We may earn money when you click our links. Learn More. X

The Best Medical Alert Systems of 2019

Best Medical Alert DevicesA good medical alert system needs to be responsive and easy to use. It’s equally important that it not interfere with an active, everyday lifestyle. We’ve researched, ranked, and reviewed the top medical alert systems in the industry this year to determine which medical alert company we’d trust for our own families. Below you’ll find our ranking criteria, tips on what to look for in a good medical alert system, and our picks for the best medical alert systems of 2019.

Top 5 best medical alert systems of 2019

#1. Medical Guardian | Best overall medical alert system

Why Medical Guardian is our top recommendation

  • Customer service reps are compassionate and informative
  • Equipment offers more range and mobility than most
  • Pendants and bracelets have large, easy-to-use buttons
  • Fall detection is affordable

If we were choosing a medical alert system for ourselves or our families, we’d choose Medical Guardian. The system is affordable and easy to use, and most importantly, the customer service agents make us feel like they genuinely care. Between excellent customer service and caring, capable monitoring agents, we feel like Medical Guardian truly cares about our well-being.


  • No setup fee
  • No long-term contracts
  • 30-Day Money-back guarantee
  • Fall detection
  • 1,300-foot range*
  • 30-hour battery backup
  • Mobile/GPS tracking option
  • Lifetime warranty


  • No mobile app

Why we’d choose Medical Guardian to protect our families

  • Excellent customer service: Medical Guardian’s customer service agents care about customers as people and not just clients, and it shows in the way they interact with you. Medical Guardian was the only company to answer all of our questions and concerns without initiating sales talk or trying to get us to speak to a sales representative. Talking to Medical Guardian’s customer service feels like talking to a relative who’s genuinely concerned for your well-being. Strong customer service helps set Medical Guardian apart and is a big reason we think it’s the best medical alert company of 2018.
  • Easy-to-use equipment: Medical Guardian keeps its systems simple without sacrificing quality or usability. The emergency pendants and bracelets stand out because they have large, easy-to-press buttons but look similar to a digital watch and don’t attract unwanted attention. Medical Guardian also has multiple package options for you to choose from, including landline, cellular, GPS, and fall alert options.
  • Affordable fall detection: Although it’s not the cheapest fall detection option, Medical Guardian’s $34.95 monthly price for fall detection is still one of the most affordable prices in the industry—and it’s only $5 more than the entry price ($29.95). Since we consider fall detection the most important feature in a medical alert system, it’s worth paying a little extra to couple it with Medical Guardian’s excellent customer service.
  • Money-back guarantee: Not all companies offer a prorated refund for prepaid services, but Medical Guardian does. You can take advantage of lower monthly costs by using a prepaid discount without worrying whether you’ll get your money back if you need to cancel for any reason.
  • Longer range from base station: Depending on your package, Medical Guardian pendants work up to 1,300 feet away from your base station device. This gives you the freedom to move about your home or yard without going beyond the range of your base station device. Only LifeFone (#2) and Bay Alarm Medical (#3) offer similar ranges.
  • Transparent pricing: Instead of advertising the monthly rate based on the annual rate discount, Medical Guardian is honest and upfront about what the price will be if you pay month to month ($29.95). This way, the discount actually feels like a discount instead of a bait and switch.

Medical Guardian's pricing and packages

PackageClassic GuardianHome GuardianMobile GuardianActive Guardian
ConnectionLandlineCellularCellular w/GPSCellular w/GPS
Fall detection NoYesYesYes
Fall detection
Classic Guardian Home Guardian Mobile Guardian Active Guardian
$29.95/mo. $34.95/mo. $39.95/mo. $49.95/mo.
Landline Cellular Cellular w/GPS Cellular w/GPS
 No Yes Yes Yes

In addition to the options listed in the table above, Medical Guardian also offers a Family Guardian plan for $79.95 per month.

It comes with many of the same features and equipment you’d get with the other plans, but it also includes multiple activity sensors, a door sensor, and a mobile app for family members that sends alerts for activity and periods of inactivity. This plan is best suited for people who want to keep a close eye on their loved ones, even if they can’t be in the home with them.

*Prices in this table are based on month-to-month payments without a prepaid discount. Medical Guardian offers discounts when you pay for your service on a quarterly or annual basis.

