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With a wide range of technology, Medical Guardian offers protection for nearly any kind of user, from active adults to people who spend most of their time at home. In 2024, the company revamped its lineup of medical alert systems and now offers new home and mobile systems, as well as a medical alert watch.
Overall, these new systems provide the same reliable protection we’ve seen from Medical Guardian throughout the years. Fall detection is accurate, emergency response times are quick, and the equipment is durable. New to the devices are some minor improvements, including streamlined device design and more advanced caregiver tracking –– particularly with regard to the mobile systems. That said, Medical Guardian’s quality comes at a slight premium, costing anywhere from $30 to $45 per month, not including extra features like fall detection.
In this Medical Guardian review, we’ll take a closer look at Medical Guardian’s home system, the MGHome Cellular. We’ll walk through the process of setting up the system, we’ll recount our experience testing the device, and we’ll examine how it compares to medical alert systems from other companies.
Pro Tip: While Medical Guardian’s response times are fast, the company is far from the most affordable. To find medical alert systems from $20 per month, read our rundown of this year’s best medical alert systems.
Medical Guardian Video Review
If you prefer watching instead of reading, check out our updated Medical Guardian video review, in which our Managing Editor, Ryan Molloy, tests out the MGHome Cellular.
Medical Guardian Pros and Cons
Medical Guardian Pros
Lightning-fast emergency response times: In our test calls, Medical Guardian urgent response agents answered us in an average of 8 seconds. That’s faster than any other system we’ve tested.
Equipment for all needs: Boasting five medical alert systems — including in-home, mobile, and even a smartwatch — Medical Guardian can suit all types of people.
Wide detection range: Medical Guardian’s MG Home Cellular system has one of the largest detection ranges on the market. The wearable help button can be 1,400 feet away from the base station and still communicate an emergency. This is more than adequate for most homes.
Bracelet and pendant included: Instead of offering only a medical alert bracelet or a pendant, Medical Guardian’s home systems include a help button with both bracelet and pendant attachments.
Power outage backup: Medical Guardian base units feature a 32-hour backup battery, which is a great fail-safe in an emergency during a storm or other power issue.
Medical Guardian Cons
Higher costs: Medical Guardian’s systems start at $29.95 per month for the landline home system and $38 for the cellular home system. Compare this to MobileHelp prices, which start at $19.95 per month for a home cellular system.
Equipment charges: In addition to higher monthly costs, Medical Guardian also required us to pay a one-time equipment fee of $150 for our MGHome Cellular. Since the equipment is useless without your monthly subscription, this charge felt a bit unwarranted.
Medical Guardian has five distinct medical alert systems, each geared toward different customer types. While some systems are designed for use in the home, others are made for on-the-go use. Regardless of the system you choose, you’ll still be connected to Medical Guardian’s monitoring center, where a trained agent will answer your call and coordinate the proper response — whether that’s contacting EMS or a neighbor for a wellness check.
Every system is compatible with the MyGuardian caregiver portal, and all of the systems (save for the MGMove) are compatible with fall detection.
At $29.95 per month, the Classic Guardian is Medical Guardian’s most affordable and basic medical alert system. Using an existing landline connection, this device connects a user to Medical Guardian’s monitoring center. Plus, it has a connectivity range of 1,300 feet, allowing the user to connect to help from just about anywhere in the home. It also has a backup battery, allowing it to function in the event of a power outage.
The MGHome Cellular functions exactly like the Classic Guardian; however, instead of using an existing landline, it runs on AT&T’s cellular network, which is likely why it costs $37.95 per month. In our tests, the speakerphone on this system was especially loud, allowing us to communicate with response agents from multiple rooms away from the system’s base unit.
Medical Guardian’s newest alert, the MGMini, is the company’s most affordable all-in-one mobile solution. Designed with discretion in mind, the Mini Guardian is half the width of traditional devices. It’s only slightly taller than a matchbox and less than half the weight of one, coming in at a mere 1.3 ounces. Despite its small stature, this sleek cellular system boasts a five-day rechargeable battery life, water resistance, three color choices, two-way talk, and built-in GPS and Wi-Fi tracking that can pinpoint your exact location during an emergency.
