SeniorLiving.org is compensated by some providers on this site. This helps us keep our content free. Read more
We earn commission from some links. Read more

Medicare Annual Enrollment is Happening Now! Everything You Need to Know

Read Our Guide

Best Medical Alert Systems with Fall Detection for Seniors

The 3 Best Brands
Accolades Best Overall Fall Detection Best GPS Fall Detection Best Mobile Fall Detection
Fall detection starting at $10 per month $10 per month $10 per month
Monthly rates starting at $29.95 $21.95 $19.99
Warranty Lifetime Lifetime One year
GPS options Yes Yes Yes
In-home coverage range Up to 1,300 feet Up to 1,000 feet No in-home systems
How to Order
Call for best price:
855-919-4522
Call for best price:
844-946-1712
Call for best price:
(866) 461-7793
Scroll right for more options

It’s expected that 3.4 million individuals worldwide will be using medical alert systems by 2021, and 2.4 million of those users will be in the United States.1 With the popularity of medical alert systems on the rise, medical alert companies are offering more features and options to keep seniors living safely at home for as long as possible. Fall detection is one of those popular, life-saving features. Since around 25 percent of older adults fall each year,2 selecting a system with fall detection is something we’d highly recommend.

When shopping for a medical alert system for yourself, or a loved one, fall detection is an important feature to consider. We’ve researched and assessed more than a dozen medical alert systems on the market and included the top systems offering fall detection here. Whether you’re looking for a budget-friendly system or one that is ideal for two people, this guide will take you through all the details when choosing the best medical alert system with fall detection for you.

How We Selected The Best Medical Alert Systems with Fall Detection

After our research and testing, we have chosen the best medical alert systems with fall detection that met four important criteria.

  1. No long-term contracts: With these companies, you’ll be able to cancel your service at any time. Other medical alert systems may require you to sign a contract that locks you in long term, which we’re not big fans of. With these companies, you’ll have the freedom to cancel your service at any time.
  2. Mobile option: Since 56 percent of falls happen outside of the home,3 it’s important that you have fall protection both in the home and on the go. These providers offer systems that can be used in both settings.
  3. Great value: There’s nothing worse than paying good money for a product, only to find out the value doesn’t match the price tag. Whether you need a medical alert system that provides simple protection at a low price, or you don’t mind spending a little extra for all the bells and whistles, we’ve made sure these medical alert systems are worth the investment. If we wouldn’t consider it worth the cost for our friends and family, we won’t recommend it to you either!
  4. 24/7 monitoring: Falls can occur at any time, which is why it’s oh-so-important that your alert system with fall detection is linked to a 24/7 professional monitoring center. Whether a fall occurs in the middle of the night or the afternoon, all of the providers on our list will be there to help around the clock.
Active Guardian

Our Editor Jeff Hoyt testing out one of the many systems with fall detection we rated during our research!

Do I Need Automatic Fall Detection?

If you’re asking yourself, “Do I really need fall detection?” keep in mind that every second a person 65 or older experiences a fall.4 Since falls happen so frequently among older adults, we highly recommend medical alert systems built with automatic fall detection. The feature gives seniors added protection and provides peace of mind for caregivers when they’re away.

Fall detection is an innovative technology built into wearable pendants that detect a fall even if the user is unconscious and/or unable to press their medical alert button. When a fall is detected, trained operators are alerted and can assess the situation within seconds, dispatching emergency services and alerting caregivers if needed.

Though we like to think all older adults should be protected with fall detection, it is especially important if you or your loved one has recently experienced any of the medical events listed below. Research has shown they can be precursors to a fall.

Cognitive Decline

If you’ve noticed a decline in cognitive function or mental health in yourself or an older adult in your life, this can be a precursor for a fall. For seniors who have symptoms of depression, it can increase their chance of falling by up to 30 percent5 and those living with Alzheimer’s are also at an increased risk.6

Hearing Loss

Seniors with hearing loss are three times more likely to fall than those without hearing loss.7 This is due to less spatial awareness, which makes tripping and falling more likely. If you’ve experienced hearing loss, fall detection may be useful.

History of Falls

For seniors who have fallen before, they are twice as likely to fall again in the future.8 Certain medications, vision impairments, clutter in the home, and improper footwear can all contribute to a history of falling.

Now that we’ve covered our recommendations for automatic fall detection, let’s get into our list of this year’s top medical alert systems with fall detection!

Is Automatic Fall Detection Accurate?

Fall detection sensors are calibrated to account for patterns in drops and falls. Metrics such as speed, impact, angle, distance, and motion detected after a fall are all factored by the fall detection sensor. Based on the information gathered from these metrics, the device determines whether or not a fall occurred. Upon detecting a fall, the system will connect the wearer to a trained operator, who will then determine if emergency medical assistance should be dispatched.

Though fall detection sensors are programmed to avoid triggering due to small motions, the system isn’t always 100 percent accurate. If a false alarm is triggered, you can just communicate with the emergency operator that everything is fine and you do not need assistance. No biggie!

Quick Tip: Want to compare our top picks for medical alert systems with fall detection to other providers? Visit our list of the best medical alert systems in 2021.

On the flip side, since automatic fall detection isn’t perfect, sometimes when the wearer falls the sensor may not detect the fall. This can happen for a variety of reasons such as low batteries, the pendant being worn incorrectly, or simply that the sensor was unable to detect the fall. Due to this margin of error, it’s encouraged that wearers always press their medical alert button when a fall occurs, if possible. This ensures that the emergency operator is notified and help is sent ASAP.

What Does Automatic Fall Detection Cost?

Since automatic fall detection is available as an add-on feature to the medical alert systems we’ve listed above, you’ll want to consider the price of the medical alert subscription as well. If you choose an annual subscription plan, you can expect to pay around $19.95 to $45 per month, depending on your chosen system and provider. To add automatic fall detection, most medical alert system providers add $5-$10 per month to your bill. With that wide of a price range, we’ve found that automatic fall detection is accessible and worth the investment, even if you’re shopping on a budget. We’d definitely recommend fall detection if it works for your wallet.

FAQs

  • How much does fall detection cost?

    Most medical alert system providers charge around $5-$10 extra per month to add automatic fall detection to your monthly subscription.

  • Does fall detection work?

    Yes, fall detection works, but it does not work 100 percent of the time. In the event of a fall, wearers should always press their medical alert button if possible.

  • Who should have automatic fall detection?

    Seniors who have a history of falling, or have precursors that may make them more likely to fall, should consider getting automatic fall detection added to their medical alert system.

  • Does fall detection work in the shower?

    Yes, the majority of fall detection pendants are waterproof and can be worn in the shower. This is ideal since bathrooms can be slippery and bathing can pose a safety hazard for some older adults.

Looking for Help Choosing a Medical Alert System?
We can help! Answer 5 simple questions and we'll make a recommendation for you or your loved one.
Reviewed By

Linda Schlenker

Senior Safety Expert

Linda’s Acclaimed Career in Senior Care Linda Schlenker is a comforting voice for seniors and caregivers across the U.S. For nearly three decades, Linda has helped seniors remain safe in their own homes, while helping them to regain priceless independence and peace… Learn More About Linda Schlenker

Written By

Morgan Redding

Writer and Editor

Morgan has been writing about the senior living industry for the past five years. In addition to over 400 hours of research on topics like medical alert systems, health insurance, and technology for older adults, she also brings her previous experience working… Learn More About Morgan Redding