at a great price. 

Here’s a quick overview of this company’s product lineup.

MobileHelp Classic

The most basic system, the MobileHelp Classic, is one of the least expensive devices with a cellular connection. The system is equipped with the following:

  • A base unit with an extended 1,400 feet of coverage
  • A waterproof help button
  • An optional fall detection button for just $10 extra

MobileHelp Wired Home

The only elderly alert option from this company that operates on a landline, Wired Home has all the essentials of a classic in-home system, offering 24/7 protection for up to 1,300 feet from the base unit.

MobileHelp Solo

This plan includes a mobile unit and a wearable help button—the perfect system for security on the go. It also features GPS tracking, remote activation, and an amazing 24-hour battery life. 

Mobile Duo

Consisting of two of the mobile devices available in the Solo package, this set provides inexpensive portable protection for you and your spouse or roommate. At $44.95/month, this is the cheapest two-for-one offer out there—as confirmed in more than one medical alert system price comparison.

MobileHelp Duo

MobileHelp Duo is the ultimate bundle for complete protection no matter where you are. Combining the Classic and Solo packages, this is the most comprehensive medical alert system for older adults with an active lifestyle. 

MobileHelp Touch

Ideal for seniors interested in the latest technology, MobileHelp Touch includes a mobile unit, a help button, a fall detection device, and a tablet serving as a connection hub to monitor your health and medication schedule. The tablet also has brain games to boost your cognitive abilities and keep you entertained. 

Each senior alert system comes with the following features: 

  • Access to US-based customer service, courtesy of Rapid Response, one of the highest-rated emergency response services
  • A 30-day risk-free trial
  • Transparent short-term contracts with no hidden fees
  • Free equipment
  • Free activation and shipping (depending on the plan)
  • AT&T coverage (except for Wired Home)
  • A free lockbox

MobileHelp may not offer a lot in terms of accessories, but it does have some other exceptional services available with its best-rated medical alerts for seniors:

  • MobileHelp Connect is a phone app that allows caregivers to take part in the user’s health and well-being. It offers location tracking, medication reminders, and activity tracking for free. Meanwhile, MobileHelp Connect Premium provides equipment protection, locked-in rates, and numerous discounts for just $5/month. 
  • MDLIVE is another great tool giving you free 24/7 access to a board-certified doctor for a quick consultation. 

With these features in mind, it’s no wonder several medical alert reviews refer to MobileHelp as the number one provider of healthcare services.

PROS:
  • No extra charge for cellular connection
  • A+ rating with the BBB
  • Prorated refunds available
  • US-based monitoring centers
CONS:
  • The Fall Button isn’t compatible with all systems
  • Activation fees apply to some plans
  • Connectivity: Landline, cellular
  • Average response time: 45 seconds or less
  • Base unit coverage: 1,000 ft
  • Monitoring center location: US (Utah & Idaho)
  • Payment plan options: Monthly, quarterly, or semi-annual
  • Cancellations: Free
  • Price: $19.95–$29.95
  • Return policy: 30 days

An industry leader, Bay Alarm Medical combines 70 years of experience with first-rate devices and reliable services to bring you one of the best medical alert systems for 2021 at the lowest price possible. 

With an extensive range of products, this company has a device to meet everyone’s budget and lifestyle. 

In-Home Medical Alert System

Let’s get started with the company’s most traditional and best-rated medical alert system for seniors, the In-Home system.

This comprehensive, affordable, and reliable alert system comes with the following:

  • A home base unit equipped with 1,000 feet of coverage, a 32-hour backup battery, a high-output speaker, and an ultra-sensitive microphone for clear two-way communication (the unit works both with a landline and a cellular network, depending on the connection you have at your home)
  • A waterproof help button
  • A wall emergency call button (the Prefered and the Premium plans come with two and four extra wall buttons, respectively)
  • Battery monitoring and a low-battery warning
  • Coverage for your spouse or someone else in your household (however, an additional button needs to be purchased)
  • Locked-in subscription rates
  • Free Vial of Life with every new subscription—this sheet is the quickest way for the EMS to access your medical information if you’re unconscious or unable to speak

Besides basic home protection, Bay Alarm Medical has more helpful and unique devices, such as these: 

On-the-Go Help Button

The best medical alert system with GPS for active seniors, this portable device can quickly and accurately pinpoint your location. It also can provide your location history and even weather notifications, depending on the plan you choose. 