Even smaller than the MGMini, the MGMini Lite offers similar features, with a built-in GPS, speakerphone, and fall detection system. The primary difference is the wristband, which allows it to be worn as a bracelet as opposed to a pendant.
The MGMove smartwatch is a medical alert watch with many of the same features other smartwatches have, such as SMS text messaging, schedules, and weather forecasts — but it has the added bonus of a medical alert system. This device also features GPS tracking and Wi-Fi connectivity.
Previously Sold Systems
Medical Guardian has a long history of selling high-quality medical alert systems, including the Mobile 2.0 and Active Guardian systems. While Medical Guardian no longer sells these devices, they can still be purchased at retailers like Walmart and Best Buy.
Medical Guardian used to offer the Mobile 2.0 system; however, this model has been discontinued as of October 2023.
Testing My Medical Guardian System
To purchase a Medical Guardian system, we highly recommend visiting their website. While their devices can be found at retailers like Walmart and Amazon, Medical Guardian’s website gives you access to their customer support. In our experience, Medical Guardian’s customer support team went to great lengths to help us decide which system would be right for us, inquiring about the user’s activity levels, their home’s layout, and the user’s technological proficiency.
While we’ve tested out every system from Medical Guardian, for the purposes of this review, we’re going to focus on the MGHome Cellular. This in-home medical alert system will give you a good idea of how all of Medical Guardian’s systems work. To read reviews of Medical Guardian’s other systems, click the links below:
Upon receiving our MGHome Cellular, we removed it from the box and found the following pieces of equipment:
1 base unit
1 power cable
1 help button
1 bracelet attachment
1 pendant attachment
1 instruction manual
One thing that struck us immediately with the MGHome Cellular was the sleekness of its base unit. While the base units of other systems often look clunky and clinical, this one was comparably attractive. Made of smooth, rounded white plastic, this system’s base unit looked more like a smart speaker than a medical alert system. Its glowing pink help button only added to the appeal.
Something else we appreciated with this system was that Medical Guardian included both pendant and wristband attachments for the help button. While other medical alert companies require a person to choose either a bracelet or pendant help button, Medical Guardian includes both options for no extra cost.
The setup process for the MGHome Cellular was straightforward and intuitive. The first step was to plug the base unit into a wall outlet. Once we did this, we waited a few seconds, and the base unit then announced, “Device ready.” In a matter of seconds, our system was ready to test.
With the MGHome Cellular, we could make an emergency call in one of two ways. We could either press and hold the dedicated button on the base unit, or we could press and hold the wearable help button.
Unlike calling 911, placing an emergency call with the MGHome Cellular connects you to a professional monitoring center. These monitoring agents have a list of emergency contacts and, if relevant, a list of medical conditions. This allows them to more effectively help the user.
For our first test call, we pressed the button on the base unit. Once we held the button for three seconds, the device stated, “Initiating help.” After twelve seconds passed, we were connected with a monitoring agent, and we informed them that we were making a test call. The agent then asked for us to confirm our name and address, and he informed us that the device was working properly.
For our next test call, we used the wearable help button, and we initiated this call from the kitchen. (For reference, the base unit was located in our living room.) We did this to test the power of the system’s speaker and microphone. This is very important for home medical alert systems, as wearable help buttons don’t have their own speakerphones, meaning calls are conducted through the speaker and microphone of the base unit.
As with our first test call, operators picked up our second test call in an impressive eight seconds. We were also pleased that the speaker on the base unit was loud enough to hear from a different room, 40 feet away from where we initiated the call. The base unit’s microphone also proved powerful enough to capture our voice, and we were able to accurately relay to the response agent that we were, once again, simply testing our system.
Across all of our test calls, we found that the MGHome Cellular connected us with help in an average of eight seconds. That’s faster than any other system we’ve tested, and we feel more than assured that this Medical Guardian system will protect our loved ones in the event of an emergency.
For comparison, systems from Bay Alarm Medical answered our test calls in an average of 16 seconds. Systems from Life Alert answered our calls in an average of 120 seconds. (Yes, you read that correctly.)
