5 Best Medical Alert Systems of 2019

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Medical alert systems have grown massively in popularity over the last few years. The ability to get urgent medical attention at the push of a button has proved to be, quite literally, a lifesaver for some people, which has prompted many others to pick up a medical alert device themselves.

However, with so many options to choose from, and so many different form factors to consider, finding the right product for you can be tough. This guide is designed to help you cut through all the jargon and uncertainty surrounding these products, allowing you to make a more informed decision on the device for you.

If you already know what you are looking for, feel free to skip ahead to the products below. If not, it will be worth reading through this next section to bring yourself up to speed.

Budget
best-budget-medical-alert-system
LifeStation Mobile with GPS
4.8/5.0
Type: Pendant
Casing: plastic
This is low cost and very easy to use.
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Best Value
best-value-medical-alert-system
Medical Guardian In-Home System
4.8/5.0
Type: In-Home System
Pendant: plastic
Excellent emergency help service, very well priced.
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Top Pick
top-value-medical-alert-system
Medical Guardian Freedom Guardian
4.8/5.0
Type: Smartwatch
Casing: plastic
The best all-rounder, full of features.
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What to look for in a medical alert system

As mentioned, medical alert systems come in a variety of different form factors. The most basic systems run on mains electricity and are designed to be used in homes. Alternatively, you can opt for a mobile system instead which is designed to be used on-the-go. These systems usually come in the form of a wearable, such as a smartwatch.

Once you know which type of device you want, it is time to consider which features you would like the device to have. The most common feature of a medical alert system is the ability to call for help when you need it most. Some medical alert systems have their own team of assistants on call to help out, however, such systems usually require you to pay a subscription.

If you would rather avoid paying a subscription, there are devices out there that simply alert a family member or other emergency contact instead. This method is preferred by some people, however, you need to trust that your emergency contact will definitely respond when you need them to.

Some devices also come equipped with fall detection, allowing them to send for help on your behalf if they detect that you have had a bad fall. This is a very useful feature to have, however, not all manufacturers have managed to implement it well thus far. Therefore, if fall detection is a priority to you, be sure to check how your device of choice uses it before purchasing.

Another lesser-known feature that is starting to appear on medical alert systems is geo-fencing. This feature works by setting up a safe zone around the device wearer which alerts a family member or friend if the wearer leaves that zone. It is a great feature for anyone suffering from sundowning, as this condition can often cause people to go wandering in the middle of the night, as they believe it is daytime.

Once you know exactly what you want the device to do, you can then start thinking about how you want the device to look. As this is a very subjective area we won’t be giving you advice on how the device should look. However, you will want to make sure the device is durable enough to suit your everyday life. Some level of water-resistance is also worth looking out for.

Medical Alert Systems Comparison Table

Make and ModelTypeFeaturesConstructionPrice
Medical Guardian Freedom GuardianSmartwatchEmergency call button, GPS, 3-day weather forecast, medication and appointment alerts, text-to-speech messaging, audible info readouts, built-in cameraCasing: plastic
Strap: plastic
Check Price
LifeStation Mobile with GPSPendantGPS, WiFi, help button, optional fall detectionCasing: plastic
Necklace: fabric
Check Price
Tycho GPS SmartwatchSmartwatchActivity tracking, cellular, GPS, sleep tracking, emergency SOS, built-in camera, voice monitoring, voice chat, alarms, geo-fence alarmCasing: aluminum
Strap: leather
Check Price
Medical Guardian In-Home Medical Alert SystemIn-Home Medical Alert SystemEmergency help button, two-way communication, 24/7 monitoring centerPendant: plastic
Wristband: plastic
Hub: plastic
Check Price
MyNotifi Automatic Fall Detection WearableFall detection wearableFall detection, family and friends alerts, MyNotifi appCasing: polymerCheck Price

1. Top Pick: Medical Guardian Freedom Guardian

Medical Guardian Freedom GuardianView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.8/5

The Medical Guardian Freedom Guardian is a rather unique medical alert system, as it is one of the first medical alert smartwatches to hit the market. The purpose of this product is to provide one-touch access to a live emergency response agent, while also remaining discreet, something not all medical alert systems are able to do.

Design

The watch has a somewhat simple aesthetic, however, this doesn’t hide the fact that this device has a rather cheap look and feel. By no means should this device be compared to the Apple Watch, but a slightly more premium design would have been preferred.