SOS Smartwatch

This is another portable, water-resistant device featuring GPS tracking and other useful features that will keep you safe wherever you are. Bay Alarm Medical’s smartwatch is yours to keep for a one-time fee of $179.

In-Car Medical Alert

Named 2019 CES Innovation Awards Honoree, this revolutionary solution provides protection and assistance while you’re in the car. Thanks to automatic crash detection and real-time vehicle tracking, driving has never been safer. 

Bundle Packages

Depending on which services you’re interested in, Bay Alarm Medical can bundle alert systems for seniors and tailor them to your needs without exceeding the $40 mark. 

All Bay Alarm Medical systems are aimed at making users’ lives easier. To that end, they even have a phone app that tracks payments as well as plenty of additional upgrades and accessories, including the following:

  • A lockbox
  • Extra help buttons
  • Jewelry-style pendants
  • Fall detection buttons
  • Wall Buttons
  • A protection plan
  • Vial of Life

In addition to advanced, practical devices, Bay Alarm Medical provides complete flexibility, transparency, and, most importantly, unmatched customer support—a feature appreciated in almost all medical alert system reviews of this company. 

So whether you’re looking for 24/7 protection in your home, on the move, or on the road, Bay Alarm Medical has you covered!

PROS:
  • Reputable company
  • Informative website
  • Free face mask with new subscriptions
  • Numerous sales & discounts
CONS:
  • Missing some additional features

5. LifeStation Review

OVERALL RATING 9.6
  • Connectivity: Landline, cellular
  • Average response time: 20 seconds
  • Base unit coverage: 500 ft (600 ft for In-Home device)
  • Monitoring center location: US (New Jersey & Texas)
  • Payment plan options: Monthly, quarterly, or annual
  • Cancellations: Free
  • Price: $21.95–$37.95
  • Return policy: 30 days

Age in peace and maintain your independence with LifeStation’s three top-rated medical alert systems for seniors.

Here they are in more detail:

At Home Medical Alert System

LifeStation At Home, the company’s highest-rated traditional system, offers round-the-clock protection and security for you or your loved ones for just $21.95 a month.

Some of the basic features of this device include the following:

  • A base unit with a loud speaker, sensitive microphone, and large round button with Braille characters, helping hearing and visually impaired users
  • A clear landline connection
  • A 32-hour battery backup in case of power outages
  • 500 feet of coverage from the base unit
  • A small, lightweight, and compact help button (available as a bracelet or pendant)
  • Second person coverage with no added monitoring fee (just $3.99 for an added alert button)
  • Free shipping anywhere in the US

In-Home No Landline Medical Alert System

For homes without a landline, there’s LifeStation’s No Landline alert system—another of the company’s top-selling products.

It has the same features as the At Home system, but it’s operated by AT&T’s 4G wireless network. It covers 600 feet from the base station, providing unparalleled monitoring services in and around the home.

Mobile LTE Medical Alert System With GPS

If you want extra protection while you’re out and about, try LifeStation’s Mobile LTE device. Possibly the most accurate and best GPS medical alert system, this 100% waterproof mobile device has an extended battery life of five days. It also features coverage by AT&T’s fastest and most reliable network—promising to never let you down in your hour of need. 

LifeStation is a transparent, trusted, and reputable company that has been in the business for over 40 years. 

It offers the best monitoring services available from its US-based, CSAA Five Diamond certified monitoring centers. On top of that, it’s completely transparent—there are no contracts to sign and no hidden costs or costly cancelation fees. 

But what really sets LifeStation apart when comparing medical alert systems is its commitment to modernization.

LifeStation is the first company to offer smart tech integration with its alert systems. This is an invaluable tool for families and professional caregivers, especially those looking after seniors with Alzheimer’s and dementia.

To find out where users are in realtime, caregivers just need to ask their Alexa-powered device, “Where’s Mom,” for example, to get the exact location in seconds.

Alternatively, they can use their Find My Loved One service and discover the location of parents, grandparents, or patients just by sending a text message. 

Other services available with this personal emergency response system include:

  • Weekly Wellchecks, which help the elderly stay connected, thus improving their mental health
  • CareAssist Concierge Service, which allows your alert device to contact pharmacies, transport, and meal delivery services
  • LifeStation also cooperates with Uber Health, offering transportation to seniors in need 

The downside is that LifeStation doesn’t offer much in terms of extra accessories, except for optional add-ons, like fall detection and a lockbox. However, what the company lacks in hardware, it makes up for in transparency, innovation, and outstanding service—as verified in over 3,000 positive medical alert systems reviews.

