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Philips Lifeline Medical Alert System Review: Is It For You?

Philips Lifeline has been providing medical alert services since 1974 and is one of the most popular providers of such services in North America. Offering pendants, bracelets and other devices with a wide variety of features, Philips Lifeline allows customers to create their own response plans. To learn more about the company's services and how customers like the product, read on.

senior being assisted with lifeline device

Signs the Elderly Should Use a Medical Alert System

The most common reason for the elderly to decide a medical alert system is necessary is because they have had a fall. A medical alert system around the neck or on the wrist ensures the wearer has access to help if he or she falls again. It is also a good idea to have a medical alert system if the wearer takes medication that includes dizziness as a side effect. Finally, an alert system can simply provide peace of mind for the wearer and his or her loved ones who might not be able to be there for them at all times.

Overall Rating of Philips Lifeline Medical Alert System

Overall, the Philips Lifeline Medical Alert System is an excellent choice for people on a monthly budget, but the initial setup is a bit pricey. The system itself works great and has alerted responders to more than 200,000 falls. Despite the excellent product, customer service seems to be hit or miss when it comes to pricing, canceling service or asking questions. Still, if you need something affordable, this system gets the job done.

How Does It Work?

Medical alert systems all basically work the same way in that they alert the company's call center when the wearer presses the button. A call center representative then takes the appropriate action.

Philips Lifeline Medical Alert System also uses patented technology that can detect when somebody has fallen but not pressed the button. When contacted, a Philips representative follows the directions given when the medical alert system was purchased and set up. This could mean he or she contacts a neighbor, a family member, a friend or emergency services. Devices are waterproof, which is especially important since many falls happen in the shower or on slippery bathroom surfaces.


The Philips Lifeline Medical Alert System is a small and stylish device. It works 24 hours a day, seven days a week to ensure the wearer is safe. Since the device itself alerts the fully-staffed Philips call center, it works even if the wearer does not have access to a landline phone. The help button never needs charging, so the wearer can rest easy knowing that it will always be functional.

People who use the Philips Lifeline Medical Alert System create a personalized profile that includes contact information for neighbors, friends, family or other specified individuals. It also includes local emergency information as well as preferences as to how the wearer wants the company to handle emergencies.

It goes without saying that the device does more than protect against falls. Users can press the button for other emergencies, such as fires, as well as if they accidentally lock themselves out of the house.

Benefits of Philips Lifeline Medical Alert System

happy senior

A Philips Lifeline Medical Alert System provides benefits for both the wearer and his or her family. For the wearer, a medical alert system allows someone to remain independent, living in his or her own home, cooking meals and enjoying the space he or she has grown accustomed to without worry that a medical emergency will occur without anybody noticing. Since the system can alert of falls even if the wearer doesn't press the button, it provides further peace of mind for the wearer and family members alike. However, note that the system cannot alert 100 percent of falls, so the wearer should still press the button if possible.

Pros and Cons of the Philips Lifeline Medical Alert System

Like any product, the Philips Lifeline Medical Alert System has several advantages and disadvantages. On the plus side, the system works with a long-range button, which means it works throughout an entire property in most cases, even if the wearer is far from the signaling device. The system also has advanced options that most other medical alert systems don't provide, and Philips conducts weekly tests to ensure everything is working properly. In addition, the company does not require long-term contracts, and it does provide professional installation if needed.

Of course there are several disadvantages as well, mostly to do with the cost of the system. Philips charges more for the initial purchase than other medical alert companies do, and the monthly price is higher than most others as well. Philips also charges an activation fee where most other companies do not. Other than the costs associated with the system, other disadvantages include the equipment not being UL listed and the discontinuation of the activity monitoring options.

Customer Reviews For Philips Lifeline 

While most people are happy with the service itself, some people do say the button is too easy to press when sleeping.

The biggest complaint regards bill payment. Many people complain that they were sent to collections because they hadn't paid the bill, but they thought the payment was coming from a credit card. These reviews state that they received no paper bills, phone calls or final warnings before being sent to collections. Of those who cancelled because of this issue, several found they were being charged twice what they were quoted.

seniors enjoying drink

Philips Lifeline Medical Alert System vs. Life Alert

When it comes to the equipment itself, Life Alert has the upper hand. Its medical alert equipment works in an 800-foot radius while Philips Lifeline depends on the home and may have as small as a 400-foot radius. Life Alert equipment has batteries that last as long as a decade, but Philips only lasts about 18 months. Power loss means three days of battery backup for Life Alert and only a little more than a day for Philips. People who sign up for Life Alert get both a pendant and a bracelet, but Philips customers must choose between the two. Only Life Alert has UL-certified equipment.

However, Philips Lifeline has the upper hand in terms of pricing. Life Alert does offer one month free if you pay annually, though. Philips allows you to cancel your services and requires no contract, but Life Alert only allows contract cancellation with proof that your loved one requires 24-hour care or has passed away. Neither offers a senior discount, but Philips provides a 30 percent discount for military.

elderly wearing lifeline bracelet

Philips Lifeline Medical Alert Bracelets for Women

Medical alert bracelets are not one size fits all. Philips understands that people want to remain fashionable even as they age, which is why the company provides medical alert systems in a variety of options. From bracelets to sport watches, wearers can choose something that best fits their needs and style. One of the most popular options are the medical alert bracelets for women. Sleek and stylish, these bracelets do everything the pendant does to ensure the wearer is safe, but their neutral coloring and modern design ensure they look good with both casual and formal outfits. Engravings and other customizations are available as well so that every customer gets exactly what she envisioned.

Final Thoughts On Philips Lifeline Medical Alert System

A high-quality device with a high rescue success rate and affordable price, the Philips Lifeline Medical Alert system is a great choice for anyone who wants to remain independent while maintaining safety. Do you have experience with the system? Leave your own reviews or questions in the comments below.

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