Available on both smartphones and computers, the MyGuardian App allowed me to keep track of monthly billing and emergency contacts. It also allowed me to track the system’s battery life and signal strength. With these metrics, you can ensure your loved one’s device is working from afar.
For example, using this platform, I was able to add contacts who would receive notifications whenever I placed an emergency call with my system.
Additionally, if you have one of Medical Guardian’s mobile systems, you can keep tabs on a system’s location and even step counts.
Medical Guardian Pricing
The MGHome Cellular system costs $37.95 per month, which is a bit higher than average for an in-home system. Additionally, I had to pay a one-time equipment charge of $149.95. These charges are a bit higher than average for home medical alert systems.
With so many systems and add-ons, the price of your Medical Guardian system will likely vary. To learn more about Medical Guardian’s many devices and their prices, take a look at our Medical Guardian costs page.
Medical Guardian vs. Bay Alarm Medical
In terms of medical alert companies, both Medical Guardian and Bay Alarm Medical are among our favorites. Both providers offer a variety of systems that can be used both in the home and on the go; however, in our tests, we found two key differences.
With Medical Guardian, we found that monitoring agents answered our calls in an average of eight seconds, while Bay Alarm Medical agents answered in an average of 16 seconds. While both of these response times are better than average, Medical Guardian consistently answered our emergency calls more quickly.
The other primary difference is the price. Medical Guardian systems start at $29.95 per month, while Bay Alarm Medical systems cost $24.95 per month. Across the board, we found that Bay Alarm Medical systems were roughly $5 cheaper per month.
There’s a reason I chose Medical Guardian as one of the best medical alert systems. The company offers many unique systems for every lifestyle, from homebound users to older adults who travel and go outside every day. Medical Guardian is the peak of what a medical alert system can be. The Classic Guardian is a simple, affordable system that does the basics flawlessly. I was blown away by its 1,400 foot range, as well as its easy setup and clear two-way communication.
I’d recommend Medical Guardian if you want:
An affordable landline system: Starting at $29.95 per month, the Classic Guardian is a well-built, reliable system that communicates with professional monitoring via an existing landline connection.
An all-in-one mobile system: Unlike most mobile medical alert systems, which require additional buttons for fall detection, the MGMini has everything in one compact device so you won’t have to lug around extra help buttons. It’s one of my favorite cellular medical alerts.
Reliable monitoring: Medical Guardian’s monitoring centers are UL-listed and have received a five-diamond score from The Monitoring Association (TMA). Its systems come with an impressive pedigree, and it was apparent in each of my test calls that I was dealing with a team of professionals.
Additional buttons: From additional help buttons to voice-activated medical alerts, Medical Guardian offers a full range of accessories so you can tailor your system to your specific needs.
Month-to-month contracts: While Medical Guardian offers discounts for annual subscriptions, they only require monthly commitments. Considering other providers like Life Alert require three-year service agreements, this is definitely a benefit. To learn more about Life Alert, read my Life Alert review and this guide to Life Alert costs.
I wouldn’t recommend Medical Guardian if you want:
Detailed caregiver tracking: Medical Guardian offers its app only on mobile systems. If you want an in-home system that can track your activity and notify your caregiver network of emergency calls, I’d recommend reading my Aloe Care Health review.
No monthly fees: Medical Guardian costs a minimum of $29.95 per month. While this is about average for in-home medical alerts, some medical alerts require no monthly charge. To learn more, read our guide to medical alerts with no monthly fee.
Medical Guardian Medical Alert System Frequently Asked Questions
Medical Guardian is one of our top-rated Medical Alert providers. They offer durable equipment, quick response times, and simple devices. Returning your system is as easy as calling to cancel your service and shipping back your equipment.
No. All systems can operate without Wi-Fi. Instead, Medical Guardian’s emergency personnel are able to detect Wi-Fi hot spots around you to confirm your location in case of an emergency.
Amie has been writing about senior care products and services for the last decade. She is particularly passionate about new technologies that help improve the quality of life for seniors and their families. Seeing her parents and grandparents age made Amie ask herself, “Would this be good enough for my loved ones?” In her spare time, Amie enjoys outdoor adventures and spontaneous road trips. Learn more about Amie here