We’ve had a number of medical alert system providers inquire lately as to why we have a recommended list of medical alert providers, and what they can do to “make the list”. First let me tell you about “why” we recommend certain providers, and then we’ll tackle the “how”. Let’s start out with why we do it…
Why we recommend medical alert system providers
Having followed this industry for many years, we’ve come to know the reputable companies, and also the ones to avoid. If you take a look back in The Senior List archives, you’ll see a number of resources that we’ve published to help consumers understand what to look for in a quality provider. Our post The Top 10 Questions to Ask Before Buying a Medical Alert System is still one of our most valuable posts for caregivers looking for advice.
If you read through the Top 10 Questions, you’ll see that we don’t like long-term (locked-in) contracts. This is one of the biggest mistakes consumers make in this space. I can’t tell you how many horror stories we’ve heard about people failing to understand the fine print before signing a contract. Don’t fall into this trap!
These are great little devices that allow our friends and family to stay in their homes longer, and guard against any unforeseen emergencies. There are so many providers of medical alert systems on the market, most people don’t know where to turn. When they realize they need a medical alert system, they’re usually in crisis mode, and they just don’t have the time or knowledge to do the right research. We’ve seen this first-hand, and decided a long time ago to attempt to make this process easier for all. (*Note, it’s our intention to provide the same kind of feedback in other areas like walk-in-tubs, hearing aids, Apps, scooters, and more).
The recommendations we make are rooted in experience, our knowledge of the industry, and from direct consumer feedback from sites like ours. We also look for companies that are responsive to us when we reach out to them. We figure if they’re not responsive to a publisher like The Senior List, they’re probably not going to be responsive to you the consumer (if you have an issue to take care of). The companies we recommend on TSL are the same medical alert companies that we recommend to friends and family when we’re asked where to turn. We love matching people up to great providers!
How we recommend medical alert system providers
We have certain criteria that medical alert companies must meet before we even consider recommending them. Here are a few of those criteria:
- Online Reviews: We check online reviews to obtain a sense of their overall service, and performance on a macro level. Having tracked this industry for many years, we’re well aware that nobody’s perfect. Our expectation isn’t that every review is going to be positive… BUT if we see medical alert companies being proactive, and responsive to customer inquiries – that’s a good sign the alert provider cares about their customers (and ultimately their reputation).
- Senior List Community Feedback: If you poke around The Senior List, you’ll see that we have reviewed many of the major medical alert system providers. When we do, we also receive a lot of really great feedback from our readers on product performance, customer service, and overall satisfaction. One medical alert provider recently inquired as to how to be included in our “Senior List Recommended List“. They had been reviewed a number of years ago by Senior List staff. The customer feedback (via comments) wasn’t good at all, and yet nobody from the organization seemed to care whatsoever. We pointed this out to the organization and they are new reviewing how they handle feedback from community members like ours. *Note: We’re also happy to give companies a second chance.
- No Long Term Contracts: If you’re a provider with long-term contracts (and no “out” clauses) you’re not going to be recommended by The Senior List. There are too many quality providers out there that allow consumers to exit their agreements when their loved one no longer requires the service.
- Easy to Work With: The companies we recommend are typically very responsive if we reach out with questions or concerns. Occasionally we’ll get involved on our reader’s behalf to try to rectify customer service issues if/when they come up. Some companies are great to work with, some are not. We won’t recommend companies that aren’t responsive to us (or consumers).
- Quality Products: Most of the medical alert systems on the market are adequate, but some are better than others (form factors, household reach, intuitive set-up, etc.) Simply put, we try to avoid crappy hardware
Those are just a few of the criteria that we use when we’re recommending medical alert system providers. To our community supporters, we thank you for all of the great feedback you’ve given us over the years. Your voice gives us the opportunity to be influential in this growing space. To the medical alert system providers that we recommend – Please continue your great customer focus, and we’ll continue to sing your praises.
If you’re a provider that’s not on the list (and think you should be) drop us a line. We’re happy when consumers are happy! If you’re looking for a handy tool to help you narrow down your medical alert choices, see our medical alert buyers guide – It will walk you through the various choices available today.