Best Medical Alert Systems With Fall Detection In 2022
- Medical alert systems with fall detection can help older adults lead more confident, active lives.
- Medical alert systems with fall detection ensure older adults will receive care even if unresponsive.
- Different medical alert systems offer varying features, which makes some brands better for at-home use and others designed for on-the-go use.
- Medical alert system companies are continually implementing new technologies to create more accurate systems for your safety.
The best medical alert systems with fall detection can greatly improve the quality of life for older adults and their family members. With automatic fall detection technology and emergency medical help at the press of a panic button, older adults can live independently for longer, remain active with less risk, and gain around-the-clock protection.
We’ve thoroughly researched and tested medical alert systems with a fall detection feature to help find the best products for you and your family. See which brands made our list of the best medical alert systems with fall detection.
Best Medical Alert Systems With Fall Detection in 2022
- Medical Guardian: Best for an Active Lifestyle
- Bay Alarm Medical: Best Pricing Options
- MobileHelp: Best At-Home System
- Medical Alert: Best for Coverage in the U.S.
- GetSafe: No Wearable Device Required
- Aloe Care Health: Best for Mobility Challenges
Why You Can Trust Our Expert Review
Our experts independently research and recommend products we believe provide value to the lives of our readers. We’ve collectively spent more than 1,700 hours conducting in-depth research on medical alert systems. Our team tested multiple medical alert devices, to better understand features and provide the most accurate feedback and recommendations for our readers.
To decide on our top picks, here’s what we did:
- Engaged in ongoing independent research
- Consulted with geriatricians and adult caregivers
- Mystery shopped the brands
- Surveyed medical alert system users
- Tested various medical alert systems
- Interviewed experts in the field
- Read hundreds of verified customer reviews from trusted third parties such as Better Business Bureau and Consumer Reports
Comparisons of the Best Medical Alert Systems With Fall Detection
|Monthly Cost (Base)||Medical Guardian||$29.95–$44.95||Bay Alarm Medical||$21.95–$49.95||MobileHelp||$24.95–$64.95||Medical Alert||$22.95–$42.95||GetSafe||$21.95–$39.95||Aloe Care Health||$24.99–$49.99|
|Fall Detection Cost||Medical Guardian||$10/month||Bay Alarm Medical||$10/month||MobileHelp||$10/month||Medical Alert||$10/month||GetSafe||$10/month||Aloe Care Health||N/A|
|Equipment Fee||Medical Guardian||$0–$124.95||Bay Alarm Medical||$0–$179||MobileHelp||$0||Medical Alert||$0||GetSafe||$79–$229||Aloe Care Health||$99–$349|
|Activation Fee||Medical Guardian||$0||Bay Alarm Medical||$0||MobileHelp||$0 or $49.95||Medical Alert||$0||GetSafe||$0||Aloe Care Health||$0|
|Device Range (Home Units)||Medical Guardian||500 to 1,300 feet||Bay Alarm Medical||1,000 feet||MobileHelp||600 feet (landline) or 1,400 feet (cellular)||Medical Alert||800 feet||GetSafe||800 feet||Aloe Care Health||200 feet|
|Connection Type||Medical Guardian||Landline or cellular||Bay Alarm Medical||Landline or cellular||MobileHelp||Landline or cellular||Medical Alert||Landline or cellular||GetSafe||Landline or cellular||Aloe Care Health||AT&T cellular|
|Battery Life||Medical Guardian||3 or 5 days||Bay Alarm Medical||3 days||MobileHelp||2 days||Medical Alert||5 days||GetSafe||3 days||Aloe Care Health||5 days|
|Water-Resistant?||Medical Guardian||Yes||Bay Alarm Medical||Yes||MobileHelp||Yes (buttons only)||Medical Alert||Yes||GetSafe||Yes||Aloe Care Health||Yes|
|Protection Plan||Medical Guardian||$6.99/month||Bay Alarm Medical||$2.95/ month||MobileHelp||$5/month||Medical Alert||$5/month||GetSafe||$5/month||Aloe Care Health||N/A|
|Contract||Medical Guardian||No||Bay Alarm Medical||No||MobileHelp||No||Medical Alert||No||GetSafe||No||Aloe Care Health||No|
Best Medical Alert Systems With Fall Detection in Detail
- 1,300-foot range for the at-home landline system and 1,400-foot protection range for the at-home cellular system
- Lightweight mobile devices and smartwatch option
- Less than 15-second response time during our system test
- Free portal available for caregivers to use
- Advanced features like Smart Voice Assist and OnGuard Alerts
No charge for cancellation and pro-rated refund
TMA Five Diamond Certified monitoring center
Five packages available: two at-home and three on-the-go devices, including the MGMove Smartwatch
Product quiz to help you find the best device for you
Device protection plan costs extra
Contracts are month-to-month after a three-month minimum commitment
If you need an easy-to-use mobile medical alert system for outside the home, the Medical Guardian Mobile 2.0 is an excellent choice. Medical Guardian is one of the few companies we found with an all-in-one fall detection device for protection while you’re out and about. You can wear the 1.7 ounce Mobile 2.0 device on its detachable lanyard or easily clip it to your belt or bag. It also comes with a separate emergency help button that you can wear on an included wristband or necklace. All you need to remember is to charge it twice a week and wear it wherever you go.
