Philips Cares Lifeline Review

Philips Lifeline HomeSafe Standard Medical Alert System

Philips Lifeline Logo


Who is Philips Lifeline - Philips Cares? 

Lifeline Systems, Inc. was started in 1972 by gerontologist, Dr. Andrew Dibner and his wife, Susan Dibner, who was a sociologist. Dr. Dibner started developing the medical alert system technology in the early 1970s. By the late '70s they began selling their Lifeline System in the U.S. and Canada. In 2006, Philips acquired Lifeline Systems and the company name became Philips Lifeline. This allowed the company to reach more families across the U.S. with their services.

Philips Lifeline claims to be the very first provider of medical alert systems and services in North America and since 1983, they have served over 7.5 million people. Philips Lifeline is headquartered in Framingham, MA. Their medical alert response center is available 24/7 and is staffed with professionally trained multilingual call center agents. 

What Philips Cares Can Do For You

In 2019, Philips introduced Philips Cares, a product which will allow you to monitor your loved one's well-being and stay on top of their day-to-day care. Philips Cares is the evolution of Lifeline, aimed at supporting both seniors and their families through the aging journey. Philips Cares enables care circles to stay in touch, to have and share relevant information about their older loved one, and see interactions with the Lifeline service. Philips Cares also helps to keep everyone on the same page, and aims to lessen the stress and burden that families can feel when caring for an aging family member. As caregiving in the US evolves, there can be many people involved in someone's care. Philips looks to grow beyond the senior, and support their entire support system.

Review Summary

Philips Lifeline medical alert service provides a comprehensive medical alert device product with emergency response offerings and an informative website that is backed by the Phillips name. Their core product line includes: HomeSafe Standard, HomeSafe with AutoAlert and GoSafe2.

They offer additional services such as a caregiving monitoring digital platform called Philips Cares which is great for seniors and their families. They also offer many outstanding features such as professional installation, automatic fall detection, and GPS location services. 


Philips Lifeline's service options include:

1.HomeSafe Standard: In-home medical alert system that can be used with or without a landline with their cellular version. The products you will receive with this system are the in-home communicator base unit and either the pendant or wristband (whichever you prefer). The monthly fee for the landline version will cost less than the cellular model. 

2.HomeSafe with AutoAlert: Their HomeSafe Standard system that includes fall detection which Philips Lifeline refers to as AutoAlert. It can be used with or without a landline. When the system senses a fall, it will automatically send a help call to the monitoring center. Your system will include the same communicator base unit as the HomeSafe Standard, but with an AutoAlert pendant to be worn around your neck. You can choose the landline or cellular connection type when you order. They will take care of the cell connection option for you, so you won't receive a separate bill from the cellular provider.

3.GoSafe2: In-home and on-the-go system with automatic fall detection with no base station needed to set-up. It is a single piece system with two-way voice and GPS using five different location detection technologies. It comes with AutoAlert fall detection which Philips claims is the most proven fall detection technology on the U.S. market today. The system needs good coverage by AT&T's wireless network to function properly. Included in your purchase is the GoSafe2 Mobile button, charger and quick set-up guide.

4. Philips Cares: Philips Cares is the new caregiving management app used to support the Philips Lifeline system. First, you will be asked to create a care circle which is a group of family and friends who actively participate in your loved one's care. You will manage who will receive alerts and respond when help is needed. You can also share pictures and notes with the care circle team. You can check stats on your loved one such as mood, diet, mobility, memory and social interaction. This is a free offering to anyone who has Philips Lifeline medical alert monitoring service. 



Pros

Professional system installation (only if needed), no long-term contracts, optional Philips Lifeline AutoAlert fall detector, many advanced system options and automatic weekly tests of the console to the central monitoring station. Philips Lifeline also offers a free caregiving platform for customers called Philips Cares. Special discount offered to Medical Alert Advice readers.

Cons

Higher monthly charge than some providers and higher priced options compared to other companies, activation fees, equipment not UL listed (ETL listed instead), and they discontinued their activity monitoring option. They do not have a TMA Five Diamond Certified monitoring center. Not carbon or smoke detection options at this time.

