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Best GPS Medical Alert Systems of 2021

Our experts tested and researched 15 cellular medical alert devices and narrowed the list to their top 4 recommendations.

Best Overall
Call for best price:
855-919-4522
Most Affordable
Call for best price:
844-946-1712
Best Cell Phone
Call for best price:
(866) 461-7793
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How We Picked the Best GPS Medical Alert Systems

We evaluated over 15 medical alert providers to find the best GPS medical alert systems for older adults. Our research, hands-on testing, and discussions with customer service reps helped us narrow down to a list of the top five best systems. Some of the most important things we considered were reliability, emergency support, price, wearability, and value for seniors. To make the cut, every provider on the list had to meet the following standards:

  1. Nationwide coverage: GPS medical alert systems are designed to pinpoint the user’s location so help can be sent straight to them. Because these systems are used on the go, it’s essential that your GPS system has coverage nationwide. That’s why all of the alert systems on our list rely on the nation’s most reliable cellular providers, like AT&T and Verizon.
  2. No contracts: We believe seniors deserve flexibility with their purchases. All of the providers on our list offer month-to-month subscriptions, so you’ll never be locked into a long-term contract or have to pay early termination fees.
  3. On-the-go offerings: The whole point of a GPS alert system is to be able to use it out and about away from home. Every provider in our top five offers at least two on-the-go medical alert systems to give you the best protection no matter where you are.
  4. Affordable packages: Staying protected as you age shouldn’t put a dent in your wallet, which is why all of our top providers offer a variety of budget-friendly and premium options.
  5. Senior-friendly design: High-tech or low-tech, the systems on our list provide simple features that are easy and intuitive to use.

Is a GPS Medical Alert System Right for Me?

Independence has a positive impact on the quality of life of seniors.1 This includes the freedom to visit family and friends, enjoy outdoor recreation, and travel. AARP reports that in 2019 seniors were planning an average of 4-5 trips within the year, with 94 percent of seniors taking at least one trip.2 As seniors travel, it’s important that they stay protected, no matter where they are. That’s why a GPS medical alert system that can track your exact location and send help is so useful.

If you’re caring for an aging loved one who is experiencing cognitive decline due to Alzheimer’s or memory loss, a medical alert system with GPS can provide safety for your loved one and much-needed peace of mind for you. Dementia is known to be accompanied by behaviors such as wandering, disorientation, getting lost, or going missing.3 If your loved one wanders, you can locate them quickly and get them home safely with a GPS system.

How do I Use a GPS Medical Alert System?

If you’ve decided that a medical alert system with GPS is right for you or a loved one, you might be wondering how exactly it works, and if it will fit into your lifestyle. The good news is it’s simple! There are just a few quick steps:

  1. Always make sure that your device is charged using the provided charging equipment.
  2. Remember to take your device with you when you leave the house. Depending on the type of device you have, it can either be worn around your neck or placed in a pocket or bag.
  3. In the event of an emergency simply press the call button on your device and you will be connected with your programmed emergency contacts.
  4. The emergency response personnel will be able to locate you using the GPS signal that your device emits, allowing for necessary aid to reach you as soon as possible.

What are the Different Types of GPS Medical Alert Systems?

You’ll have a few different options for medical alert systems with GPS, so you can find a system that best fits your needs. We’ve outlined all the details below!

  • All-in-one GPS devices come with a wearable mobile unit. The unit features a built-in speaker and microphone, so you can easily call for help and communicate with the operator. These systems work in any location with cellular coverage and can easily be worn as a necklace or watch on the go. GPS technology allows family and emergency responders to track and locate the device quickly. We’d recommend all-in-one devices for those who don’t want a system with multiple pieces of equipment. Keep in mind that sometimes these systems can be a little bulky.
  • Two-piece GPS devices are similar to all-in-one devices but you’ll need to carry two pieces of equipment with you instead of one. So, you’ll want to make sure you grab both when you head out the door. Typically, two-piece systems come with a small, portable base station and a wearable help button. The two-way speaker is built into the base station, so your help pendant can be much smaller. Once you press the help button, you’ll then use the base unit to talk to the operator. Two-piece systems are best for those who want a smaller, discreet help button, or those who want a base station that can be thrown in a purse, pocket, or attached to a belt clip.
  • Hybrid GPS systems come with two separate systems: an in-home base station and a two-piece or all-in-one GPS device. Both devices feature a microphone and help button to connect to the monitoring center. The in-home base unit provides monitoring in the home, while the GPS device will protect you on the go. Hybrid systems are best for two users, or someone who wants both a traditional in-home unit and an on-the-go system. Hybrid systems are typically cheaper than purchasing an in-home and mobile unit separately, so they’re also a great way to save.

Comparing At-Home Medical Alert Systems to GPS Medical Alert Systems

So, what’s the difference between an at-home and GPS medical alert system? Standard at-home medical alert systems require the user to be, you guessed it, at home to be protected. They typically include a base that is connected to an outlet and/or landline phone jack, along with a wearable help button. The subscriber can use either the help button on the base unit or their pendant to call for help during an emergency. This system is best for individuals who rarely leave their homes since they can’t be used on the go. At-home systems are also great for those who live in rural areas or locations with poor cellular service, as some models can run completely through a landline.

Medical alert systems with GPS typically include a portable device that uses a cellular connection instead of a landline. These devices can be used inside or outside the home. We recommend them for older adults who leave the home often to visit friends and family or enjoy outdoor activities. They’re also a good fit for older adults who experience symptoms of dementia like wandering, to provide tracking if they get lost or go missing. As mentioned above, some of the best medical alert systems are considered hybrid, and they bundle the at-home unit and GPS device, providing the best of both worlds.

Frequently Asked Questions About GPS Medical Alert Systems

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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

Jeff Hoyt

Editor in Chief

Since graduating from Harvard with an honors degree in Statistics, Jeff has been creating content in print, online, and on television. Much of his work has been dedicated to informing seniors on how to live better lives. As Editor-in-Chief of the personal… Learn More About Jeff Hoyt

Citations
  1. Ceon. (2016). The influence of activeness and independence on the quality of life of senior citizens.

  2. AARP. (2018). 2019 Boomer Travel Trends.

  3. Southern Gerontological Society. (2020). Journal of Applied Gerontology.

  4. Pew Research Center. (2019). Mobile Fact Sheet.