Another unique benefit of the Medical Guardian Mobile 2.0 is its advanced location monitoring that can connect to 4G LTE, Wi-Fi, and GPS for a faster connection speed. With the included MyGuardian customer portal, you can also set up a network of emergency contacts to view your location and receive alerts if necessary. Medical Guardian also offers in-home monitoring options.
While there’s a lot to like about Medical Guardian, it hasn’t received the best customer reviews. On Trustpilot, Medical Guardian has 1.3 out of 5 stars with hundreds of reviews, while on the Better Business Bureau, it has 1.2 out of 5 stars. Most of the negative reviews mention billing concerns, so if you go with Medical Guardian, be sure to monitor your bill and speak with them right away when you have a concern. The company bills automatically, which can surprise people with annual plans who forget about them.
See our full Medical Guardian Review.
- On-the-Go Help Button mobile system monthly fee is lower than most competitors ($29.95 per month)
- Free GPS monitoring services with mobile and smartwatch subscriptions
- Can add at-home monitoring for your partner or roommate by purchasing an additional help button—no additional subscription required
- Devices, especially the smartwatch, are more stylish than other companies
30-day money-back guarantee
The Monitoring Association (TMA) Five Diamond Certified monitoring center
Locked into your original monthly price even if the cost increases over time
Great reputation and customer reviews—it has an A+ rating on Better Business Bureau and a customer review rating of over 4 out of 5 stars
Landline and cellular at-home systems have the same protection range from the base station (1,000 feet)
Device protection plan costs extra
We also recommend Bay Alarm Medical because we love the style of its products. There are optional Bella Charms that you can clip to the back of certain necklace buttons and an SOS Smartwatch option for anyone who would like something more familiar.
With the SOS Smartwatch, you even have a built-in step tracker. However, the base smartwatch model isn’t compatible with fall detection. You would need to purchase the smartwatch and in-home bundle to qualify for a fall detection button, making it a pretty expensive monthly option at $41.95 plus the $10 per month fall detection.
Bay Alarm Medical is one of the few medical alert system options for couples who both want on-the-go coverage. While the first mobile GPS is $29.95, the second one is only $20. You won’t need to pay an additional monthly fee for two mobile buttons—you’re both covered under one monthly monitoring fee. Purchase fall detection for either one button ($10 per month) or both ($20 per month).
Bay Alarm Medical’s mobile GPS button is also a stand-alone device, so you don’t need to carry two pieces of equipment with you when you leave home.
See our full Bay Alarm Medical Review.
- 1,400-foot protection range with at-home cellular system
- Offers three at-home options and more advanced at-home devices like the digital tablet Touch Classic
- Connect virtually with a board-certified doctor with MDLIVE telehealth for an additional monthly fee
- Medication reminders and activity tracking add great value
30-day money-back guarantee
Medication reminder available
Product quiz to help you find the best device for you
Eight packages available: three at-home options, two on-the-go options, and three bundle options
$49.95–$99.95 processing fee charged for some devices
Monitoring center not TMA Five Diamond Certified
MobileHelp has some of the most extensive add-ons and unique perks. Optional services like medication reminders, activity tracking, and health tracking may benefit older adults who do well with more advanced devices—just keep in mind that these add-ons cost $5 per month each.
