Question: I live alone in a home that I have owned for 60 years. My spouse recently passed away and my adult children live out of state. My children check-in on me daily via phone and I have neighbors who help with chores that I can no longer do. I have a cat who keeps me company and I enjoy reading during my free time. Recently, I had my second fall in the bathroom after tripping over my cat’s litter box and laid on the floor for 4 hours until I had the strength to crawl to the living room phone. My children do not think I should live alone but I do not want to move out of my home. I recently saw the “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up” commercial and am wondering if you can tell me more about what they showed on TV.
Answer: Personal Emergency Response Systems, otherwise known as lifeline devices, are pendants that are worn around the neck or wrist and used to call for help. There are several companies that provide lifeline service, some of them offering only in-home service coverage, while others offer coverage whether you are in your home or out in the community. By the push of a button, a live operator will answer your call and assist you with connecting to 9-1-1. The cost for lifeline devices varies based on the company and the type of purchased service and a monthly contract is often required.
Once service is set up, the device is active and will assist you with calling for help as long as you are wearing it or have it within reach to push the button.
Living independently is the goal of many and cannot happen unless services are utilized where assistance in daily living is needed. Many people find that the simple intervention of wearing a lifeline device makes them feel more comfortable living on their own and their family members find peace in knowing that they have access to help 24/7.
If you are interested in learning more about the local lifeline providers, please contact ADRC at