PROS:
  • No lengthy contracts
  • Family-owned business
  • Supports over 240 languages
  • Free US shipping
CONS:
  • You must call to order
  • Refunds might take a while
  • Not many add-ons

6. Medical Guardian Review

OVERALL RATING 9.5
  • Connectivity: Landline, cellular
  • Average response time: 46 seconds
  • Base unit coverage: 1,300 ft
  • Monitoring center location: US
  • Payment plan options: Monthly, quarterly, or annual
  • Cancellations: Free
  • Price: $29.95–$79.95
  • Return policy: 30 days

In our medical alert comparison, we were hard-pressed to find a company with a more diverse offering than Medical Guardian. Selling a total of seven systems, this US-based provider has something for everyone. 

The company has three products available in the at-home category:

Classic Guardian

The first, the Classic Guardian, is the provider’s most traditional, landline-operated device. And at a $29.95 monthly fee, it’s the least expensive of the three. 

It comes with a base unit enabling clear, two-way communication with the monitoring center, as well as a lightweight, waterproof wearable device (subscribers have a choice between medical alert bracelets and pendants).

This device boasts an impressive 1,300 feet of coverage from the base station, meaning you’re protected within and around the house at all times. 

Home Guardian

This device, on the other hand, uses AT&T’s cellular network to connect to the company’s monitoring centers. It offers the same benefits as the Classic Guardian, but it has a shorter range. You only get 600 feet of coverage with this emergency alert system.

Family Guardian

The third and most comprehensive in-home system from Medical Guardian also operates on a cellular connection and has all the in-home solution essentials. The device, however, is further equipped with three safety sensors that monitor your movement and send notifications to caregivers through the Family Guardian app. 

Apart from providing top-notch home systems, Medical Guardian makes it easy for customers to pick the best medical alert system for seniors thanks to its wide range of portable devices:  

Mini Guardian

The company’s latest addition—the Mini Guardian—is small, sleek, and affordable. For $39.95 a month, this device will keep you protected while you’re out and about.

Active Guardian

The Active Guardian works very much like the Mini, except it’s a bit larger in size. This waterproof, portable device has one of the longest battery lives—a great perk for users who don’t always remember to charge their devices. 

Mobile Guardian

This is a two-piece senior monitoring system, described by some Mobile Guardian reviews as unusual because it works both as an in-home and mobile device. It consists of a portable unit with a two-way speaker and GPS tracking, plus a wearable emergency button for seniors that works up to 350 feet from the mobile unit.

Freedom Guardian

The Freedom Guardian is actually a stylish smartwatch, giving you access to MG’s monitoring centers and a slew of other features, like location tracking, text-to-speech messaging, reminders, and a companion app for caregivers.

All Medical Guardian’s mobile alert systems use the most reliable 4G LTE network, GPS, and WiFi tracking to determine your location within minutes, providing 24-hour protection no matter where you are.

But it’s not just about the devices.

Medical Guardian has plenty of extra features, including one of the best and most reliable fall alert systems—available with all MG systems for an additional $10 a month.

Other accessories range from wall buttons to lockboxes and protection plans, although they aren’t compatible with all systems.

Medical Guardian is an excellent choice for seniors and caregivers and not just because of its extensive product lineup or customizable plans. It’s a reliable and dependable company that focuses on innovation and results, but above all, on its customers’ safety and wellbeing. What more can we ask for from one of the highest-rated medical alert system providers?

PROS:
  • No long-term contracts
  • Substantial coverage from the base unit
  • Seven systems available
  • Stellar customer service
CONS:
  • Restocking fees may apply when you cancel
  • A bit costlier than competitors
  • No trial period

7. Philips Lifeline Review

OVERALL RATING 9.5
  • Connectivity: Landline, cellular
  • Average response time: 27–47 seconds
  • Base unit coverage: 500 feet
  • Monitoring center location: US & Canada
  • Payment plan options: Monthly
  • Cancellations: Free
  • Price: $29.95–$58.95
  • Return policy: 30 days

Philips Lifeline was the first company in the US to offer medical alert systems. Almost 50 years later, it’s still an industry leader providing high-quality senior alert devices, outstanding service, and a wide range of functional features.