Another feature that makes MobileHelp an innovative option is their MobileHelp Touch plans with touchscreen tablets instead of traditional in-home base monitored systems. The tablets are interactive and easy to read, so you can check your activity levels, play brain games, or even add photos of your family to play on a loop when it’s charging. You can also add a fall detection device with an automatic sensor to your plan that can send an alert even when you can’t press the button yourself.
MobileHelp offers various in-home, on-the-go, and combination systems, making it a viable safety solution for most older adults. We also recommend MobileHelp for active couples, thanks to the Mobile Duo plan. This is the only two-for-one GPS medical alert system in the industry starting at $44.95 per month. You and your partner have individual mobile systems, so you’re both protected when away from your home.
At $44.95 per month, this partner option saves money compared to most medical alert device companies that require you to purchase an add-on partner plan or two individual plans for similar coverage.
See our full MobileHelp Review.
- The at-home system works in the U.S., Puerto Rico, Canada, and the Virgin Islands
- Free app included with all subscriptions
- No additional monthly fee to add spouse
- Daily check-in services for an additional monthly fee
30-day money-back guarantee
Landline and cellular at-home system have the same features
Product quiz helps you find the right device for you
App allows you to contact support, test your device, get notifications during an emergency, and monitor the user’s location
Monitoring center isn’t TMA Diamond Certified
Warranty not included (device protection plan costs extra)
The brand name is the commonly used name for devices in general, which may make it difficult to leave online reviews or find the brand in search results
If you and your partner are both looking for a fall detection system, Medical Alert has plans that are among the most affordable. There is no monthly fee to add a second wearable button to protect your spouse with the Home System. And if you pay for a full six or 12 months, you’re both covered for $19.95 per month.
Keep in mind that you would have to purchase two Mobile System plans for each of you to have protection outside the home. Most companies—excluding MobileHelp’s Mobile Duo plan—don’t have plans with more than one wireless device.
Most negative BBB reviews state issues with billing, returns, and canceling accounts with Medical Alert. Other customers noted faulty equipment.
Because Medical Alert has few add-ons, the pricing is straightforward, and the total cost of plans makes them one of the more affordable options. There is an optional $5 per month protection plan for your devices, along with a $2.99 per month lockbox fee unless you pay annually. Fall detection costs an additional $10 per month.
See our full Medical Alert Review.
- Doesn’t require you to wear a button
- Three available packages designed to fit different home sizes (0–1 bedroom, 2–3 bedrooms, and 4–5 bedrooms), and you can also customize your package
- Voice-activated wall buttons that you can place in high-risk areas at home
- Can bundle fall detection and GPS tracking services for $10 per month
30-day money-back guarantee
At-home medical alert system designed so users can move freely around their home without wearing a button
Monthly price is the same for all packages
Add-ons can get expensive ($5–$79 per add-on per month)
Expensive equipment fees ($79–$279)
Warranty not included (device protection plan costs extra)
If you want to make sure your entire home is covered, GetSafe is a solid option. GetSafe’s primary plan utilizes various voice-activated buttons around the home, so you don’t have to wear a wristband or pendant unless you want to. Just keep in mind that you must use the wearable button if you want automatic fall detection.
GetSafe voice-activated wall buttons enable you to connect with a live operator even if you can’t reach the wall-mounted unit. These units also have pull cords connecting you with the call center.
Because GetSafe service is designed to cover your entire home for pendant-free use, there is more equipment than with traditional wearable plans. You’ll have the in-home base unit along with traditional and voice-activated wall buttons that you place strategically around the home. This does translate into a higher cost to start with GetSafe because you pay for this equipment upfront.
GetSafe also offers on-the-go plans with GPS-activated buttons. However, these plans cost a bit more than similar services from most of the other companies we reviewed. We primarily recommend GetSafe to customers who want home-only protection.
See our full GetSafe Review.
