Well almost : – ) Some medical alert monitoring companies, like our top-rated LifeStation, have a feature that you may not be aware of. It allows you to purchase one system and have service for two people! That’s the perfect solution for mom and dad living independently together at home.
So how does it work? Each company handles this situation a little differently and there are some clear advantages one may have over another. The two primary differences are price and level of service.
Some companies will charge you a monthly fee for the additional button, while others charge a one-time flat rate. The best offerings are from companies that treat the other medical alert button as if it were a separate system. They do this by putting the additional medical alert button on a separate zone.
If you have a home alarm, you may be familiar with the term zone. Basically, it’s like a separate channel on a TV. The TV acts like your medical alert monitoring console and the channels on the TV are like the zones. When you switch to a different channel you get a different station. When the medical alert system sends a signal from a different zone (or your dad’s pendant instead of your mom’s), the monitoring station will get different information on their screen – your dad’s information.
Companies that don’t treat the pendants or buttons like separate zones will only know that the emergency medical alert came from 1234 Anywhere Street, but not know who is in actual need of care. If your dad or mom is able to speak to the medical alert monitoring company, they can identify themselves to the operator, who can then search for the proper information about your loved one. If they can not speak, then more generic information will be given to the first responders and to you when they notify you of the medical alert alarm. That could be frustrating simply not knowing who is in need.
So how do the companies we reviewed handle this service option? Well they all offer it, which is good. LifeStation does identify the two buttons separately while one representative at Life Alert said they do identify them separately while another said they do not. Philips Lifeline said the button users are identified by speaking and Walgreen’s Ready Response and ADT Companion Service or ADT Medical Alert both said that they were unsure.
Do not think that cost will help you solve the mystery of conflicting information. As you can see from our research, pricing is all over the board.