Check out our Medical Guardian review for more details.

#2. LifeFone | Best medical alert system on a budget

LifeFone makes it easy to afford a medical alert system and has the lowest price of any of our top five. If you’re keeping to a budget but don’t want to compromise on fall detection, LifeFone offers fall detection as an add-on to its most affordable system, which starts at $24.95 per month.


  • No setup fee
  • No long-term contracts
  • 30-day free trial
  • Mobile app option (iOS, Android)
  • Prorated refund
  • Fall detection
  • 1,300-foot range*
  • 32-hour battery backup
  • Mobile/GPS tracking option
  • Lifetime warranty


  • Smaller buttons on bracelet

Why LifeFone may be the best medical alert system for you

  • Most affordable pricing: LifeFone caters to anyone on a budget by offering the lowest entry price ($24.95) of any medical alert monitoring company on our list. You’ll have to prepay for your services for a year to guarantee that rate, but with LifeFone’s prorated refund policy, you can pay up front knowing you won’t lose money if you need to cancel your service.
  • Lowest fall detection price: LifeFone offers an add-on fall detection pendant for $5-10 more a month. This makes LifeFone the best option if you’re looking for super affordable fall detection.
  • Mobile app: LifeFone offers a mobile app option that turns your cellphone into a medical alert system if you don’t want to carry around a GPS device. You can choose between the Mobile Alert plan for $5.95 per month and the Family Guard plan that starts at $9.95 per month. These alternatives work great for someone constantly on the go, but keep in mind neither of these options offers any form of fall detection. For more information on LifeFone’s mobile app, click here.
  • Longer range from base station: Like Medical Guardian, LifeFone offers a range of up to 1,300 feet from your base station device with certain packages. This range means you can go in the basement, work in the garage, or relax in the yard without going beyond your range limits.

LifeFone's pricing and packages

PackageAt Home LandlineAt Home Cellular w/ Optional Fall DetectionAt Home and On-The-GoAt Home and On-The-Go w/Pendant
ConnectionLandlineCellularCellular w/ GPSCellular w/ GPS
Fall detection+$5/mo.+$5/mo.+$10/mo.+$5/mo.
Fall detection
At Home Landline At Home Cellular w/ Optional Fall Detection At Home and On-The-Go At Home and On-The-Go w/Pendant
$24.95/mo. $30.95/mo. $36.95/mo. $42.95/mo.
Landline Cellular Cellular w/ GPS Cellular w/ GPS
+$5/mo. +$5/mo. +$10/mo. +$5/mo.

*Prices in this table are based on month-to-month payments without a prepaid discount. LifeFone offers discounts when you pay for your service on a quarterly or annual basis.

Check out our LifeFone review for a more in-depth look.

#3. Bay Alarm Medical | Best medical alert system for an active lifestyle

Bay Alarm Medical shines for its commitment to mobility. The ultra-compact and lightweight GPS medical alert system wins for the best mobile option on our list. If you’re looking for a medical alert system that won’t slow down a very active lifestyle, Bay Alarm Medical should do nicely.


  • No contracts
  • 14-day trial period
  • AARP, AAA, and USAA discounts
  • 72-hour GPS battery life
  • Mobile/GPS tracking option
  • 1,000-foot range
  • Fall detection
  • Free spouse monitoring coverage (with purchase of second pendant)


  • No in-house monitoring center
  • No refund on prepaid service
  • Bulky equipment
  • In-home cellular and mobile GPS packages require AT&T or T-Mobile coverage
  • No mobile app

Why you’d choose Bay Alarm Medical

  • Longest range for entry-level package: You don’t have to decide between saving money and extending your mobility. Bay Alarm Medical’s medical alert systems come standard with a 1,000-foot range from your base station.
  • Waterproof GPS wearable: You can take your GPS device in the shower or bathtub where slippery surfaces may cause concern.
  • GPS battery life: Bay Alarm Medical’s GPS battery life lasts for up to 72 hours per charge, which is double the battery life of its closest competitors. You won’t have to worry about your device losing power while you’re out living your life.