- The base station (the Hub) has built in motion, home temperature, and air quality sensors
- The Aloe Care app is included with all subscriptions. Caregivers receive updates during an emergency and call the base station, all by using the app
- Free fall detection is included with the Mobile Companion (but fall detection isn’t available with other devices)
30-day money-back guarantee
TMA Five Diamond Certified monitoring center
Free caregiver app with unlimited users
Only a 200-foot range from the base station
You must say “Emergency” several times to get an emergency response from the Smart Hub or fall detection sensor
In-home fall detection is only available in one room unless you buy the Mobile Companion
Expensive equipment fees ($99–$349.99)
For fall detection in smaller houses or specific rooms, Aloe Care Health offers some of the most helpful options. The Care Button lacks fall detection and has a range of up to 200 feet, making it ideal for less active people. If you need further coverage, the Mobile Companion is an optional wearable fall detection device.
With the Total Care package, you’ll get two motion sensors you can install anywhere. But what sets Aloe Care apart is its wall-mounted device that automatically detects falls. This is perfect for a bathroom or other area with a higher risk for falls, as well as comprehensive protection for anyone living in a smaller home or apartment.
Aloe Care Health also has a great mobile app that empowers caregivers to communicate, stay in touch, and monitor air quality and room temperature. If you can look past some higher one-time equipment fees, Aloe Care Health has fantastic solutions for fall detection and more.
See our full Aloe Care Health Review.
What Is Fall Detection?
Automatic fall detection is an optional feature available on most Medical Alert Systems, also known as personal emergency response systems (PERS). With a wearable medical alert system, users wear a button with motion-sensing technology on their wrist or as a necklace.
In case of a fall, the button sends a signal to a monitoring center, where a representative attempts to make contact to see if you’re okay. If you don’t respond or are hurt and need help, the representative contacts emergency services and directs them to your location.
How Accurate Is Fall Detection?
Medical alert systems with automatic fall detection are not 100% accurate, and the accuracy varies from one medical alert company to another. In a 2015 study published in Gerontology, researchers sought to determine the accuracy of wearable fall detection devices in real life. The devices detected 12 out of 15 falls, with about one false alarm fall—a detected fall that didn’t happen—every 40 hours. This was just an average figure, so it doesn’t necessarily mean that a false alert would occur every two days.
Keep in mind that this study only looked at one personal emergency response system, and medical alert system companies are continually trying to improve technology to detect falls accurately and send fewer false alarms. When a system detects a fall, an operator first tries to contact you before reaching out to emergency personnel. Your base unit at home or primary wireless unit will have a two-way speaker, so be sure to answer if you can when an agent reaches out to you whether or not you need help at that moment.
Why Is Fall Detection Important?
While all medical alert systems have a button that you can activate in the case of a fall or other emergency, you may not always be able to press the contact button.
“Medical alert systems with fall detection can ensure a senior receives care when they fall, even if they lose consciousness or fail to remember to activate the alert system. They’re best for individuals with dementia who may forget to activate the emergency alert if they fall,” explained Melanie Musson, a senior health expert with InsuranceProviders.com.
So if you or a loved one are at a high risk of falling or have memory impairment or movement difficulties, automatic fall detection may be the right option.
Medical alert systems have a monthly fee that varies based on the type of system, features, and the company you choose. Here’s a summary of the price for different systems and features.
- In-home units: These medical alert systems are best for at-home protection. Units connected to landlines are usually the most affordable, costing roughly $20–$30 per month. Those that utilize cellular networks typically cost around $5 more per month.
- GPS systems: Also known as on-the-go devices, GPS units go with you when you leave home. These are more expensive and have a greater variety of options, but you can expect a monthly fee of around $30–$45.
- Combination systems: These include in-home units and GPS on-the-go devices and have a price point of roughly $40–$65 per month.
- Fall detection: With most brands, fall detection is an optional feature that costs $10 per month per person, whether inside or outside of the home. On occasion you may find fall detection included in the monthly price or as a $15 per month add-on.
- Equipment fees: You might pay upfront for equipment ($0–$200), shipping ($10–$20), a one-time processing or installation fee (varies), or a lockbox fee (one-time or monthly cost). Some companies waive these fees when you start or if you pay annually.
- Add-ons: Some companies offer additional features, most of which cost around $5–$10 per month each. These include medication reminders, caregiver apps (which are often free), health monitors, and activity trackers.
