A significant part of home safety involves protecting yourself and loved ones from emergency situations. For many of us, that means making sure we are taken care of in the event of a medical emergency. Whether it is for yourself, a family member or friend, a medical alert system can help offer peace of mind and security to those who are at risk of medical emergencies.
Medical Guardian is our #1 choice for best medical alert systems in 2018. They are an industry leader in home and personal alert systems, offering excellent service and a variety of packages to fit your lifestyle and needs.
Medical Guardian offers a lifetime warranty, a price lock guarantee, and a solid line-up of equipment. Plus equipment, activation, and shipping are free so it’s easy to get started.
- Free equipment, activation and shipping
- Lifetime warranty
- No contract, only a 90 service agreement
- Auto fall detection
- Price lock guarantee
- GPS and home systems
- 24/7/365 professional monitoring
- Cellular and battery operated equipment
- Emergency dispatch or call family and friends
- Waterproof equipment
- A+ BBB rating
- Multiple wearable options: necklace pendants, discrete bracelets and belt clips
- Expensive monitoring plans
- Difficult assembly (may require some strength)
- Wearable pendent extremely hard to move from bracelet to necklace
- Limited two-way wearables
Price & Packages
The table below has the various systems and monthly costs. All equipment has a lifetime warranty and waterproof pendants.
|Package name||Classic Guardian|
|Monthly price||$29.95 / Month|
|Package name||Home Guardian|
|Monthly price||$34.95 / Month|
|Package name||Active Guardian|
|Monthly price||$49.95 / Month|
|Package name||Mobile Guardian|
|Monthly price||$39.95 / Month|
Medical Guardian also offers a Family Guardian Plan. It costs $79.95 per month and comes with a door sensor and activity sensors. It also gives family members access to a mobile app. The app sends real-time notifications about activity and inactivity so you’ll have a better idea of how your loved ones are doing even when you aren’t in the home.
Medical Guardian solves feelings of dependency by designing systems that accommodate travel, outdoor activity, etc. Medical Guardian has equipment and packages that take into consideration the mobility and liveliness of senior citizens and disabled persons.
- Monitoring station is located in the US with multiple industry safety certifications.
- Monitoring professionals are trained to handle crisis situations and will stay on the line with you until help arrives.
- Rapid response times, so as soon as you push your alert pendant, the monitoring service will call. If you don’t answer, they will dispatch help.
- Ability to dispatch EMTs, police, family members or friends based on selected preferences.
- Add a Lockbox to your equipment so no one has to break down your door to enter and provide help.
- Medical history card comes in your box. You can write down your medical history, allergies, medication, etc. and responders would be informed to look for the card on the refrigerator or console.
- Request a specific language or other specialized services from your monitoring professional.
Our Experience with Medical Guardian
During our tests, we tried to take the back off the main console, in order to plug in the power cord, and it proved very hard to do. The process is similar to taking the back off a remote control to replace the batteries. It can definitely be frustrating to struggle with something so simple.
*Update 10/20/2015: The back of the main console is actually fairly easy to take off, but the design is counter-intuitive. In the below picture, the red circle is where we assumed we would press to remove the back panel, but that actually further locks it down. Instead, insert your thumb into the area indicated by the blue circle, and pull gently back to release the back.
Pendant is non-transferrable
Looking at the pendant, you’d assume that you can switch between the bracelet and necklace. However, you should not attempt to move the pendant. Instead, if you want to have two wearable options Medical Guardian will send you a second pendant for $2.00 per month. We found this out the hard way, assuming (incorrectly) that we could move the pendant from the necklace grip to the bracelet grip, and it took more than 30 minutes before we could manage it. You can also opt for the $2.00 extra monthly charge to share one system between two people.
Also note, you’ll need to hold down the button on your pendant for a few seconds, until the pendant lights up in response. During testing we noticed that if you don’t hold the button down for two seconds at least, the light doesn’t always come on, engaging the system. Be careful not to press lightly and release, as there’s no guarantee your call will be received.