Rating: 4



 
 

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Compare Device Features:

Pros & Cons To Consider

Philips Lifeline Logo How did Philips Cares Lifeline do?
Price
Philips Cares Lifeline Review

Cost for Equipment

Activation fees start at $50 for the HomeSafe system but can be waived

Cost Per Month

Monthly fees start at $29.95

Advance Payment Discounts

No, none at this time

Monitoring Agreement Term

Month-to-month. Can cancel anytime.

Repairs or Replacement Charges

None, unless you lose it, then replacement costs can range from $50-$80 depending on which system you choose - plus shipping.
Cancellation Policy & Discounts
Philips Cares Lifeline Review

Cancel at Any Time

Yes. Shipping and previously paid months not refunded. They do provide a prepaid shipping label to return equipment upon your cancellation.

Senior Discount

No

Other Discounts

Yes, they offer a military discount & AARP discount. The AARP discount is 15%. The exact amount of the military discount unknown (we were told between 10-30%). Ask to speak to the loyalty department to get the exact discount amount.
Equipment
Philips Cares Lifeline Review

Approximate Button Range in Typical Home

100-200 ft for the HomeSafe Standard system with landline connection. Can do voice extension if you have a landline and that will broaden the range. Wireless unit works a longer distance, but exact numbers were not given.

Watch/Button Battery Life

18-month battery

What Happens if I Lose Power

30 hours of battery backup

Is the Watch/Button Waterproof

Yes

How Can The Button Be Worn

Pendant or wrist, depending on device selected.

UL Certified Equipment

No, but Listed by ETL (an OSHA Nationally Recognized Test Laboratory) to UL Standard 1637 - Home Healthcare Signaling Equipment and FDA registered.

Does The System Automatically Test Itself To The Monitoring Center

Yes, the system is automatically tested weekly.

24 Hour Technical & Customer Support

Customer service available 6 days a week:
- Monday - Friday: 8am-10pm EST
- Saturday: 8am - 6pm EST

Monitoring Station
Philips Cares Lifeline Review

TMA Five Diamond Certified Monitoring Center

No, but their dispatchers are EMD certified

Typical Response Time When Button Pressed

Approximately 20 seconds
Other Options & Information
Philips Cares Lifeline Review

How Fast Does System Ship

Equipment shipped same day

Do You Need Separate Systems For Mom & Dad

No. $10.00/month (or more) for additional button for anyone living in your home.
Optional Advanced Features
Philips Cares Lifeline Review

Activity or Inactivity Monitoring

No

Senior Fall Detection

Yes with the HomeSafe with AutoAlert system and GoSafe2 options.

Cellular or No Phone Line

Yes with the HomeSafe Standard with cellular connection and GoSafe2 options.

Non-GPS Mobile Alert System For Protection On The Go

No

Smoke or Carbon Monoxide Protection

No

GPS Medical Alert Tracking System

Yes with GoSafe2.
Special Offers
Philips Cares Lifeline Review

Special Offers For Our Visitors

DISCLOSURE: We may receive referral fees from this company for purchases or inquiries made by you. Thanks to your support, we can maintain the website & offer you special discounts, at no cost to you.

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Monthly Costs and Fees

Philips Lifeline pricing and monthly fees vary according to the medical alert package you choose. All packages have a one-time activation fee plus shipping fees ranging from $19.95 for a self-installation kit to $99.95 if you choose to use their professional installation services.

Philips Lifeline's monthly rates are slightly higher than other medical alert companies out there. We have seen some landline monthly rates go as low as $19.99 a month without any activation fees, but many times Philips has special offers that waive activation and shipping charges. We suggest calling or using the chat feature when purchasing and using coupon code X2HW for free shipping and no activation fee. 

They also offer Philips Cares caregiving management service as a free add-on to all their subscribers. You can cancel anytime if you are not satisfied with their service. 

Philips Lifeline System Cost Per Month Activation Shipping for Self-Install Shipping & Professional Install
HomeSafe Standard Landline $29.95 $50.00 $19.95 $99.00
HomeSafe Standard Cellular $43.95 $50.00 $19.95 $99.00
HomeSafe AutoAlert Landline $44.95 $50.00 $19.95 $99.00
HomeSafe AutoAlert Cellular $58.95 $50.00 $19.95 $99.00
GoSafe 2 $49.95 $99.95 $19.95 $99.00
Philips Cares $0.00 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
 


What We Like About Philips Lifeline - Philips Cares

Can Be Installed By Company - Although these systems are typically very easy to install yourself (see our Basic Installation & Set-Up video) your aging parent might find it convenient to have it professionally installed, especially if you live a long distance from your loved one. Keep in mind, you will be paying extra for this option vs. the self-installation. 