One of the best, though, is the company’s superior fall detection system, AutoAlert

AutoAlert incorporates advanced technology, including accelerometers, barometric sensors, and finely tuned algorithms. This proprietary equipment provides more accuracy and significantly reduces the number of false alarms that other fall devices are prone to. 

What about the systems themselves?

HomeSafe Standard

Starting at $29.95/month for a landline and $43.95/month for a cellular connection, HomeSafe Standard is Philips Lifeline’s most traditional and least expensive home alert system for seniors

This sophisticated and reliable medical alert system offers many features: 

  • A base unit allowing for crystal-clear, two-way communication
  • A waterproof help button with a long-lasting battery (users can choose between a pendant and wristband—both are light, comfortable, and adjustable)
  • 24/7 access to the company’s fully staffed Response Center
  • A personalized response plan, meaning you decide who the operators call and what action they take
  • Access to Philips Cares, a phone app that connects to your circle of friends and family, shares notifications about your health, and much more

HomeSafe With AutoAlert

If you feel that you need more security, try the HomeSafe with fall detection. 

It offers exactly the same features as the HomeSafe Standard mentioned above in our best medical alert system review, but it’s enhanced with automatic fall detection. 

The cost is also a bit higher: $44.95 and $58.95 for the landline and cellular connection, respectively.

GoSafe 2

Looking for protection on the go? Then opt for the GoSafe 2, one of the best-rated mobile systems. 

This latest innovation from Philips Lifeline incorporates five location technologies, a three-day battery life, and state-of-the-art fall detection. It’s all packed into a small, waterproof, and lightweight neck pendant. 

At $49.95 a month, it’s a bit costlier than other portable elder alert systems on the market, but given all the great features, it’s certainly worth it. 

All of Philips’ alert systems come with no strings attached. You pay month to month, so there are no lengthy contracts or hidden fees. Plus, you can cancel the subscription anytime you want. 

Bear in mind that you must pay a one-time $50 activation fee for the in-home systems and $99.95 for the mobile unit on top of the monthly fee.

The purpose of the extra charge becomes clear, though, when you compare medical alert systems. Philips Lifeline is the oldest, most renowned company with one of the fastest response times in the industry. It provides helpful tools that enhance your and your family’s peace of mind. But more importantly, it gives you the confidence and security to live a full, independent, and active life no matter your age.

PROS:
  • Accurate fall detection included
  • Supports over 140 languages
  • No long-term contract
  • Professional installation available
CONS:
  • One-time activation fee is required
  • Pricier than the competition, our senior medical alert system comparison determined

8. Alert1 Review

OVERALL RATING 9.3
  • Connectivity: Landline
  • Average response time: 45 seconds
  • Base unit coverage: 600 ft (400 ft for fall detection)
  • Monitoring center location: US (Pennsylvania)
  • Payment plan options: Monthly, quarterly, annual, or every 30 months
  • Cancellations: Free
  • Price: $16.95–$49.95
  • Return policy: 30 days

Alert1 offers a variety of trusted medical alert services and devices to meet every senior’s needs.

Its product line consists of three systems: a home system, a mobile device, and a bundle of both with added fall detection. 

In-the-Home Medical Alert

Starting at $16.95, the Alert1’s In-the-Home system comes with these features:

  • A base unit (equipped with a two-way speaker and microphone)
  • A showerproof help button that works up to 600 feet from the stationary unit

Operating through a landline, the system connects you to one of the company’s US-based monitoring centers when you press the help button. Once you’re connected to a live operator, they will assist you based on the emergency plan you’ve set up beforehand.

On-the-Go Medical Alert

Don’t have a landline or internet connection? Not a problem! Alert1 also has an On-the-Go package.

This mobile emergency alert system has built-in location tracking, a loud speaker, a microphone, and a battery life of a whopping 30 days. 

On-the-Go + In-the-Home + Fall Detection 

Finally, you can opt for the all-in-one bundle deal. This comprehensive package includes the mobile device, the in-the-home alert system, and fall detection—all for less than $50 a month. 

Combining all the products into one convenient package, you get extra security, protection, and peace of mind both in and outside the house.

If you’re looking for reliable medical alert systems with fall detectors, you’ll find them with Alert1. All the devices come with optional fall detection for an added fee of around $10 (depending on which payment option you choose). 