- Additional buttons or devices: You might want extra wall buttons or a separate GPS device or fall detection button for your spouse. The cost of these varies, though certain providers offer free monitoring for additional devices.
- Advanced features: Brands may offer medical alert watches, tablets, attractive necklace pendants, or other unique features for an additional fee.
With all of the optional features, there’s no simple answer to how much a medical alert system with fall detection costs. At the low end, you’re looking at $30 per month for in-home protection for one person. At the high end, you may pay $100 per month for both you and your partner. And startup fees can cost up to $250 for most plans.
What Type of Fall Detection Devices Are Available?
A majority of medical alert companies offer fall detection for an additional monthly fee. Fall detection devices are usually available to wear around your neck as a lanyard or pendant.
Most medical alert system companies don’t offer fall detection watches since fall detection technology isn’t as accurate when worn around your wrist. Issues that arise with a wrist-worn device include it possibly triggering multiple false alarms since the device may find it difficult to distinguish your natural movements from an actual fall.
Lively recommends wearing the fall detection pendant around your neck instead of as a fall alert bracelet or watch for more accurate detection and fewer false alarms.
Apple Watch Series 7 has automatic fall detection for users aged 55 and older. You can set up the fall detection app on your phone using the Health app, or on your smartwatch. Apple’s support page states that the Apple Watch can’t detect all falls, and asserts that “your watch might detect high-impact activity as a fall and trigger fall detection.”
Lanyards and neck pendants are currently the most accurate fall detection devices on the market, but many companies are trying to improve smartwatch fall detection technology.
How to Choose the Best Medical Alert System With Fall Detection for You
Here are the questions you should ask when searching for the right medical alert system with automatic fall detection:
Where do you want protection?
There are two main types of medical alert systems: in-home and on-the-go systems. The in-home units are the most affordable and are pretty straightforward to use. These typically come with an extended coverage range between 500 feet (Medical Guardian) to 1,000 feet (Bay Alarm Medical) from the primary console for your wearable device.
On-the-go systems have devices that can connect to cellular networks, Wi-Fi, and GPS to help keep you safe wherever you go. If you live an active life but worry about falls or other medical emergencies, a medical alert system with fall detection and cellular or GPS connection can give you peace of mind to continue to live life the way you want to.
Another option is a combination plan with an in-home unit and a mobile device. These systems allow you to recharge your portable devices when you’re home while still having coverage.
What features appeal to you?
Most medical alert systems are pretty straightforward, with an emergency call button that you wear and optional automatic fall protection. But these aren’t the only features available. For example, some brands have medication reminders, health tracking, and activity tracking.
Another useful feature is a caregiver portal that allows family and friends to monitor what’s going on and update things like emergency contacts. We love medical alert apps for mobile systems, as they often allow caregivers to see where you are, giving you an extra level of comfort. Apps can also help you learn how to use your system.
Is cost a deciding factor?
In-home units are the most affordable, and the fewer add-ons, the less a system costs. But if you want a robust system that works both in-home and on-the-go and that comes with lots of features, expect to pay for it. You should also ask about initial fees like equipment, shipping, setup, or a lockbox.
Do you need coverage for your spouse?
Most in-home units have a comparable price, whether it’s just for one person or two. But if you want on-the-go coverage for both of you, only certain companies provide discounts for couples. These include MobileHelp and Bay Alarm Medical.
Does the medical alert company help in both emergency and non-emergency situations?
Most medical alert system companies help customers in emergencies, like a fall or a fire, and non-emergencies when you need to contact a family member or neighbor to come help. However, some brands only cover emergencies, so it’s a good idea to check to see what the call center accommodates. All of the companies that made our list help with emergencies and non-emergencies.
How are the third-party reviews?
Third-party sites like Trustpilot and the Better Business Bureau are valuable resources for evaluating the customer experience of different companies. Customers leave reviews and brands receive an overall rating. You can read the rating and the reviews to see what to expect and to see how the company resolves any complaints.
What’s the cancellation policy, and is there a contract?
Most medical alert system brands provide a risk-free 30-day trial and no contract. But this isn’t the case with every company, so ask about the return policy and contract before committing.
How Much Does a Medical Alert System With Fall Detection Cost?
