1. Auto-dial systems:
To set up an auto-dial system, you simply plug the base station unit into the wall and plug the phone line into it. It’s just like plugging in an answering machine. You want to be sure to pick a place that meets these criteria:
- It’s in a central location where the speakerphone can pick up your elderly parent’s voice
- The phone jack you’re using is well-wired and noise free
- The power cord won’t make a tripping hazard
- The power cord won’t fall out of the outlet
Then you program the numbers you want the unit to dial. Just follow the instructions for the unit you purchased.
Make sure that the people whose numbers you put into the system know that you’re doing this.
Once the base station is set up, get the pendant set up by choosing how the person wants to wear it, and go over how they will include it in their daily routine. For example, it won’t do them any good if it’s on their bedside table when they fall in the shower in the morning! Education is the most important thing.
And be sure to do a test activation of the system. Each system works slightly differently, so you’ll want to read the instructions carefully so you can tell people what to expect. Then activate the system and go through a role-play scenario. Go through one basic scenario and then try to make up a really tough one where the person on the other end will have to call a neighbor, or the Emergency Medical Services.
2. Monitored systems:
Some monitored systems include installation as part of their service. In this case, a technician will come to your house to plug in the base unit. They’ll teach you how to press the panic button to summon help.
Some monitored systems require you to do your own setup. In this case it’s just like the auto-dialer example above.
One additional step with a monitored solution is to give the medical alert monitoring facility a rundown of your health conditions. This is something you probably want to do in consultation with your doctor.
By giving the monitoring center this information, they can help you better if there’s an emergency.
Again, please be sure to test the system. Each monitoring service will have different procedures for this.