Users can choose between a monthly, quarterly, annual, or 30-month plan. Although the company doesn’t require you to sign up for a lengthy contract, you’ll get a lot of perks if you subscribe to one of the longer plans:

  • Free activation
  • Free use for the first two months
  • Free shipping 
  • Coverage for another user from the same household at a considerable discount

And that’s not all! 

Alert1 has plenty of accessories to choose from: 

  • A wall-mounted alert button
  • A medication reminder 
  • An emergency lockbox
  • An extra base unit (Voice Extender)
  • An extra help button 
  • A smoke detector 
  • A surge guard
  • The Fall Protection Package (equipped with two wall buttons, two motion-sensing night lights, adhesive tub strips, and a set of corner guards)

The company also sells stylish accessories, such as alarm button wristbands, lightweight medical ID bracelets, and jewelry-style fall detection devices.

Although Alert1 has incredibly functional and easy-to-use devices, customer support is where the company really shines. This top-rated provider has multiple TMA 5 Diamond Certified monitoring centers across the US. Not only are these centers staffed with highly qualified operators, but they also support 190 languages—an impressive number for any company. 

Combined with free cancellations, a hassle-free setup, and 24/7 protection, there’s no reason why you wouldn’t pick Alert1 as your go-to provider for the best medical alert system for the elderly.

PROS:
  • A wide selection of upgrades
  • Free cancelation
  • A+ rating with the BBB
  • Low-battery detection warning
CONS:
  • 30-day refund doesn’t cover the activation fee
  • Mobile and fall detection devices are only available as pendants
  • Limited range for fall detection pendant

9. QMedic Review

OVERALL RATING 9.2
  • Connectivity: Cellular
  • Average response time: 30 seconds
  • Base unit coverage: 800–1,000 ft
  • Monitoring center location: US (Utah & Idaho)
  • Payment plan options: Monthly or annual
  • Cancellations: Free
  • Price: $30.00–$45.00
  • Return policy: 30 days

QMedic is more than just one of the top medical alert systems available right now. Developed by MIT scientists, QMedic systems also track activity, compliance, and sleep patterns, providing precious insight into your loved one’s health and wellbeing.  

The company offers two systems: a cellular and a mobile plan. 

Cellular Medical Alert System

This system has several features:

  • A clear, two-way communication base station 
  • A portable help button: It boasts a two-year battery life and 1,000 feet of coverage from the base unit. Small, light, and waterproof, this device doesn’t need charging, which means you never have to take it off. On top of that, it’s comfortable and stylish, particularly the wristband, which has unsurprisingly been rated as the best medical alert bracelet out there. 
  • Self-testing function: The system self-tests and checks battery levels of both the base unit and the wearable device 24 hours a day. Once the battery on either unit is running low, the company will promptly send a replacement. 
  • Personalized response: This means you decide how you want the operator to proceed when you press the help button and who you would like them to call. Note that you can edit your emergency contact list at any time at no additional cost. 
  • Activity monitoring: This is the most unique feature in this elder alert system. The device tracks movement, voice calls, activity, and sleep schedules. When it detects abnormal or unusual activity—like no movement for a certain amount of time—it sends notifications to caregivers. Notifications are easily accessed in real-time through the Caregiver Dashboard.
  • Compliance tracking: The device tracks whether or not the user is wearing the help button, an indispensable feature since alert buttons only work when they’re worn.

The only downside to the system is that subscribers must have steady cellular coverage. QMedic did have a landline-operated device, but at the time this medical alert system review was written, that system was sold out. 

Mobile GPS Medical Alert System

For seniors who like to be on the move, QMedic provides a fully portable device that you can take anywhere. Available as a neck pendant only, the device has an incredible 14-day battery life, offers advanced GPS tracking, and is water-resistant.

QMedic is a newer company, but it provides all the essentials of the best medical alert systems and more.

Its US-based, UL-certified monitoring centers are incredibly fast and helpful. Furthermore, the devices are user-friendly and reasonably priced, and they deliver peace of mind for both seniors and caregivers.

The one thing that this company lacks is fall detection. These devices can be prone to false alarms—something neither users nor their caregivers want—which is why the company doesn’t include them in its systems.

However, if you consider this an important feature, or if you’re in the market for the best medical alert system with fall detection, give LifeFone or Philips Lifeline a try.