Bay Alarm Medical's pricing and packages

PackageIn-Home LandlineIn-Home CellularGPS Mobile Help ButtonIn-Home +GPS Bundle
ConnectionLandlineCellularCellular w/GPSCellular w/GPS
Fall detection+$9.95/mo.+$9.95/mo.No+$9.95/mo.
Fall detection
In-Home Landline In-Home Cellular GPS Mobile Help Button In-Home +GPS Bundle
$19.95/mo. $19.95/mo. $29.95/mo. $39.95/mo.
Landline Cellular Cellular w/GPS Cellular w/GPS
+$9.95/mo. +$9.95/mo. No +$9.95/mo.

*Prices in this table are based on month-to-month payments without a prepaid discount. Bay Alarm Medical offers discounts when you pay for your service on a quarterly or semi-annual basis.

Check out our Bay Alarm Medical review for more details.

#4. Alert1 | Best medical alert system for recognition

Over 250,000 families have chosen Alert1 Medical Alert Systems to protect their loved ones, making it one of the most popular choices available. Alert1 keeps it simple, offering traditional landline medical alert systems, but has recently stepped up its game and added fall detection and cellular options as well. Although we love the 30-day money-back guarantee, Alert1’s no-refund policy keeps it from cracking the top three.


  • Automatic monthly testing
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Fall detection
  • Mobile/GPS tracking
  • Voice extender option ($99)
  • Transparent pricing


  • No refund policy after 30 days
  • No in-house call monitoring center
  • No mobile app

Why Alert1 may be the best medical alert system for you

  • 30-day money-back guarantee: Alert1 lets you try out the medical alert system for 30 days with no commitment. If you don’t like it, you can return it for a full refund. Keep in mind that after 30 days, there’s no refund available for prepaid services.*
  • Voice extender: Alert1 offers an add-on device called a voice extender that allows you to speak to a medical alert monitoring agent the same way you would through the base station. So if you can’t hear the base station in a certain room in your house, you can add a voice extender. It’s a nice addition, knowing you can hear and speak to a representative during an emergency, no matter which room you’re in.

Alert1’s pricing and packages

PackageHomeFall DetectionMobileu00a0Mobile + Fall DetectionHome + Mobile + Fall Detection
ConnectionLandlineLandlineCellularCellular w/ GPSCellular w/ GPS
Fall detectionNoYesNoYesYes
Fall detection
Home Fall Detection Mobileu00a0 Mobile + Fall Detection Home + Mobile + Fall Detection
$39.95 $45.95 $45.95 $59.95 $69.95
Landline Landline Cellular Cellular w/ GPS Cellular w/ GPS
No Yes No Yes Yes

*Prices in this table are based on month-to-month payments without a prepaid discount. Alert1 offers discounts when you pay for your service annually.

Check out our Alert1 medical alert system review for more details.

#5. ADT Medical Alert | Best medical alert system to bundle with home security

Existing ADT customers or someone who craves consistency might consider ADT Medical Alert for its price-lock guarantee and low monthly monitoring costs. We really like that this system integrates with ADT’s home security system, so if you’re looking for home security on top of a medical alert device, you should consider ADT.


  • Price-lock guarantee
  • Low monthly monitoring
  • Easy to use
  • Landline and cellular options


  • One-time activation fee (can be waived)
  • 12-month contract for cellular
  • No mobile app
  • Inconsistent customer service
  • Mixed customer reviews
  • Additional charge per accessory
  • Pendant: +$5/mo.
  • Fall detection pendant: +$10/mo.

Why ADT Medical Alert could be right for you

  • Low monthly costs: ADT Medical alert actually beats our number-one pick, Medical Guardian, for lower entry-level pricing at $27.99 per month.
  • Price-lock guarantee: ADT’s ForeveRate program means you can lock in your monthly monitoring price to make sure it never changes.

ADT Medical Alert’s system packages

PackageMedical Alert BasicMedical Alert PlusOn-The-Go
ConnectionLandlineLandlineCellular w/ GPS
Fall detectionNoYesYes
Fall detection
Medical Alert Basic Medical Alert Plus On-The-Go
$29.99/mo. $35.99/mo. $39.99/mo.
Landline Landline Cellular w/ GPS
No Yes Yes

*Prices in this table are based on month-to-month payments without a prepaid discount. ADT Medical Alert offers discounts when you pay for your service on a quarterly or annual basis.

How does a medical alert system work?

A medical alert system gives you the ability to contact family, friends, or emergency medical professionals during a medical emergency.

