According to the U.S. Census Bureau, our senior population is the fastest growing demographic in our society today. With the first of the Baby Boomers entering the ranks of seniors, the population of people 65 years and older is projected to grow faster than the total population in every state. And while the senior population is growing, an overwhelming percentage live independently in their own residences versus an institutional setting like an assisted living facility or nursing home.

As the senior population ages, the degree of assistance needed to remain independent increases. This is primarily due to the overall decline in health and progression of chronic illness. As we age, the chance we will become victims of a critical health episode dramatically increases. Critical episodes like heart attacks, strokes and hip fractures due to falls increase exponentially as each year passes. Statistics tell us there is a 43% chance that a fall will occur for a senior between the ages of 75 and 84. For every hour a senior lies on the floor, there is likely one week of rehabilitation.

There is inexpensive insurance available for situations like this, bringing a peace of mind to people whose loved ones need therapy after a fall. Based on the fall statistics, it is not much a matter of “if” but a matter of “when” a senior will likely have a need for a PERS system.

How exactly does PERS help?

A PERS service is a safety and medical alert system that allows an individual to signal for help from a wireless alarm pendant. These systems typically alert a customer care center operator, who will dispatch the appropriate help. In the event of an injury or emergency, the local 911 Emergency Response Team will be dispatched. Otherwise, a family member, neighbor, friend or caregiver can be notified for assistance. As such, the seniors never have to feel as though they are alone.

Here are some things to look for in a PERS provider:

  • Local ownership
  • Demonstrated high service model
  • Commitment to install within 24 hours
  • After hours and weekend servicing
  • No cost/no obligation in-residence demonstration
  • No risk trial
  • No long-term contract
  • Available advanced feature options
  • Operator assisted check-in services
  • A long track record of serving the community

Here are some features to consider:

  • Small, lightweight, wireless and waterproof alarm button
  • Live and personal operator voice assistance
  • Convertible button (work around the neck or wrist)
  • “Smart Pendant” to alert customer care center if battery is running low
  • Backup battery on console
  • Significant audio range

Some common concerns of family members

Family members we’ve talked to over the years have expressed their need for peace of mind that their loved one is safe. We’ve heard stories about seniors falling but didn’t have their alarm button on or didn’t press the alarm because they didn’t want to bother anyone. Some were simply afraid they would be put into institutional living after having fallen. In the recent years, another concern has become more and more prevalent –  more seniors are giving up their landline in favor of a cell phone, which eliminates the necessary connection between the senior and the PERS Customer Care Center in most systems. With a little care in selecting the right system, these concerns can be resolved.

With a little investigation, you will be happy with your PERS choice for your loved one. For more information, call (262) 780-0848.

Source: Mike Ostrenga of Safe Living Technologies