July 13th, 2005

Heritage Medical Equipment and Supplies is now offering Lifeline—an easy-to-use personal response service that helps ensure that older adults living at home get quick help whenever it is needed.

“Lifeline really provides users with peace of mind and a stronger sense of well-being knowing that help is just a press of a button away,” said Lelia Wilkerson, manager, Heritage Medical Equipment and Supplies. “Lifeline is one of the original personal response systems, and we have a great deal of confidence in the service that they provide.”

The Lifeline response device is worn as a pendant or wristband. When help is needed, the person wearing the pendant simply presses the waterproof help button. Within seconds, a certified Lifeline monitor with complete access to the user’s medical profile responds, assesses the situation and summons appropriate help, whether it is a neighbor, relative or ambulance. The monitor also will follow up to make sure help arrived.

Lifeline is not just for medical emergencies. The service also allows users to answer the telephone without having to rush to grab a handset and risk falling. Other Lifeline features, which are available for an additional fee, include:

• Lifeline CareAlert--In a medical emergency, Lifeline CareAlert will send a fax notification to a patient’s physician, home-health nurse or designated family member to inform them of the patient’s condition and progress.
• Lifeline Healthcare Directives--This feature provides emergency room staff instant access to a patient’s health-care wishes, including life support and organ donation, as in a living will or other forms of an advance directive. When a patient is transported to a hospital, these documents, stored centrally at Lifeline, are immediately faxed to the hospital. This helps ensure that health-care wishes are communicated to the right people at the right time.
• Lifeline Inactivity Alarm Service--This service prompts the Lifeline Monitoring Center to contact a user if he or she cannot check in with Lifeline on a daily basis.
• Lifeline with Reminders--Up to six personalized reminder messages can be programed to play daily, weekly or only once. This feature is often used to help users remember to take medications, keep track of medical appointments and social engagements, or follow a physician’s guidelines for diet and exercise.

Lifeline costs a little more than a dollar a day, and users are not required to buy any equipment or make a long-term commitment. Those interested in the system should call Heritage Medical Equipment and Supplies at (319) 768-4300.