  • Step 1: Press the Help button.
  • Step 2: Speak to a trained medical alert operator to verify you need help.
  • Step 3: The medical alert operator will alert a family member or friend, or dispatch emergency response on your behalf.

Although a medical alert system will not prevent a medical emergency, it can help reduce its severity by providing immediate emergency response.

What makes a good medical alert system?

Things like equipment, usability, pricing, and overall experience helped us determine which medical alert systems we’d recommend to our own family members. With them in mind, we put each medical alert system under the microscope and compared hundreds of different data points.

Medical Guardian medical alert equipment

Here’s what to look for when deciding which medical alert system will work best for your needs.

Fall detection

In our opinion, fall detection is the single most important feature of any medical alert system. When a fall detection device triggers, it will automatically contact the medical alert monitoring station on the wearer’s behalf.

More severe falls can make it so the wearer can’t press or reach the emergency help button. Fall detection provides aid in instances where the wearer may be unconscious or otherwise unable to activate their wearable device and takes the “what if I can’t call for help?” scenario out of the equation, which is why we recommend it so highly.

Most medical alert systems do not offer fall detection as a standard feature, but we highly recommend spending a little extra to add this feature to your medical alert system. We’ve provided the minimum entry price for fall detection in our prices section.

Base station

Medical Guardian medical alert base stationMost medical alert systems use the same basic setup. There’s the main console, or base station, that connects either through a landline or cellular signal. These base stations are lifelines that provide two-way communication to a medical alert monitoring center. The base station has a big emergency button and a two-way audio speaker that lets you communicate with the medical alert central monitoring center.


When we say range, we’re referring to how far your wearable pendant or bracelet will work from the base station. Choose a medical alert system that allows you enough space to roam and live your life. Ranges can vary anywhere from 350 to 1,300 feet.

Medical alert pendants and bracelets

Medical Guardian medical alert bracelets and pendantsMany medical alert systems offer both pendants and bracelets as wearable buttons that can trigger your medical alert system. We recommend using whichever is easiest and most comfortable for your lifestyle.

Here are a few things to consider with wearables:

  • Most fall detection devices are pendants.
  • Most wearables are not equipped with two-way voice. This means you’ll have to be within vocal range of the base station or have GPS to speak with a medical alert representative. If the system triggers and the medical alert representative can’t hear you, they will automatically dispatch an emergency response team to your location.
  • You have to stay within range of your base station or GPS device.

GPS medical alert device

Medical Guardian medical alert equipment including gps, pendant, and braceletGPS medical alert devices allow you to go anywhere you want, as long as you have a cellular signal, and they can communicate with a medical alert monitoring center when you press the button on the device itself or a wearable device.

If your daily routine takes you all around the house, into the yard, or away from your home entirely, you may want to consider a GPS medical alert option. These devices work the same way as standard medical alert systems but are more compact and portable. They will easily fit inside a purse or coat pocket.

Cellular vs. landline

Most medical alert companies offer both landline and cellular options. Landline options generally have lower monthly costs but can limit your mobility to the range of your base station device. Cellular devices allow for a wider range of use and can even function as GPS/mobile devices as long as you can get a cellular signal.

Customer service

Customer service ranks high on our priority list when choosing which services we recommend. Many companies use very similar technologies and prices, but what set them apart are the experience and service that they provide. Here are our customer service ratings for the top five medical alert systems of 2018:

Medical GuardianLifeFoneBay Alarm MedicalAlert1ADT Medical Alert
Customer service rating4.65/54.65/53.65/52.56/53.76/5
Learn moreView plansView plansView plansView plansView plans
Customer service rating
Learn more
Medical Guardian LifeFone Bay Alarm Medical Alert1 ADT Medical Alert
4.65/5 4.65/5 3.65/5 2.56/5 3.76/5
View plans View plans View plans View plans View plans

Response time

On average, it takes 30 to 60 seconds from the time you press your emergency help button to get a representative on the line, ready to assist you. This response time varies between companies and even devices, but you’ll rarely wait longer than a minute. Keep in mind, the time you wait for physical help to arrive will depend on family members’, friends’, or an emergency response team’s travel times.


We like to give the benefit of the doubt to any service that we review, but we do look heavily into what consumers say about the service they receive. We looked at overall comments from existing customers for each company to see whether their experiences were positive or negative. We suggest digging in to customer feedback as well as how the company responded to complaints to help guide you in your decision.