No Long-Term Contracts - Customers can pay month-to-month and do not have to commit to a long-term contract. 

Has Different Equipment Options - Lifeline's medical alert system has different consoles, medical alert pendants and watch styles to choose from. We've broken down prices for the basic equipment as well as the different service options. 

Automatic Weekly Tests - The medical alert device's console will automatically test every week to the monitoring station. This means, if there is a problem with your connection or perhaps the console has become unplugged, Philips Lifeline will alert the user to the problem, so they can resolve it quickly. Some companies offer no automatic call testing at all, so this is an added bonus. 

AutoAlert Fall Detector - If your aging loved one is at an increased risk of falling due to poor balance or a history of falls, or if you are afraid, they may fall and have no one there to help, having automatic fall detection is a great feature. If your loved one falls and cannot push their medical emergency button, the device will automatically call to the monitoring center for help. Having quick access to emergency responders offers the subscriber safety and peace of mind. Philips has the optional AutoAlert fall detection pendant which can help in these situations.

Wireless Cellular Option - More and more people are dropping their land-line phone services to save money. Also, landlines are becoming less reliable in sending help conditions to the monitoring center. Philips Lifeline offers a cellular medical alert system in case you are without traditional land-line phone service or just would like better reliability. This cell option makes the medical alert system more accessible in a variety of situations.

GoSafe2 System - This is a premium system that offers protection while at home or on the go. It includes the AutoAlert fall detector, no-phone line mobile cellular capabilities, assisted GPS tracking along with other locating technologies, two-way voice communication, and a locating beacon.  With the GoSafe2 system, no base station is needed.

Philips Cares Service - All Philips Lifeline customers will receive free access to Philips Cares, Philips' latest caregiving tool. You will be able to manage your loved one's care all within this new digital platform.
 

What We Dislike About Philips Lifeline - Philips Cares

No Activity Monitoring - Some medical alert companies offer a feature called activity monitoring. It allows you to know if your loved one has been active each day. The user must press a medical alert button once in every 24-hour period or more advanced systems use door contacts, motion sensors and bed sensors to detect no or irregular activity patterns. Activity monitoring allows you peace of mind each day. Philips Lifeline used to offer this service but does not offer it anymore, which is disappointing. 

Equipment Not UL Listed -
UL certifies, validates, tests, and inspects many products you use daily such as your coffee maker, hair dryer, microwave and so on. Cheaper imports do not meet UL standards, which makes an important distinction.  It is a bit surprising that Lifeline did not have their equipment listed by UL but instead chose ETL, which is less known here in the U.S but still is a highly regarded third party listing service. 

No Discounts For Advanced Payments - Monthly payments are your only option that Philips Lifeline offers at this time. The convenience of quarterly or annual payments can be desirable, especially if you can receive a discount. We have seen companies give one month free for paying annually which is certainly an added perk. 

Some Pricing May Vary Depending on Where You Look or Call - Philips Lifeline sells directly to consumers but also through a network of partners including in-home care service providers, assisted living facilities, health care professionals and hospitals. Monthly fees may vary based upon who you order your service through. We also found that when we spoke with Philips Lifeline, that although there were activation fees and shipping costs, these fees could be waived so be sure to ask.

No Carbon Monoxide or Smoke Detection - Every home should be equipped with carbon monoxide and smoke alarms whether stand alone or part of a system. Even though Philips Lifeline does not carry these features, you should have these products installed or purchase them from your local hardware store or home center retailer. 

Monitoring Center is Not TMA Five Diamond Certified - Medical Alert Advice prefers for response centers to be TMA Five Diamond Certified. Not only does it ensure the operators are consistently trained, they are randomly inspected and committed to high levels of service. Currently, Philips Lifeline does not carry this distinction. 

What Others Are Saying About Philips Lifeline - Philips Cares

Philips Lifeline medical alert service has user reviews that can be submitted through their website for each one of their products. Although reviews that are displayed on a company's website tend to be biased or possibly filtered, we did see some honest feedback, with the Philips Lifeline ratings mostly positive. 