The chunky construction and large bezels are hard to ignore and if you have particularly slender wrists you may find this device to be a little too bulky. The display is also rather small, although this does allow the watch to conserve some battery life as a result.

On the side of the device are two large buttons, a black one and a red one. The black button is the power button and is simply used to turn the device on and off. The red button, however, is the emergency help button and it activates by pressing and holding the button for three seconds.

The device also uses a touchscreen for navigation which works fine for the most part but it is noticeably sensitive. This means that it can activate accidentally at times which will slowly drain the battery over time.

The casing is made from plastic which makes the device very lightweight. We would have preferred to see a metal casing on this device as it would have given it more durability. However, unless you fall on it, the device is unlikely to get damaged.

The strap is also made from plastic which makes sense from a cost perspective but it isn’t going to provide as much comfort as a silicone strap. Therefore, if comfort is a priority you for, it could be worth investing in a third-party strap if you decide to go for this product.

As for water-resistance, the watch comes with an IP67 rating making it splashproof. For this reason, you shouldn’t use the device while swimming or showering. However, wearing the device while in the rain or washing dishes shouldn’t cause any issues.

Features

The Freedom Guardian is equipped with a rather unique set of features including an emergency call button, GPS, 3-day weather forecast, medication and appointment alerts, text-to-speech messaging, audible info readouts, and even a built-in camera.

The obvious feature to talk about here is the emergency call button. As mentioned, calls are initiated via the red button on the side of the device. On average, it is said to take around 28 seconds to connect you with an agent. This is slightly faster than most other medical alert systems using a similar implementation, however, considering you need to pay a subscription for this service, we were expecting it to be even quicker.

There is also a compatible mobile app for the watch which is available on both Android and iOS. When you first open the app you will be presented with your name and an optional photo, as well as the last time the watch’s GPS and cellular signals were received.

At the bottom of the app, there are five different buttons which allow you to do a variety of different things such as send messages, view a map, and set appointments and medication reminders. The decision to place the navigation bar at the bottom of the app is very well thought out by Medical Guardian, as it means even on larger phones, you can still use the app with one hand.

You also get access to a web portal which can be used by family members and caregivers to see your current location on a map. This is great for if you ever need to use the emergency call function, as anyone with access to the portal will be able to quickly pinpoint your location and get you the help you need.

Battery life

The Freedom Guardian has a pretty respectable battery life of up to 2 days. This puts the device on par with most other smartwatches these days. However, a lot of other mobile medical alert systems are able to last longer on a single charge, due to the fact that they don’t need to power a display.

A 2-day battery life means that you will find yourself charging the device pretty often. That being said, this device does offer a lot more features compared to most other medical alert systems, so the trade-off might be worthwhile to you.

An excellent device for anyone looking for a discreet medical alert system. For a smartwatch, it certainly isn’t among the better-looking options, but compared to most medical alert systems it is a far better option in terms of appearance and form factor.

View on Amazon

Tech Specs
Type: Smartwatch
Features: Emergency call button, GPS, 3-day weather forecast, medication and appointment alerts, text-to-speech messaging, audible info readouts, built-in camera
Construction: Casing: plastic
Strap: plastic
Battery life: Up to 2 days
The Pros
Discreet
Multi-functional
Excellent range of features
Includes emergency SOS
Audible readouts are useful for those who are visually impaired
Lightweight
Relatively durable
Decent battery life for a smartwatch
The Cons
Will probably replace your current watch
No fall detection
A metal casing would have been preferred
Will need to be charged regularly

2. Best Budget: LifeStation Mobile with GPS

LifeStation Mobile with GPSView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.8/5

LifeStation is a company held in pretty high regard in the medical alert system space. They have a released number of different medical alert systems, however, the LifeStation Mobile with GPS is by far the pick of the bunch thanks to its versatility and reliability.

Design

To look at, the LifeStation Mobile is pretty uninspiring. Its grey casing is rather bland, to say the least, however, ugly designs are common among medical alert systems, so it isn’t fair to write this device off based on how it looks.

Despite being somewhat of an eyesore, there is one redeeming factor to this design; it is refreshingly simple. As medical alert systems are often designed for seniors, one of the biggest issues manufacturers have is making sure the device is easy to use.