So how much will a medical alert system cost? Most medical alarm companies have prepaid service agreements instead of contracted services like home security or mobile phones. If you pay for six or twelve months up front, you can get a discounted price on your medical alert monitoring service.

It’s worth noting that not all medical alert companies offer refunds on prepaid services. So if you cancel for any reason (including death), you might not get your money back. We recommend choosing a company with a prorated refund policy.

Minimum price for fall detection

Most entry-level medical alert system packages do not offer fall detection. You’ll have to either pay for an add-on fall detection pendant like you do with LifeFone (+$5 per month) or step up to the next level of service. We believe that fall detection is a must for any medical alert system and highly recommend springing for the extra cost.

Medical alert companyMedical GuardianLifeFoneBay Alarm MedicalAlert1ADT Medical Alert
Minimum price for fall detection$34.95/mo.$29.95/mo.$35.95/mo.$35.95/mo.$33.99/mo.
System range600 ft.480 ft.800 ft.400 ft.600 ft.
Learn moreView plansView plansView plansView plansView plans
Medical alert company
Minimum price for fall detection
System range
Learn more
Medical Guardian LifeFone Bay Alarm Medical Alert1 ADT Medical Alert
$34.95/mo. $29.95/mo. $35.95/mo. $35.95/mo. $33.99/mo.
600 ft. 480 ft. 800 ft. 400 ft. 600 ft.
View plans View plans View plans View plans View plans

Monitoring cost

Very few medical alert companies lock you into contracts. Instead, they give you a discount on your monthly rate for paying up front—typically three, six, or twelve months at a time. You’ll want to double check whether the medical alert company offers a money-back guarantee or prorated refund for prepaid services—not all of them do.


You won’t pay activation, installation, or cancellation fees with most medical alert companies, but keep your eye out for a few potential pricing pitfalls that can feel a lot like fees.

Many companies will charge up to a $350 replacement fee if you don’t return the equipment within 30 days of cancellation. Because most medical alert companies lease their equipment, you typically won’t see any sort of equipment charge up front. However, it’s good to remember that you’re not buying this equipment and that you’ll have to return it when you cancel your service.

Although it’s technically not a cancellation fee, many companies don’t offer prorated refunds for prepaid services, which can feel a lot like a fee. Think of it this way: if you cancel after six months of service but you prepaid for twelve months, you’re paying for six months of service you don’t need, and you won’t get that money back. We recommend asking the medical alert company you choose whether or not it offers prorated refunds before you prepay for your service. It could save you a lot of money in the long run.

When should I consider a medical alert system?

The fact that you’re even considering a medical alert system, whether for yourself or your loved one, means it’s time. Think of a medical alert system like a seat belt—99% of the time you won’t need one, but it can save your life when you do.

Here are some questions to help determine whether you should consider a medical alert system:

  • Have I stumbled, fallen, or felt dizzy in the past year?
  • In the past year, have I been in the hospital or the emergency room for any reason?
  • Do I suffer from any of the following chronic ailments?
    • Arthritis
    • COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
    • Diabetes
    • Heart disease
    • Osteoporosis
    • Stroke
  • Do I take any medications that could make me dizzy or drowsy?
  • Do I rely on a cane, walker, wheelchair, etc., for day-to-day mobility?
  • Do I need help bathing, dressing, or preparing meals?
  • How often am I home alone?

Medical alert systems: The rest of the pack

Here are a few more medical alert companies you might consider that didn’t crack our top five medical alert systems:

LifeStation Review

View Plans

LifeStation provides free replacements and repairs to any of your equipment. With a 500-foot base station range, it’s about in the middle of its competitors. LifeStation does not charge any additional equipment or activation fees and it doesn’t lock you into a contract. At the same time, there is nothing significant that stands out about LifeStation.


  • No long-term contract
  • Medical alert bracelet and necklace options
  • Waterproof
  • Automatic weekly tester to make sure device works
  • 5 day battery backup


  • No fall detection included (additional $7/month)
  • Only 500-foot pendant range
  • No voice-to-voice communication on the pendant

Life Alert Review

Life Alert is a big name in the medical alert device field, but it doesn’t offer fall detection, its website has practically no information on it, and the company charges many fees associated with its services. Life Alert seems like it might be more interested in marketing than with helping you, although it does have a good track record.


