GreatCall offers medical alert equipment connected to a U.S.-based monitoring service for use at home and on the go. This company exclusively uses cellular connections, and no landline option is available. Most equipment has an unlimited range, and some devices have activity monitoring, fall detection and GPS location functions.
What Is GreatCall?
GreatCall has operated since 2006 and currently has more than 900,000 subscribers. The company headquarters is located in Carlsbad, CA, with a call center in Reno, NV. In late 2015, GreatCall acquired Lively, an emergency response platform. In August 2018, Best Buy acquired GreatCall and began selling these medical alert systems in stores. This service has one of the fastest emergency call response times at approximately 5.3 seconds.
How Does GreatCall Work?
Customers can sign up for GreatCall services online or over the phone. Devices can be shipped directly to a customer's home for a flat $10 fee or purchased in store at Best Buy or other major retailers. A cellular signal from Verizon is necessary for the medical alert system to work. When a user presses a help button, or an automatic fall detection system is activated, this emergency alert system initiates a call to a monitoring center.
The 5Star Urgent Response Service is available on every subscription tier of the GreatCall service. This plan connects users with a U.S.-based monitoring center staffed with responders certified by the International Academies of Emergency Dispatch. These agents can confirm the location of the user and provide assistance by contacting family members or caregivers, calling emergency services or sending roadside assistance.
In addition to 5Star Urgent Response, the mid-range Preferred subscription tier also includes Urgent Care and GreatCall Link services. Urgent Care makes it easy for users to contact a registered nurse or board-certified doctor and obtain medical advice, prescriptions or refills over the phone without an appointment, insurance plan or co-pay. GreatCall Link can send automatic notifications to family members, friends or caregivers who download a free smartphone app.
The top-of-the-line Ultimate subscription package includes 5Star Urgent Response, Urgent Care, GreatCall Link, Fall Detection and Product Replacement services. This tier of service adds fall detection to the Lively Mobile device. Fall detection is built in on the Lively Wearable. Additional services are available to Jitterbug phone users.
What Equipment Does GreatCall Offer?
The Lively Mobile Plus is the most basic medical alert device available through GreatCall. This device features a built-in help button, microphone and speaker and is designed for wear around the neck on a lanyard, on a wristband or clipped to a belt. Users press a button and speak directly into the device to contact the monitoring service. A version with automatic fall detection is also available. The 5Star Urgent Response is built into the Lively Mobile Plus on any level of the GreatCall subscription service. Other services, such as Urgent Care, GreatCall Link and automatic fall detection, may also be available depending on the subscription plan.
The Lively Wearable sells for the same price as the Mobile Plus and functions as an activity tracker that counts steps, presents challenges and enables users to compete with friends. This device pairs with almost any smartphone and converts the phone into a medical alert device. When a user presses a help button on the Wearable, his or her smartphone will call the monitoring center. Fall detection is included with the Lively Wearable. This medical alert system requires users to remain within 150 feet of a connected smartphone to function.
Does GreatCall Charge Installation or Activation Fees?
GreatCall does not charge a built-in installation fee, and this equipment is designed for easy setup and use. There is a $35 one-time activation fee for any of the company's medical alert devices.
How Much Does GreatCall Cost?
When a customer signs up for GreatCall, he or she will need to select a medical alert device and a service plan. The basic medical alert devices offered by this company include the Lively Mobile Plus and Lively Wearable, both of which are priced at $49.99. More expensive flip phone or smartphone options are also available with the medical alert services and additional features. Every device has a one-time $35 activation fee and $10 shipping fee.
GreatCall has three tiers of service with subscription rates ranging from $24.99 to $39.99 per month. Choose any of the following packages based on the monthly price and included features:
The Basic package costs $24.99 a month and includes 5Star Urgent Response service. The Preferred package features 5Star Urgent Response, Urgent Care and GreatCall Link services for $29.99 a month. The Ultimate package includes all of these services as well as Fall Detection and Product Replacement. An equipment replacement plan is available for any device for an additional $3 to $4 per month and has a deductible between $15 and $50, depending on the equipment.
Where Can I Buy GreatCall?
Customers can sign up for the GreatCall medical alert service online or over the phone. Devices can be purchased at Best Buy or other major retailers.
Does GreatCall Require a Contract?
GreatCall is available month-to-month, and no discounts are offered for advance payments. Customers may cancel the service at any time, keep the equipment and receive a prorated refund for the length of the remaining subscription.
The company offers a 30-day trial period and does not accept equipment returns after 30 days. If a customer cancels the service after 30 days, it is not possible to obtain a reimbursement for equipment fees. There is also no need to return the equipment.
Why Choose GreatCall?
GreatCall has the fastest response times of any medical alert service. The company only relies on cellular connections, which are very stable and reliable as long as a strong Verizon signal is available. There are many tiers of service ranging from affordable options to full-featured safety packages. All equipment is covered by a one-year warranty, and replacements for defective equipment are shipped free of charge. Compare GreatCall to other medical alert services and choose the best option for your lifestyle.