With only one large button on this device, you can’t really go wrong, as even in doubt you are likely to press it. This means that if you’re buying this device for an elderly relative, you shouldn’t need to worry about whether or not they will be able to use it.

The casing on the LifeStation Mobile is made from plastic which makes it lightweight, albeit at the cost of some durability. This, however, shouldn’t be an issue unless you happen to fall on it or drop something heavy on it. Also, considering that this device has been designed to be worn around your neck, it makes sense to prioritize keeping it lightweight, otherwise it could be uncomfortable.

The necklace that the device comes with is made from fabric. If we’re being honest the design of this necklace from an appearance perspective is awful. It is the sort of thing you would adjust a set of cheap blinds with rather than wear around your neck. However, it is important to remember that these devices, above all else, are designed to be functional and in this regard, it performs well.

The device is also waterproof meaning that the odd splash isn’t going to cause any damage. The base station that comes with the device is also water-resistant, however, the likelihood of it encountering water is very low anyway.

Features

The LifeStation Mobile has a fairly limited set of features compared to the likes of the Freedom Guardian. However, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as many seniors will likely prefer this approach. The devices main features include a help button, GPS, WiFi, and optional fall detection.

To use the emergency help feature, you simply need to press the button on the front of the device. This will initiate a call to a LifeStation Care Specialist who will then do their best to help you with your issue. The device can also be set up to call 911 and family members as well.

The GPS is used to pinpoint your location if you happen to fall ill or hurt yourself whilst out and about. This is especially useful if you aren’t able to give the person on the other end of the line an accurate description of your location.

One of the great things about LifeStations service is that it comes with a 30-day money back guarantee. The company also conducts a weekly silent test to check everything is working correctly.

The subscription rates are also relatively cheap, however, you will need to pay extra if you want fall detection. Fortunately, there are no long-term contracts, so the service can be canceled at any time.

Battery life

The LifeStation Mobile has an impressive battery life of up to 5 days. For peace of mind, however, you are better off charging the device daily, as if you are using the device for 5 days at a time you run the risk of it not working when you need it most.

When it comes to functionality and ease-of-use, this is by far one of the best medical alert systems on the market right now. For this reason, if you just want a device you can rely on and you’re not too concerned with how it looks, this is seriously worth considering.

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Tech Specs
Type: Pendant
Features: GPS, WiFi, help button, optional fall detection
Construction: Casing: plastic
Necklace: fabric
Battery life: Up to 5 days
The Pros
Simple device
Can be worn as a necklace
Has an emergency button
Comes with 24/7 monitoring free for the first month
Lightweight
Relatively durable
Decent battery life
Will only need to be charged once or twice a week
The Cons
Harder to conceal
Requires a subscription
The device isn’t very stylish
Expected better from a device that doesn’t have a display

3. Tycho GPS Smartwatch

Tycho GPS SmartwatchView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.5/5

The Tycho GPS smartwatch is a bit of an unknown when it comes to medical alert devices, as it has been branded as more of a security device. However, thanks to the inclusion of a couple of sought after medical alert features, this watch also makes a strong case for being one of the best medical alert devices available right now.

Design

The watch has a rather stylish design for a device at this price point. However, if you get up close to it, there is a noticeable lack of quality when it comes to the construction. It doesn’t feel flimsy in any way, it’s just that certain aspects of the device feel cheap.

Another thing worth noting about the device is its size. The casing on the watch measures 45mm across and is also 15mm thick. This makes it quite large for a smartwatch, meaning you may find the device bulky to wear if you have particularly slender wrists.

The casing is made from aluminum which is good to see, as it means the device is both lightweight and durable. A stainless steel casing would have given the watch a more premium look and feel, but at this price point we were expecting to see plastic being used here, so we can’t complain.

The strap is made from leather and unlike the watch itself, it doesn’t feel cheap at all. It also gives the device more of a luxury appearance which is useful if it is going to replace a more traditional dress watch.

There is also a silicone strap available, however, it is shorter than its leather counterpart, as it is intended for children rather than adults. Again, if you have slender wrists the strap may still fit you, but be sure to check before purchasing.

Unfortunately, Tycho hasn’t released any details regarding water-resistance. Based on this, we can only assume the device doesn’t have any, so be sure to keep it away from water as much as possible. The odd splash isn’t likely to damage it, of course, but anything more than this could cause problems.