  • Lifetime warranty
  • Used by many (well-known brand due to TV ads)
  • Medical alert bracelet and necklace options


  • Harsh cancellation policy
  • Several add-on fees
  • No fall detection

GreatCall Splash Review

GreatCall Splash is one of the least-expensive medical alert devices we reviewed. GreatCall Splash is also one of the most stylish medical alert devices. It comes standard with GPS, so it works from anywhere that service is available. However, it has a very short battery life, so there’s a risk of being without help when you need it.


  • Waterproof
  • Works anywhere due to the GPS inside the device (not just inside your home)
  • Can clip onto your clothing or hook onto your keychain
  • Medical alert bracelet and necklace options


  • Activation fee
  • Doesn't cover the entire U.S.
  • Need to recharge daily
  • Need a good Verizon network connection or the device won't work well

MobileHelp Review

MobileHelp is pretty straightforward in its offerings. It has a few packages available and an optional fall button that you can add on for an extra fee. It gives you a prorated refund if you pay for an annual plan and return your system early for any reason. What it really came down to was MobileHelp’s price. This company has one of the most expensive services in this review.


  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • 600 foot range
  • Battery life of 4–5 years on wearables
  • Waterproof wearables
  • Battery backup on base station


  • One of the more expensive vs. competition
  • Extra fee for fall detection
  • No voice extender option

Philips Lifeline Review

Philips Lifeline has the normal offerings and includes a mobile/GPS app. The company offers 100 different languages so there is a good chance it will have the one you or your loved one needs. The biggest downside is the cost: the premier package from Philips Lifeline, GoSafe, is pretty expensive.


  • No contract
  • No equipment fee
  • Mobile/GPS app
  • Support for 100 languages


  • Expensive packages
  • Activation fee
  • Discontinued activity monitoring option

Rescue Alert Review

What sets Rescue Alert apart is that it offers support in about 150 languages. There are no extra fees involved and you can purchase the equipment brand new or refurbished so it’s yours forever. However, Rescue Alert has a limited range of equipment and not the most impressive technology.


  • Supports for 150 languages available
  • 600-foot range
  • No activation or installation fee
  • Waterproof necklace and bracelet
  • 30-day money-back guarantee


  • Repairs and replacements are not included
  • No additional features

Other medical alert systems

  • AlarmCare by AlarmForce
  • AlarmSouth
  • Ally Home Security
  • Care Innovations Link-Mobile
  • Connect America
  • Consumer Cellular Ally
  • Critical Signal Technologies (CST)
  • iHelp+ 3G
  • Life Link Response
  • Lively
  • LogicMark
  • Mytrex
  • Prime Medical Alert
  • SafeGuardian
  • Senior Safety
  • Tunstall
  • VRI

Nationwide vs. regional coverage

We chose to focus on only medical alert companies available nationwide even though many regional medical alert companies have excellent reputations within the industry. You can use the same criteria we used to judge whether or not a regional medical alarm system will fit your needs. Just keep in mind that if you move outside of a company’s coverage, you’ll have to switch providers.

Why you can trust our reviews

We pride ourselves on our trustworthy, unbiased reviews. Unlike many reviews sites, we do not allow monetary affiliation or relationships with the merchants listed on this page to influence our rankings. We do work with affiliate links and partnerships, but only after we have completed an unbiased review. This means we do receive a commission when you click on a link and make a purchase (product pricing and service quality will be exactly the same for you). We appreciate your respect and understanding that this is how we can afford to do such comprehensive research that provides the highest-quality and most up-to-date information.

For more details on how we complete our reviews, how we’re able to do what we do, or our integrity policies, read our review process.

Do you have experience with medical alert systems?

Tell us your experiences with medical alert systems. Which company did you decide to go with? Was it a good solution? Would you recommend a different company? Which is the best (or worst) in your opinion? Leave us a comment below to let us know your thoughts on medical alert systems.

Was this article helpful?

Thank you for your feedback!

Tell us how we can make your experience better next time.

Back to Top

We use cookies to enhance your website experience. By continuing to use our site you agree to the use of cookies in accordance with our policy. Click for more information to find out what cookies we use, what they do and how you can disable them.