PROS:
  • 24/7 UL-listed care centers
  • Personalized response
  • No contracts, no hidden fees
  • Two-week battery life on portable device
CONS:
  • No fall detection
  • No add-ons
  • Limited payment plans
  • Connectivity: Landline, cellular
  • Average response time: Approximately 20 seconds
  • Base unit coverage: 300 ft (600 ft for cellular)
  • Monitoring center location: US
  • Payment plan options: Monthly, quarterly, or annual
  • Cancellations: Free
  • Price: $29.95–$39.99
  • Return policy: 6 months

As a company that has spent the last 140 years making sure people are safe and protected, ADT offers some of the most reliable and competitively priced medical alert systems for seniors

The company’s Health & Senior Safety product line may not be particularly diverse, but seniors are sure to find a system to suit their lifestyles and needs from its three available products. 

Basic System

Do you spend most of your time in the house and have a standard landline connection? Then you would benefit the most from ADT’s Basic system.

This system provides all the essentials, starting from a base unit with a two-way connection to the company’s operators to a help button in the form of a waterproof medical alert necklace or wristband.

The base unit only covers a distance of 300 feet, which may not seem like a lot, but it’s typically enough to keep you protected inside the house and around the yard.

The device also offers home temperature monitoring, which isn’t considered a life-saving feature, but it’s useful, nonetheless.

Plus System

If you want more freedom in your movements, try the Plus system.

The base unit in this senior emergency alert system covers twice the distance as the Basic device, i.e., 600 feet. It also shows time, temperature, and battery and signal levels on a clear LED display. Furthermore, this comprehensive system offers fall detection in its $35.99 monthly fee. 

The combination of simple and functional features, as well as the close range, make these two home systems excellent for seniors.

On-the-Go System

ADT has a device for seniors who prefer an active lifestyle, as well. This system is a portable unit with built-in GPS tracking that will keep you safe wherever you go.

For added security, consider adding fall detection to the package. All medical alert fall-detection system reviews agree this is a valuable tool, especially for seniors prone to falls and accidents.

Apart from first-rate devices, this company is known for its fast response time and availability

Operators in its nationwide monitoring centers can be reached 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, and the calls are answered within 20 seconds.

With ADT, there’s no need for long-term contracts—you can pay month-to-month, although quarterly and annual plans come with considerable discounts. If a longer contract feels like too much of a commitment, don’t worry. You can still cancel payments for any of these medical alert devices for seniors anytime with no additional charges. 

What’s more, thanks to the ADT FOREVERate, subscription costs will always remain the same, and there is a lifetime warranty on all equipment—another great perk.

ADT’s medical alert systems can’t be described as especially innovative or unique, but they are some of the most reliable, affordable, and responsive devices on the market. 

So if you’re looking for a system with a lifetime warranty, steady rates, and fast response times that won’t let you down at home or on the move, ADT has the best medical alert devices for you. 

PROS:
  • Fast response times
  • Live chat available
  • Flexible payment plans
  • No long-term contracts
CONS:
  • Average coverage from base unit
  • No self-testing option
  • Not many add-on options

Everything You Need to Know About the Best Medical Alert Systems 

What exactly is a medical alert system, and what does it do? Do you really need one? And how do you choose the best one from so many available options?

Our detailed guide will answer these questions and more!

What Are Medical Alert Systems?

Medical alert systems are devices—usually consisting of a base unit and a wearable element—that provide seniors with help in the event of a fall or medical emergency. 

During an emergency, press the call button on the medical alert bracelet or pendant, and you’ll be connected to a trained operator who will get you the help you need as quickly as possible.

These operators are available 24/7 and have all your info, including your medical history, your allergies, and any treatments or medications you might be on. They will evaluate the situation and decide on the best course of action.

Let’s say you’ve taken a slip and just need some help getting up. In this case, the operator will contact a neighbor, friend, or family member to come and help you out. They will also stay on the line with you until help arrives. 

How Are Medical Alert Devices Different From Calling 911?

Let’s look at the same situation mentioned above.

When you call 911, the dispatcher will immediately send an EMS unit to your address regardless of the severity of your injury or condition. After dispatching a unit to your house, they will end the call and tend to other emergencies and callers. The EMS unit will most likely have to break down the door, causing considerable damage to your property in the process, which in this situation would be completely unnecessary.

With a medical alert system, an EMS unit is sent only if absolutely necessary—for instance, if you’re unresponsive or the operator can’t reach anyone on your emergency list.

Plus, the top medical alert systems will come with plenty of extra features, from fall detection to location tracking, which you can’t get with a basic cell phone or a call to 911.

Who Should Buy a Medical Alert System?