During our search for Philips Lifeline reviews, we found one user who complained that the GoSafe wearable alert was bulky and uncomfortable to wear. Others on the site seem to be quite happy with the automatic fall detection feature and claim it saved their loved one's life. They are also grateful that the service has helped them feel more secure with their aging loved ones staying at home and how quickly they are put in touch with emergency services. 

Some Facebook users seem to be complaining about Philip Lifeline's customer service department being slow or unresponsive. Other reoccurring complaints seem to be that their equipment is slow to ship or back-ordered, as well as having difficulties returning the equipment when they want to cancel. Two users claimed they have been trying to get a return label from Philips for weeks. 

Philips Lifeline has been a Better Business Bureau Accredited company since 2002 and they currently have an A+ BBB rating. As of this review, there were 29 customer complaints on file.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Does AARP have a medical alert system?

AARP does not have a branded medical alert system, however they do recommend medical alarms for seniors. Currently, AARP members save 15% on Philips Lifeline and receive free activation and shipping.

Does Medicare cover Philips Lifeline medical alert?

Generally, no however there are some exceptions. Please visit our blog that explains Medicare and Medicaid options in detail.

Does Philips Lifeline have automatic fall detection?

Yes, Philips Lifeline’s fall detection system is called AutoAlert and it works the same as traditional fall detection systems.

What is the monthly cost of Philips Lifeline?

The monthly cost of Philip Lifeline’s HomeSafe system starts at $29.95 which is a bit higher than some of the medical alert system companies on the market.

Does Philips Lifeline offer an Automatic Pill Dispenser or Medication Management System? 

No, this is no longer a direct to consumer product that they currently offer. Automatic pill dispenser services help to eliminate medication errors. These services can sometimes include an audio reminder and a push button dispenser. When the subscriber hears a reminder from the system, they simply press a button and the dispenser will release the medicine at the programmed times. If a dose is missed, the dispenser will contact your designated person to check on your status. Medical Alert Advice finds these features very helpful for caregivers to monitor if the patient has taken their medication. Even if your medical alert company does not offer this feature with their packages, we highly suggest finding it as a stand-alone product elsewhere. 


Bottom Line

All Lifeline alert systems are backed by the Phillips name, and they are a pioneer in the medical alert industry.

Their basic HomeSafe system works much the same way as others, but they have several more options and accessories to choose from. The flexibility of being able to use the system with or without a landline is a plus. Please note, the cellular HomeSafe system will cost more per month. You may have to purchase a voice extender if you live in a larger home and you have the landline system. We like the HomeSafe With AutoAlert fall detection option too, which detects falls automatically.

Currently, GoSafe2 is the most complete service which combines AutoAlert fall detection with the option to use it out of home, at a competitive price. It utilizes the latest medical alert technology with it's two-way voice feature and GPS plus three other location detection technologies. Their monitoring center is not TMA Five Diamond Certified and we do prefer companies that have this distinction.

During our call to Philips Lifeline, they put us on hold for a few minutes before connecting to a representative. Although we found their sales representative knowledgeable and friendly, they did not seem to have the best product knowledge and had to ask other departments for the information we were asking. They did not ask for personal information or give us a hard sales pitch which was nice. Be sure to ask if they can waive the activation or shipping fees with your order. They may be able to work with you on those fees. Philips Lifeline’s website features a convenient chat option but you will have to provide some personal information if you want to utilize it. 

Philips Lifeline has many great alert device features that are praised by the consumer reports buying guide too. Lifeline's accessories and options may make independent living that much easier and provide more peace of mind for loved ones. We also love their new Philips Cares offering which is an add-on bonus to all subscribers. It makes checking in on the health and well-being of your loved one quick and easy. Philips Lifeline is a great choice for seniors or anyone who may need medical alert monitoring services.

DISCLOSURE: We may receive referral fees from this company for purchases or inquiries made by you. Thanks to your support, we can maintain the website & offer you special discounts, at no cost to you.

 

FREE SHIPPING & NO ACTIVATION

USE COUPON CODE X2HW

  • Free Shipping & No Activation
  • Backed by the Philips Name
  • A+ Rated by the Better Business Bureau
  • FDA Registered
  • Professional Installation Available

1-855-681-5355

 

Although our experience with this company had these results, your experience may be different. If you're interested in this company's services, contact them to judge for yourself.


*Philips Lifeline logo is a registered trademark of Philips N.V.

Modified: 2021-05-21