Limited Communication with Specific Systems
A major safety concern we discovered was the lack of two-way communication through wearable devices. Two of the four models don’t have speakers on the pendant, only on the base. What this means is that in the event of an emergency, you would press the pendant, calling for help, and the monitoring service would call the device and speak through the base station. That sounds simple enough, but if you are outside of range from the base system or cannot hear the base station, you could be trying to answer the monitoring center’s call and wouldn’t be able to. In the event that you did not respond to the call, emergency resources or contacts would be dispatched. To help understand, imagine this scenario:
Jim lives in a ranch style home with a basement and a garage. He has a Home Medical Guardian with a base station and a wearable emergency pendant. He keeps the base station centrally located in the kitchen, but while he is in the garage, he suffers a medical emergency. Because the monitoring service is calling him on the base station, located in the kitchen, Jim cannot answer the monitor’s call. If Jim had a wearable with a speaker on it for two-way communication, he could speak to the monitoring professional, explain the emergency or even listen to the representative, knowing that help was coming.
We feel it would be a benefit and a safety measure to have two-way communication on the wearable devices. If you can relate to Jim’s situation, you can opt for the Mobile or Active Guardians, which have built in speakers on the wearable devices, so no matter where you are, you can speak to or listen to a representative, helping you feel safer.
Which Package Do We Recommend?
We recommend the Active Guardian based on our tests. Not only does this model have the safest features like auto fall detection, cellular connection, GPS capability, battery backup, speaker directly on the wearable and unlimited range, it is also the easiest to install and wear. You can wear this device around the neck, on your belt or simply stash it in a pocket or purse. Clipping the device to the necklace or belt was very easy and painless. It is more expensive than other options, but it is also more convenient and safe.
An important note with medical emergency alarms is the independence and dignity of many seniors or disabled persons. The Mobile and Active Guardians give the most freedom to users, specifically in wearability. I would recommend these units to my grandfather because he could wear them on his belt, wrist or in a pocket rather than as a necklace, potentially embarrassing him. Thinking of the struggle he would experience moving the classic pendant, showcased how much easier the Mobile and Active Guardians would be to use and how those models would make my grandparents feel safe without stripping them of their dignity.
What Customers Think
Many people have tried Medical Guardian and we’ve compiled some user reviews, both positive and negative, to help you understand the highs and lows of this product and service.
It was my mother’s idea for me to get a medical alert system because when my husband travels and If I have a fall she was concerned about me breaking bones because I am thin. I researched all of the companies and found that Medical Guardian was voted #1. When I called to inquire about the system I spoke to a very positive, knowledgeable person who directed me to the right product for me. I received it in 2 days, followed the instructions for set up which was very easy. I then tested the unit and tested it again a week later. I was then contacted to see if I was satisfied which I really appreciated. So I would recommend Medical Guardian to anyone who is alone and would like the security of this monitoring system. Renee, consumeraffairs.com 11/7/2014
My mom started falling a lot and she refused to let me order the Medical Guardian for her, saying it was for old people (she’s 73.). Then she fell outside after visiting a doctor and was in a remote area, unable to get up. She had to call 911 for assistance. I didn’t ask again, I just ordered the system and brought it to her house and set it up. She is SO thankful. She feels more confident knowing that assistance is just a push button away. Thanks for providing such a great service! Mark, consumeraffairs.com 11/6/2014
In August, I subscribed to this service with their Active Guardian device with fall detection. I prepaid for one year’s service. After receiving the device, I immediately discovered there were many times the device would not get a cellular connection, so, it would not work, even in my house. They claim they use AT&T for their cellular connections, yet, both my girlfriend and I use AT&T for our cell phones and they work fine in our house, and, the signal reads as very strong.
When I called their technical department on two occasions, they told me to try the device outdoors. So, what am I supposed to do, if I fall inside my house crawl outside to get it to work? So, I returned the device. I paid them upfront nearly $550 but they only refunded $399. They claim I am responsible for 3 months of service charges, even if the device did not work properly. I would strongly suggest that you consider a different service. I am now using 5 Star Great Call and it works fine. Bruce, consumeraffairs.com 9/14/15
Medical Guardian was a little slow on the delivery and the instructions on setting it up were less than explicit. I went to a competitor’s website and they had a video showing you how to set it up and that was very helpful. The instructions that came with the Medical Guardian were almost nil, so we were all disappointed in that. Walter, consumeraffairs.com 2/5/2015
Medical Alert Systems Offer a Peace of Mind
Overall, a medical alert system is worth the cost if it provides assurance and safety for loved ones in need, but you should take into account which system would be best suited to your lifestyle and the costs of monitoring. We believe that Medical Guardian, while expensive, offers the most up-to-date monitoring services, professionalism and security for those in the market for a medical alert system.