Features

The Tycho GPS Smartwatch has a number of interesting features including activity tracking, cellular, GPS, sleep tracking, emergency SOS, built-in camera, voice monitoring, voice chat, alarms, and a geo-fence alarm.

One thing you should know before we continue is that, as this device is cellular, it will require a SIM card to full function. Fortunately, it is compatible with standard 3G SIM cards so this shouldn’t be too much of an issue, but it is still worth noting if you are thinking of buying this product.

The emergency SOS feature on this device works by simply pressing the SOS button to call family members. This is nowhere near as advanced as what most of the other devices in this guide are offering, but its simplicity may appeal to you more. There are also no subscription fees to worry about.

The standout feature on this device, however, has to be the geo-fencing function. As mentioned, this feature allows you to set up a safe zone for the watch wearer which is great for anyone prone to leaving their home at a dangerous time.

In order to receive alerts if the wearer leaves the specified zone, you will need to install the compatible mobile app on your smartphone. Once installed, you can simply pair the device and set up the zone. The app is available on both Android and iOS, and there is even a web portal you can use if you would rather not have the app taking up space.

Battery life

The Tycho GPS smartwatch has a very decent battery life of up to 4 days. This means the device will last up to twice as long between charges compared to the likes of the Freedom Guardian, which is very impressive.

The relatively small and somewhat low-quality display has probably got something to do with this ability to conserve power. However, you shouldn’t find yourself disappointed with the display, as long as you don’t compare it to something more premium, such as the Apple Watch.

This device isn’t the best option in this guide when it comes to getting emergency assistance. However, it does offer something that no other device does in its geo-fencing feature. This watch is also more premium looking than the likes of the Freedom Guardian even though its overall build-quality could do with some improvement.

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Tech Specs
Type: Smartwatch
Features: Activity tracking, cellular, GPS, sleep tracking, emergency SOS, built-in camera, voice monitoring, voice chat, alarms, geo-fence alarm
Construction: Casing: aluminum
Strap: leather
Battery life: 2 – 4 days
The Pros
Discreet
Multi-functional
Excellent range of features
Includes emergency SOS
Doesn’t require smartphone tethering
Geo-fence system is very useful
Lightweight
Durable
The strap is high-quality
Decent battery life for a smartwatch
The Cons
Will replace your current watch
No fall detection
Requires a SIM card
Polished finish may be prone to scratches
Will need to be charged once or twice a week

4. Best Value: Medical Guardian In-Home Medical Alert System

Medical Guardian In-Home Medical Alert SystemView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.8/5

The Medical Guardian In-Home Medical Alert System is a device intended for use inside a home rather than on-the-go. It is widely regarded as one of the best systems available right now thanks to its excellent emergency response times and competitive prices.

Design

This system certainly isn’t a head turner in terms of appearance. However, considering that this is a device intended to be used in your home, it really doesn’t matter. It will be a bit of an eyesore to have out on display all the time, but this is a device that has been designed with one goal in mind; to save lives.

The base station is made from plastic and comes in white. On the top of the base station, there are two main buttons; an Emergency button, and a Reset button. You also get an LCD display which tells you the time, date, temperature, signal level, and how much battery life the device currently has. There is also a small touch bar below the display which can be used to adjust the volume.

Along with the base station, you also get a wearable button that can be used to call for help in an emergency. The button is very simple in its design with just a plain oval shaped casing surrounding the button itself.

The button can also be worn as a pendant or as part of a wristband, giving you a couple of different options as to how you want to interact with it. Alternatively, you could decide to simply place the button in your pocket, however, you would then run the risk of losing it or accidentally making a call.

Features

The system doesn’t come with an extensive list of features like some of the other devices in this guide. However, this isn’t a bad thing, as simplicity is often preferred, especially with devices such as this.

Essentially, all you get with this device is the ability to make emergency calls to a monitoring center that runs 24/7. As this is a Medical Guardian system, it too benefits from the quicker than average response times boasted by the Freedom Guardian, meaning help is never far away when you need it.

There is also optional fall detection available with this system, however, it does come at an additional cost. This isn’t a necessary purchase, but we recommend paying the extra if the risk of falling is your main reason for buying one of these systems.

The average call time for this device is around 47 seconds. This is much faster than most other systems which average more than 90 seconds. The base station also makes a point of letting you know when a call is active. This is only a small detail, of course, but it is reassuring, as the last thing you need in an emergency is the added anxiety of not knowing if you are even connected.

