How A Cellular Medical Alarm With GPS Can Help Save Lives

The generation that became known as baby boomers vowed during the sixties to never grow old, but that promise has predictably evaporated. Today, this aging demographic group is most concerned about the issues of independent senior living, including the realistic possibility of needing to call for emergency medical attention. Having access to a cellular medical alarm with GPS helps assuage those fears.

Alarmingly, one in three senior citizens falls each year. Although some try to hide this fact from their doctors in an effort to avoid losing personal autonomy, falls are the primary cause of significant injury in older people, often leading to hospitalizations and permanent disability. If an accident occurs when alone, there is a good chance that help might not arrive until it is too late.

The need for a personal system that automatically summons medical personnel prompted the development of the earliest home alert devices. They typically utilized a simple network tied to a remotely operated speaker phone. It could connect directly to a dedicated emergency center via an existing land line. While this was a vast improvement over a regular phone, there were still issues of portability and range.

Not long afterward, communications pendants were added to the product lineup. These small electronic links could connect directly to a speakerphone by push-button, not by shouting. Although limited to use in the home, they are still popular and cost-effective. Newer models make it possible to call for help even when the victim cannot speak. Some companies offer monitoring, while others call 911 directly.

While these advances have been valuable, there are additional features that were not available until recently. Standard alarms previously worked only at home, but are now able to summon assistance no matter where the user may go. They do this by linking the wearable units directly to the existing cell phone network, and use GPS location capabilities to determine the physical location of the victim.

Today there are valid concerns about digital privacy, but this is one form of tracking that has been warmly welcomed by many families. Any smart-phone today already automatically uses the Global Positioning System to locate users, and most users do not bother to deactivate it. Stationary satellites use the information from cell towers to triangulate the physical location of a user based on the last call.

If an older person becomes ill, pushing the call button automatically determines their whereabouts, while displaying pertinent personal information. The service allows direct voice communication, and works anywhere there is cell coverage, which today is nearly everywhere. The units are not bulky, but are small enough to be worn under clothing, are easy to read, and waterproof.

When activated, some service care centers are also able to provide important medical information for first responders before they arrive. When a senior in distress does not actually know his or her location, help can still be on the way within minutes. Like cell phones, these devices must be recharged periodically, and have a similar life expectancy, but the additional security advantages they offer are worth that minor inconvenience.

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