Medical pendant / Personal alarm for elderly - suggestions?

Just seeking some information on recommended medical alarms for my elderly dad who has occasional falls at home

A few ideal features:

Easy to use
calls directly to assistance
Dad has limited English skills so if info (location, name, age etc) could be sent directly when the button is pressed
No landline based alarms

Thanks in advance!


  • +2 votes

    Purchased this one recently for an elderly parent. Choice reviewed medical alarms in 2017 and again in 2018 and this one scored top rating.
    LiveLife Mobile Alarm with Fall Detect, Hands Free & GPS.
    It provides for up to five preset contacts so we put Ambulance in first position and then four relatives and friends who live in close proximity to our parent. It has a mobile phone SIM that enables us to call the number and speak to the wearer. Also, by sending an SMS to its mobile number we can find out where the person wearing it is and other info such as the speed the person is travelling at along with the level of charge on the device’s rechargeable battery.
    It arrived with all the settings reinstalled after we provided the required info over the phone.
    The normal retail price is $497 but it’s invariably available for $447. After year 1 there’s an annual charge of $45 pa, which I reckon is very reasonable.
    I reckon it’s a 5-Star product.


    Keen to follow this post as I'm thinking of getting one for my mum. My biggest concern of some of these products is the non-monitored nature of the '5 preset numbers to dial' which then plays a recorded message. Typically child1, child2, etc until 000 last and then no information about the medical situation is given to the ambo's. What if the elderly person accidentally presses the SOS button and an ambulance shows up on their door 15mins later? The LiveLife Mobile Alarm gets around this somewhat by allowing to speak to the elderly person, but why pay an ongoing fee for this service when free SOS apps already exist for mobile phones?

    The only system that I believe has the live-answering service is Vitalcall which is ~$40/month… not cheap.


      Is an app on a phone as easy to activate whilst having a stroke or with broken wrists after a fall?

      And even though it may tie up an ambulance for a false alarm, false alarms are factored into ambulance staffing and dispatch. You would be surprised how many calls to ambulance are either hoaxes, false alarms or even non-medical requirements. From memory the hoax calls per month in Australia can exceed 165,000.


        I don't think there's a practical solution for accidental presses so you'll just have to teach the wearer how to use the alarm/pendant, but the logic that "there are already a huge burden on emergency services by way of hoaxes so adding to it isn't a problem" doesn't really work.


          Maybe they can think of an easy locking system or a very easy two step process which will call emergency services

        • +1 vote

          @mizazn: The entire point of an emergency pendant is that it's extraordinarily easy and simple to activate in case of an emergency. Adding any kind of additional step to activate it would defeat the purpose.


          No one said a two step process needs to be hard champ


    my husband has livelife alarm. Comes with sim card so you need to renew it. I use Aldi sim. Alarm works like mobile phone so you can speak to wearer when it activates as they accidentally lean againt reception counter or tree trunk when they are up a ladder! Also can see where they are on GPS in real time and you can ignore call if you know they are at home with a carer. Talk function is reassuring for everyone.

  • +1 vote

    I bought two of these about 6 months ago - one for my father and one for my grandmother due to independent health issues. I purchased them off eBay, though unfortunately the listing is no longer. Only issue I had was a faulty charger base on one which they replaced, but otherwise the device works quite well. It was similar to this listing however I picked mine up at about $190 after discount codes on a slightly cheaper listing (~$220 listing). You could probably stack a discount code and recent discounted eBay egift cards to get it under $200.

    I then got an ALDI 365 day SIM card (comes with $5 credit) to use in the device, which recommends Telstra network.

    My understanding is that some of the above mentioned companies sell the devices pre-programmed and include a SIM too (and inflate the price to cover this), so worth thinking about your value, though it seems some of the prices have dropped a bit since I looked 6 months ago. The setup is done via simple text message codes (refer manual) from a separate mobile phone (very easy). The device replies with a confirmation text which uses up prepaid credit. I would have used up about 15 messages changing settings etc to our personal preferences.

    Something to note, is that from experience, if you have the device set to regularly track (not even the heaviest setting), the battery drains in ~3 days. When the battery is low, it sends a text to all programmed numbers (up to 5), using up prepaid credit. We now have setup a 2 day charge routine to avoid this.

    We used up the $5 ALDI included credit within a few months due to set up and battery reminders but once we had it all worked out, we rarely use any credit at all now.

    The built-in microphone and operation seems quite good from the tests we ran (ringing the device).

    All-in-all, very happy with the product.

    Hope this helps anyone else out there looking.

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