The main purpose of these systems is to help you when you need it, but they can actually do so much more than that. They provide you with security and the chance to have an independent, active, and stress-free life.

So who can benefit the most from med alert systems? 

  • Active seniors: A mobile unit, especially the best medical alert system with GPS tracking, is a great solution for older adults who still want to enjoy the outdoors and an independent lifestyle. 
  • Seniors who want to stay in their current home: Thanks to medical alert systems, older adults can age happily in place without the constant presence of a caregiver.  
  • Seniors who have dementia, Alzheimer’s, or other age-related cognitive conditions: Medical alert systems with GPS help caregivers easily locate you if you wander or get lost and disoriented.
  • Seniors with high-risk medical conditions: Even the most basic system can prevent serious injury or death, particularly among seniors with heart disease or other high-risk conditions.

How to Choose the Best Medical Alert System for You

Here are the most important aspects to consider when buying a senior medical alert system, whether it’s for you or for someone in your family.

Mobile vs. In-Home Alert Systems 

The first decision you have to make is choosing the type of system. Med alert systems usually fall into two categories: home-based and mobile. 

Home medical alert systems consist of a stationary base and a wearable device. 

The base unit has a speaker and microphone for easy, two-way, hands-free communication with a dispatcher at the monitoring center. 

The wearable device, on the other hand, is a small help button that you can wear around your neck or wrist. These devices are usually lightweight, waterproof, and can communicate with the base unit within distances of up to 1,300 feet. This means you’re covered even if you’re taking a stroll in the backyard or live in a larger home.

An in-home alert system for seniors uses a landline telephone connection but can work with a cellular connection as well.

For most older adults, a classic in-home system is the best way to go. It’s reliable, the connection is clear, and the device is always on because you don’t need to charge it.

However, if you’re an active senior, investing in a mobile system is something to consider.

Mobile alert systems come with many advantages. They’re portable, so you can use them anywhere with good cellular coverage. Plus, they have GPS tracking, allowing medical services or a caregiver to pinpoint your exact location.

The only downside to mobile systems is that you have to charge the devices.

Try to find a device that you won’t have to charge very often or a unit that comes with a replaceable battery. Some mobile medical alert systems are equipped with an alarm reminding you that your battery needs charging, making this process easier for forgetful users.

Some users also report that mobile devices are bulkier than pendants or bracelets. However, thanks to advances in technology, there are now lighter and smaller mobile units that can fit in your purse or pocket or be clipped on your belt. 

For seniors who can’t decide between the two, there are dual systems that combine at-home and mobile devices for full protection. 

Find a Quality Company 

The next step is finding a trustworthy medical alert company

Here are some tips to help you identify a reliable manufacturer.

  • Transparency: Does the company post all its fees on the site? Do its sales representatives give clear answers to all your questions? Does its website include both positive and negative comments by customers? If the answers to any of these questions are no, then you’re likely dealing with a shady company. 
  • Reputation: Look at reviews by customers and the Better Business Bureau. When it comes to medical alert systems, ratings like these offer a better understanding of the company so you can decide whether it’s trustworthy or not. It’s also a good idea to look for certifications—such as TMA’s Five Diamond certification and the Electronic Security Association—to check the company’s dedication to quality and safety.
  • Look at the return policy: Before you buy a medical alert system for yourself or a family member, carefully read the terms and conditions, particularly in the area of refunds and returns. Try to find medical alert companies that allow you to return equipment or cancel a subscription or service without additional charges. Steer clear of companies that require you to sign lengthy contracts, and focus on flexible plans instead. 
  • Check locations of monitoring centers: Stick to companies with monitoring centers in North America for the fastest access to trained agents. In addition to being located in the US, the company should have trained staff consisting of nurses or medical supervisors who can offer their expertise, especially during high-risk calls. 

Comfort and Convenience

For a medical alert system to work properly, it has to be worn at all times. This means the wearable elements or mobile device must be comfortable, light, and waterproof so they can be worn in the shower, where most slips and falls happen. 

If the medical alert pendant or bracelet feels too cumbersome or restrictive, try exchanging it or getting a refund. 

Extra Features 

Advanced medical alert systems come with a wide range of additional features, from intruder alerts to consults with board-certified doctors. These are some of the most common and useful features:

  • Automatic fall detection: This is one of the most common and helpful features of alert systems. Medical alert systems with fall detection have built-in sensors that detect falls and automatically call the dispatch center. Companies usually offer this feature for a monthly fee of around $15, although prices vary.

