Home Security and Medical Alert Systems: Advancements for Seniors and Shut-Ins
Senior citizens and shut-ins no longer need to fear living alone. A retired Southern California police officer explains how improvements in two-way voice technologies can enhance the physical an emotional well being of those who have little choice but to spend most of their time at home. Watchdog Security Services, a home security and medical alert systems provider, serves the needs of homeowners in the following Riverside and San Bernardino communities: Riverside, San Bernardino, Hemet, Menifee, Wildomar, Murrieta, Temecula, Corona, Palm Springs,.Moreno Valley, Redlands, Victorville, Ontario, Rialto, Lake Elsinore, Rancho Cucamonga, Sun City, and Chino Hills.

RIVERSIDE CA -- September 8, 2004 -- Mabel is 86 and fiercely independent. Widowed for seven years and coping with rheumatoid arthritis, she still loves living in the cozy single-story home she and her husband Frank built nearly 40 years ago.

Her daughter, Jane, her husband, Paul, and their two young children live just an hour away, and Mabel enjoys her grandchildren抯 frequent visits. She has a close-knit circle of friends and plays bridge once a week at the local senior center.

While Mabel still misses her husband, she still finds life satisfying. Positive attitude aside, her arthritis seems to get a little worse with each passing month and she worries about one day falling, breaking a bone and, living alone, not being able to summon help.

Jane and Paul, a police officer, are also concerned about Mabel抯 declining health, as well as the increasing number of burglaries and assaults on seniors in Mabel抯 part of town. They have suggested that Mabel consider moving to an assisted living facility but she is adamant about maintaining her independence and staying where she is most comfortable ?in her own home.

Mabel抯 situation is typical of many seniors and shut-ins who now find themselves living alone. The need to remain as independent as possible conflicts with the twin realities of declining health and increasing crime.

Advances in home security and medical alert technologies are helping solve those legitimate conflicts. According to Nigel Smithers, President and CEO of Watchdog Protection Industries, Inc. recent advances in 搕wo way voice?technologies are providing improved peace of mind for not only senior citizens and shut-ins, but their loved ones as well.

揟hese new two-way voice systems combine the best features of traditional security alarms and dedicated medical alert devices,?he says. 揥hen a subscriber experiences a medical emergency and cannot reach a phone, he or she has only to press a button on a neck pendant or wristband and the alarm monitoring company operator activates the 憈wo way?feature.

揟his puts the subscriber in direct voice contact with an operator using a speaker/microphone built into the alarm panel which can be heard from anywhere in the home. If the victim has fallen and cannot get up, for example, the operator immediately dispatches local medical personnel to the home, all the while reassuring the victim that help is on the way by maintaining voice dialogue through the alarm panel. The built-in microphone is very sensitive, and can pick up even a whisper from anywhere within a 2500 square foot home,?Smithers says.

The technology goes a lot further than that, Smithers explains. 揚art of the system features a 抣ack of use?sensor, which alerts the monitoring station if the user fails to arm or disarm the alarm within a specified period of time. Thus, if the client cannot get out of bed or has lapsed into a coma, emergency personnel and relatives are notified right away.?

The same features help protect the user in case of a break-in. 揑f the alarm system is armed and someone attempts to gain entry, a siren will sound and the monitoring operator will activate the two-way voice channel., attempting to contact the client,?Smithers says.

If the client answers and provides a predetermined password indicating that all is well, no further action is taken. On the other hand, if the client does not respond, the operator will listen for signs of a struggle or an intruder moving around and immediately dispatch local law enforcement. Knowing that a true emergency is occurring, police can respond in enough time, and in enough force, to effectively deal with the situation.

揟he real break throughs are cost and ease of use,?Smithers says. 揅ompared to mere medical alert systems, this advanced technology can be obtained for just a couple more dollars a month which helps those on fixed incomes to take advantage of a full range of services without breaking the budget.?

揟hey are not the least bit complicated either so they are also very user friendly,?he says.

As a former police officer himself with over 20 years experience, Smithers knows first-hand the difference between responding to a burglary in progress where a victim抯 life and safety are in peril, or to a mere alarm activation which may or may not be a false alarm.

According to Smithers, 揅ombined with wireless security technology, these new two-way voice systems offer reliability and fast, clean installations. The user抯 privacy is assured, as the two-way voice feature is only activated when a security sensor is tripped or when the user calls for help by pressing either a button on the control panel or on the neck pendant.?

揟he result is that seniors like Mabel can enjoy living independently with the peace of mind that comes from knowing that they are no longer really alone, even if they live alone,?he concluded.

Watchdog Protection Industries, Inc. is a state licensed alarm installation and service company based in Hemet, CA that specializes in designing and supplying integrated home security and medical alert systems. He can personally be reached via nigel@watchdog-alarms.com or reached by phone at (951) 929-8800.

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