Battery life

As this device is an in-home system, it can be run on mains electricity. However, in the case of a blackout, there is also a backup battery which lasts around 30 hours. This is great to see from Medical Guardian, as it is clear they are trying to make sure you can get the help you need regardless of the situation.

This system has arguably the best emergency help function out of all the products in this guide. It offers fast response times and has been designed to cover as many scenarios as possible that you could find yourself in whilst home alone. It isn’t going to be for anyone looking for a mobile system, but for in-home use, this is the one to go for.

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Tech Specs
Type: In-Home Medical Alert System
Features: Emergency help button, two-way communication, 24/7 monitoring center
Construction: Pendant: plastic
Wristband: plastic
Hub: plastic
Battery life: 30 hours (backup battery)
The Pros
Gives you access to help throughout your entire home
Great for anyone living alone
Excellent medical alert features
Has a range of 600ft
Lightweight
Versatile
Plugs into the mains
Has a backup battery in case of power outages
The Cons
Restricted to home use
Requires a subscription
Looks and feels a bit cheap
Can’t be used on-the-go

5. MyNotifi Automatic Fall Detection Wearable

MyNotifi Automatic Fall Detection WearableView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 3.8/5

The MyNotifi Fall Detection Wearable is a very simple device with a very clear goal; to get you the help you need if you have a bad fall. It is a fairly unknown product in the world of medical alert systems, however, it does offer a few key features that make it a worthy addition to this guide.

Design

The device has a rather rugged design but it manages to maintain quite a minimalistic appearance as well. The reason for this is because the device doesn’t have any buttons or a display. Instead, it has been designed to automatically send text notifications to an emergency contact in the event of a fall.

The device can be worn as either a wristband or a belt clip, meaning that it doesn’t need to replace watch or bracelet if you don’t want it to. Both the wristband and belt clip are made from a type of polymer. However, MyNotifi hasn’t specified the exact material they use.

What we do know is that the wristband and the belt clip both appear to be very durable. Also, the soft feel of the wristband means you shouldn’t have any issues in terms of comfort.

The wristbands are also available in a wide variety of colors and are very reasonably priced. This means that if you decide you would like to change the color of your device at a later date, you can do so easily, and you won’t need to buy a completely new device.

Unfortunately, MyNotifi hasn’t released any information regarding water-resistance. For this reason, we recommend trying to keep the device away from water as much as you can. Having said that, the odd splash is unlikely to cause any damage, as the casing protects the internal device very well.

Features

As mentioned, this device has been designed to notify someone if it detects that you have had a bad fall. As a result, this means that the feature-set on this wearable is pretty limited.

The device itself is only able to detect falls and send text notifications. However, you do also get access to the MyNotifi app, and you will need to download this in order to use the device properly. Be aware that this does mean the device relies on a smartphone to function, which could be an issue if you are buying for an elderly relative who doesn’t own one.

One of the good things about this product is that there are no subscription fees involved. You simply pay one upfront cost for the device, and that’s it. If you feel as though you or a loved one would benefit more from a dedicated monitoring center, this device probably isn’t for you. However, if you have a reliable emergency contact, paying for access to a monitoring center may be unnecessary.

One thing to note about this device is that it tends to work more accurately when the sensor is worn on the inside of the wrist. This is said to reduce the number of false alarms that can be sent by this device, however, it doesn’t eliminate them entirely.

Battery life

On a single charge, the device will last between 1 and 2 days. This means that you will get at least a day out of the device regardless of how much it gets used. If we’re being honest, however, we were expecting to see figures of around 7 days, considering that there is no display, and no extensive list of features to run.

This device is by no means bad, but compared to the other options in this guide it doesn’t really hold its own. It’s a decent medical alert device for the right person, however, it leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to features and battery life.

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Tech Specs
Type: Fall detection wearable
Features: Fall detection, family and friends alerts, MyNotifi app
Construction: Casing: polymer
Battery life: 1 – 2 days
The Pros
Simple to use device
Easier to conceal than a pendant
Able to detect falls
Can alert family and friends
Lightweight
Compact
Durable
Can be worn in multiple ways
Will last at least a day between charges
The Cons
Only detects falls
The device isn’t very stylish
Battery life should be higher as there is no display to power
0/50 ratings