You should remember, though, that this technology isn’t 100% reliable. The device is prone to false alarms and might register a fall even when you’ve only lost your balance or dropped the pendant by accident while you slept. However, if you’re one of the 25% of Americans over 65 who experience falls every year, it might be wise to invest in a fall alert system.

  • Caregiver tracking: Depending on the system, this extra feature can track your location, monitor battery life, and notify your caregiver when you leave a predetermined area, such as your home. The latter feature, known as geofencing, is a handy tool, particularly if you have Alzheimer’s or dementia. Namely, it allows your caregiver to determine your exact location, or at the very least, your last known whereabouts. 
  • Medication reminder: Having your base or mobile unit remind you when it’s time to take your medication can be extremely helpful, especially if you live with a chronic condition or have a complex medication schedule.
  • Wall buttons: Wall buttons are battery-powered and can be placed anywhere in the house, including high-risk areas like the bathroom, stairs, or by the bed. This emergency button is a great backup solution if you’ve damaged or lost your wearable device or simply don’t feel like wearing it.
  • Lockbox: A safety lockbox is used to store an extra key so that emergency services won’t have to break down the door to enter your home. A simple solution like this can save you a lot of money in terms of damaged property, as well as the hassle of home repairs. 

Value for Money  

When you buy an alert system, you aren’t paying for the actual device.

Instead, you pay a monthly fee for the devices and services you’re using, which usually starts at $20. If you’re interested in medical alert systems with no monthly fee, most companies have an annual or semi-annual payment plan, which typically comes with discounted prices and lower subscription rates.

Note that in addition to monitoring fees, companies usually charge extra for additional features and services, such as fall detection and add-on equipment. 

The most important thing is to make sure that you know all about any extra charges before you sign the contract so that you won’t get any surprises later on. 

Some Final Tips to Consider When Purchasing One of the Best Medical Alert Systems

  • Whether you have a home-based or mobile system, be sure to check the connection immediately after installation to see if everything is working. 
  • It’s a good idea to get a base unit with a built-in battery backup in case of power outages. 
  • If English isn’t your first language, look for companies that offer several language options. Some providers support over 200 languages. 
  • Consider plans that allow for multiple contacts to be added to your emergency list, just in case. 
  • A word of caution for caregivers: If you’re thinking of buying one of the top-rated medical alert systems for your parents, grandparents, or other family members and friends, consider their needs. A senior alert system isn’t a gift, so make sure you discuss the purchase beforehand. 

Final Thoughts 

Medical alert systems are the ideal solution for older adults who want to age in place, preserve their independence, and continue to lead active lives. They’re also an excellent tool for caregivers, providing them with security and peace of mind regarding their loved ones’ health and well-being. 

If you’re looking for the best medical alert system, our reviews should give you all the information you need to choose the right device. We want you to have the confidence to continue with your daily activities knowing that you’re protected 24 hours a day. 

FAQs

How do medical alert systems work?

Medical alert systems are incredibly easy to operate. 

  1. In a medical emergency, push the button on the bracelet, pendant, or mobile unit. 
  2. Once you press the button, a call is sent to the response center.
  3. The call is answered by trained operators who will do everything they can to help you, from summoning your family or friends to calling 911, if necessary. 

Where can you go to buy medical alert systems?

Major retailers like Walmart sell alert systems, but in our experience, it’s always better to buy from the manufacturer directly. This way, you can get help with the selection, installation, and operation of the system from professionals, as well as a number of upgrades.

Furthermore, most of the devices sold at retailers fall in the category of unmonitored medical alert systems. In other words, you just get the device without access to trained and dedicated professionals operating at monitoring centers.

Does Medicare cover medical alert systems?

Medicare doesn’t usually cover medical alert systems. However, some seniors may receive coverage under Medicare Part C if they can prove that the system is medically necessary. Check your insurance plan to see if you’re covered or not.

Does AARP recommend a medical alert system?

Even though AARP (the American Association of Retired Persons) highly recommends the use of medical alert systems, it doesn’t endorse a particular system. 

What is the best medical alert system?

Each of the systems listed in our reviews above meets all the criteria of a high-quality, functional, and safe system. However, to find the best medical alert system for you, you need to consider your individual needs. Decide what kind of device would benefit you the most and then look for one that matches your requirements and lifestyle.