In general, the costs associated with fall detection in medical alert systems can range from $5 to $10 per month on average, in addition to their base monitoring fees. On occasion, you may find fall detection included in the monthly price or as a $15/month add-on. Fall detection can come in many different kinds of devices; for example, Medical Guardian’s on-the-go system has advanced location monitoring that can connect to 4G LTE, Wi-Fi, and GPS for a faster connection speed. So for out-and-about users, this might be a great option to consider.
If you’re worried about a serious fall or injury leading to disorientation, consult with your medical alert systems customer care team to determine if fall detection is right for you.
Who Should Use a Medical Alert System With Fall Detection?
“Medical alert systems are generally associated with senior citizens, but they can also be used by anyone at risk of falling or having a medical emergency, regardless of age,” explains Debanjan Banerjee, MD, geriatric psychiatrist and one of the consultants at DoctorSpring. Dr. Banerjee adds that anyone with a chronic illness who may require emergency care or special medications could also benefit from a medical alert system in the home.
These systems can also improve quality of life for older adults. According to Dr. Banerjee, a medical alert system allows older adults to live at home independently and “provides a big assurance to their adult children since their parent has access to immediate help when they fall or suffer a more severe medical emergency.”
He also notes that these systems even help with fitness and well-being. “Fear of falling will discourage seniors to remain physically active, which can contribute to their functional decline,” he said. “With the fall alert system, they can move around without fear knowing help will be on its way swiftly in case something happens,” enabling them to stay more active and physically fit.
Automatic fall detection can be a useful addition to any medical alert system. By providing an additional layer of safety coverage, these devices help older adults stay independent longer and reduce worries about falls and other injuries.
In our research, five companies stood out. We like Medical Guardian for its ease-of-use, with above-average device ranges for in-home systems and one-piece models for outside the home. For additional technology perks like blood pressure monitoring or medication alerts, MobileHelp may be a better fit.
Our other top picks include Medical Alert, which offers affordable in-home systems for couples, Bay Alarm Medical, which has some of the best customer reviews and has been around for more than 70 years, and Aloe Care Health, which has special features like air quality measurements and temperature checks. Finally, GetSafe’s voice-activated buttons create a unique wearable-free system for in-home use, but you’ll still need to wear a help button if you want automatic fall detection. Each of these systems can help you live more confidently, knowing that you’re protected.
Fall detection works, but it isn’t infallible. Because different companies utilize various technologies and products, there’s no way to know exactly how accurate each medical alert system is. You may experience false fall detections and, on occasion, missed falls. Overall, though, these systems provide a reliable safety device for anyone at risk of a fall. Remember that all of the systems on our list also include an emergency call button.
Other Medical Alert Guides And Medical Alert Systems That We Have Reviewed
- Best Medical Alert Systems
- Best Medical Alert Systems with Fall Detection
- Best Personal Emergency Response Systems (PERS)
- Best Medical Alert Systems With No Monthly Fee
- Best Medical Alert Watches for 2022
- Best Medical Alert Bracelets for Seniors
- Best Medical Alert Systems with GPS
- Medical Guardian Review
- Aloe Care Health Review
- MobileHelp Review
- Bay Alarm Medical Review
- Medical Alert Review
- GreatCall Review
- LifeStation Review
- LifeFone Review
- Philips Lifeline Review
- MobileHelp Smart Review
- Alert1 Review
- ADT Medical Alert Review
- Apple Watch Medical Alert Review
- GreatCall Lively Mobile Reviews
- Rescue Alert Medical Alert Review
- Life Alert Review
Learn More About Medical Alert Systems
Nicole is a freelance writer with a passion for health, wellness, and fitness. Before entering the writing field, Nicole received her undergraduate degree in Organismal Biology from Scripps College and spent time as a nutrition coach. For the past seven years, Nicole has been a health writer for various wellness experts and publications, including Everyday Health, Health, and fitness icon Thomas Delauer.
MEDICALLY REVIEWED BY
Jenny is an Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner in NYC with a passion for working with aging adults and their family members. Prior to her clinical training at Vanderbilt School of Nursing, she worked in business and medical research at Harvard Business School and Massachusetts General Hospital. As a Caregiving Coach at Givers, Jenny helps family members manage the financial, emotional, and educational stresses of caring for their loved ones who are aging in place.