Personal Emergency Response Systems, A Definitive Guide


A personal emergency response system, or PERS, is an alert system that connects individuals to a 24-hour response center with the push of a button. Trained staff located at the response center can then quickly evaluate the situation and take appropriate action.

How a Personal Emergency Response System Works

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The typical equipment included in a system consists of a receiver base unit that can plug into a telephone jack and a small push-button transmitter that is usually worn around your neck or wrist. In the majority of systems, the base unit console serves as a communication system that directly connects you with the response center. It’s similar to a more powerful version of speaker mode on a traditional telephone. For instance, if you fall in the bathroom or kitchen, but the console is in the living room, simply push the button on the transmitter and easily converse with staff at the response center. The range of communication depends on a variety of factors, such as the size and layout of your home. Larger houses may require more than one base unit console. While this is the case for many traditional systems, a system like Lively Mobile2 operates on a nationwide cellular network and allows you to contact the response center from anywhere. It doesn’t even require you to be within a specific range of your home.

Some companies have a designated response center with their own staff, while others contract the service out. Companies that offer nationwide service generally have a number of response centers located in different areas of the country. For example, you may live in Florida, but your response center may be located in California. Smaller, more localized companies are generally operated through social service agencies or hospitals.

Most service centers will ask you to provide detailed information, such as your medical history, allergies, doctors, and other information related to your medical needs. They will also ask you to provide a list of personal contacts and their phone numbers. When you alert the center, your name and information will immediately pop up on a screen. The responding staff will follow protocol based upon the provided information. For example, if you designated that your son or daughter be contacted each time you hit the alert button, the staff will do this. Based upon the circumstances surrounding the alert, staff will decide whether emergency responders are necessary, or if a contact should be called to assist you. In the event they hear nothing after you have alerted them, they will immediately call 911. After emergency responders have been contacted, they will then follow the notification protocol.

Who can Benefit from a PERS?

Personal emergency response systems are great for senior citizens who live alone. However, PERS services aren’t just for seniors. Various individuals can benefit from the services offered by a medical alert company. These alert systems are also great for anyone who is disabled, sick, lives alone, or has a medical condition. This may include people with a risk of falling, those with limited mobility, stroke survivors, people with heart conditions, or even someone with a communication barrier.

A PERS can offer assistance in non-medical emergencies too, such as a fire or home invasion. Whether the situation is medically related or not, a personal emergency response system can offer an extra layer of protection to anyone in the event of an emergency. For example, Lively Mobile2 can be used for countless scenarios. Maybe you are lost, locked out of your home, or in an uneasy situation. With the press of a button, Lively Mobile2 is there to help you out.

Because personal emergency response systems are typically associated with the elderly, many do not consider that they can be a great option for younger users as well. Think about this…you’re in a parking lot late at night and you spot a suspicious character briskly coming toward you. You are uncertain whether this person means harm or is simply is in a rush to get to their own car. Why play the guessing game with your safety when you can simply press the button on your Lively Mobile2 and speak with a friendly Urgent Response Agent who is highly-trained and prepared to take action and help you if something were to happen? The Urgent Response Agent can stay on the line with you until you’re safely in your car or, in the case of an emergency, they can confirm your location with the Lively Mobile2’s patented GPS technology and send appropriate aid.

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Cost of Personal Emergency Response Systems

The majority of companies lease out the necessary equipment on a monthly basis, though some companies may offer the option to directly purchase the equipment. Just as there are many services available, there are also a wide variety of pricing plans. For instance, many traditional companies compete with each other and imitate each other’s price plans. The Urgent Response Service on the Lively Mobile2, however, is less expensive per month than most traditional plans. You should closely compare prices and services of companies before making a selection and always read the fine print.

Keep in mind that most health insurance plans, including Medicaid and Medicare, won’t typically pay for the costs associated with a medical alert system. Some PERS companies, however, will offer discounted rates for long-term agreements or subsidize the equipment costs for low-income individuals.

What to Look for in a PERS

What you should look for when searching for a personal emergency response system will largely depend upon your particular circumstances and preferences. For example, you may need a system that offers greater range and mobility. In this case, you should look for a PERS like the Lively Mobile2, which operates on a cellular network. The Lively Mobile2 device can travel with you virtually anywhere. It is even waterproof, so it can be worn in the shower or out in the rain. Some other questions you may want to ask are:

Is the response center open 24/7?
What is the average response time?
What kind of training does the response staff receive?
What services and features are available?
Which services require an additional fee?
Can I keep the system if I move?

Other things you might want to look for when shopping for a personal emergency response system are service and product warranties, free trial periods, simple pricing plans, and friendly, reliable customer service. One way to investigate your various options for a medical alert system or PERS is to research them online. Be sure to also look at customer reviews and see what other consumers have to say about each service. Watch out for services that have complex pricing plans, hard-sell tactics that insist on home sales visits, and companies that resist offering information or give only vague answers to your questions. The company you select should be friendly, easy to understand, and completely open about their company and the services that they offer.

Ultimately, true peace or mind is priceless. Choosing the appropriate personal emergency response system is not a decision to be taken lightly. Call one of our friendly Lively Mobile2 Experts now at 888-218-6587 with any questions you may have or click below to purchase your Lively Mobile2 today.

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