Medical alert systems were created to enable seniors, especially those with disabilities or health problems, to live more independently by having the reassurance that help is a click of a button away. Early systems connected through a landline, but many systems today also include cellular technology, providing service on the go as well as in the home.
Rescue Alert was founded in 1986 by Richard Bangerter who was already in the emergency communications industry. He expanded into the medical alert market when he incorporated Mytrex, Inc and set up the headquarters of the company in Utah. Since then, Rescue Alert has been at the forefront of adopting new innovative technologies, such as two-way communication with operators standing by for requests for help.
This guide covers the Rescue Alert medical alert system, including pricing and other options, as well as the pros and cons of Rescue Alert products and services.
What You Should Know
Rescue Alert operates its own 24/7 response center. One key feature of Rescue Alert is that the fully trained operators can contact first responders or designated family, friends or neighbors in situations where costly emergency services are not necessary. This may be advantageous for families that would prefer to avoid ambulance and EMT costs when a loved one can make a quick in-person visit to assess the situation further.
Rescue Alert stands out with its multiple connection abilities. The MDX base unit not only can connect through a landline, but it can also connect through VoIP, cable and cellular adapters. The multiple connections give an added layer of protection because there are other methods of connection if landline phone service is interrupted or temporarily unavailable.
Rescue Alert does not have a two-way connection through its wearable or wall-mounted panic buttons. Instead, communication with the Response Center is done through the speaker on the base unit. Because of this, the speaker is very loud, the loudest on the market. Seniors in small residences would have no problem hearing or responding to the base unit speaker, even in another room.
||MXD – Landline Base Unit
||Rescue Alert GPS
||Landline, VoIP, Cable/DSL
||AT&T 3G Network
||Choice of pendant or wrist-mounted button
Wall buttons are optional and are an additional $5 per month
||80 hours, battery in help button is automatically monitored and replaced as needed
||Panic button is waterproof
Base unit is not waterproof
|Unit is waterproof
||Only on base unit
||Yes – $10 per month additional charge
Rescue Alert offers two basic plans: rental and purchase options. With the rental, there are no upfront costs for the equipment, and there is only a charge for the monthly monitoring service. The purchase options are divided into two further plans: monthly monitoring and a one-time payment. All plans include the MXD base unit, panic button, monitoring and an option of a free lockbox or one additional panic button.
Rescue Alert Plans and Pricing
The rental plans have monthly, quarterly and annual options. The monthly option is a straightforward $32.95 per month. The quarterly option breaks down to $29.95 per month but is paid in $89.95 quarterly installments. The annual rental plan works out to $27.95 per month but is paid in a once-per-year payment of $335.40. All rental plans include the MXD base unit, panic button, monitoring and an option of a free lockbox or an additional wearable panic button.
Monthly purchase plan
With the monthly purchase plan, there is an upfront fee of $199 and a monthly fee of $15.95 per month. The user owns the equipment, so they don’t have to worry about hidden fees for unreturned equipment.
The one-time payment plan is $849 with no monthly monitoring fees or any other additional costs. The website does not disclose a time frame for the length of the monitoring included with the one-time payment plan.
Pros and Cons of the Rescue Alert System
Every medical alert system has pros and cons, and it is important to weigh them out when choosing a medical alert service.
- Experienced medical alert company that has been in business for more than three decades
- Rescue Alert owns its own fully trained response center that includes multilingual operators
- The base unit speaker is very loud
- Purchase options are available to avoid unreturned equipment fees
- A one-time purchase option is available for those that prefer not to pay monthly monitoring fees
- Multiple connection types are available
- Waterproof wearable panic buttons are safe to wear in the shower
- Wearable panic buttons can be worn on the wrist
- Additional wall-mounted panic buttons are available as an add-on
- Fall detection is available as an add-on, but not included for those families who prefer not to have potential false alarms
- Users can designate family, friends and neighbors as first contacts unless there is an immediate emergency that requires first responders
- Rescue Alert maintains a rating of A+ with the Better Business Bureau
- Expensive compared to other medical alert systems
- No two-way communication with panic buttons
- No mobile devices currently available
- Call center response times are reported as slower than other systems
- No range for the base unit is listed on the website (only the myActive Alert pendant is listed as having a range of 600 to 1,000 feet)