Senior Citizen's Guide digital books
Senior Citizen's Guide

Safe At Home
Security Issues for Senior Citizens

Personal Emergency Response Systems (P.E.R.S.) have been available for several years, yet many people are not aware of their potential life saving value. The purpose of these systems is to offer a quick link to help for anyone who is home alone for any portion of the day or night. Usually a press of a button is all that is needed to start the response cycle which may include friends, family members, or emergency services such as ambulance, police, or fire department.

To people who suffer with chronic illness or are recovering from a medical procedure or surgery, the possibility of an at home emergency may weigh heavily on their minds becoming a source of high stress. For these people and others who wish to remain in the comfort of their homes for as long as possible, the reassurance of being able to push a button and summon help brings both peace of mind and stress reduction.

Most P.E.R.S. systems usually have two elements in the user residence. A portable help button often worn as a pendant and a console communicator or receiver base connected to the user's existing telephone line. These elements will communicate to a response center which may be located locally or nationally. The monitors in the response center then alert either the subscriber's personal contacts or medical caregivers to come to the subscriber's aid.

P.E.R.S. systems offer varying levels of convenience and protection. Two-way voice communication, built-in telephone handsets, and other options work with the client's existing telephone. Communicators are usually teamed with a personal pendant that will send an emergency signal from anywhere in the subscriber residence; however, all companies are different.

At this time, most P.E.R.S. are not covered by Medicaid, Medicare, or personal medical insurance. Cost varies depending on the system you choose. Most durable medical equipment companies that supply hospital beds, wheelchairs, or oxygen for in-home use can recommend a P.E.R.S. company.

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