Medical Guardian Review

Medical Guardian is a provider of personal medical alert systems, alert monitoring and dispatch of emergency services with alert systems suitable for use both in and outside of the home. Medical Guardian, LLC has been in business for over a decade and is a United States-based company with headquarters in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. An entirely U.S.-based monitoring facility provides safety with no calls outsourced to other countries.

As we age, our needs change. The Institute on Aging reports that as of 2010, the number of people living to 85 and beyond was the fastest growing group of older Americans. In 2050 there are expected to be 19 million people at least 85 years old in the United States, a full five percent of the population. Nearly one-third of older Americans live alone, and some estimates say over 53 percent of these people have physical limitations that lead to a need for a way to call for help quickly in the case of an accident.

Bone fractures due to aging alone account for two million incidences a year. Even among those not living alone, the risk of becoming lost or disoriented for those facing dementia, Sundowner’s, and Alzheimer’s is troubling. A personal medical alert system can be a lifeline in these situations.

Medical Guardian equipment includes home-based emergency alert units and cellular-based units that are not dependent on a base station for service. Along with providing 24/7 monitoring, operators are trained to help in both emergency and non-emergency situations where a call to another family member or friend is more appropriate than dispatching the fire department or paramedics. For tips on what to look for in a medical alert system check out our medical alert systems buyers guide.

Pros
  • Provides 24/7 United States-based monitoring
  • Offers alert systems for both home and travel
  • Offers GPS enabled alert devices
Cons
  • Medicare does not cover service cost

Medical Guardian Products and Prices

Medical Guardian offers three units with a home base and two travel models. All are priced based on their monthly monitoring rather than being a flat fee up front for equipment plus monitoring, and there are discounts for quarterly and annual payments. Each of the home base units works by having a central base station with an emergency button plugged into the home electrical system using a UL certified bracket that prevents the system from being unplugged. Each of these systems comes with at least one wearable emergency button.

Medical Guardian Screenshot

Medical Guardian Products

While optional, Medical Guardian will also include a lockbox for the front door at no additional charge with an annual subscription of any Guardian model. The lockbox is useful for storing a house key, so EMTs or police do not have to break down a locked door to get to the person requiring attention. Other paid options are wall-mounted buttons and a pendant with fall detection.

  • The Classic Guardian base unit starts at $29.95 monthly. Fall detection monitoring is available with a specially equipped pendant for an additional $10 a month and is another layer of security, but keep in mind the fall detection service is not yet a perfected feature from any emergency response company. The customer should use the button on the pendant or wristband if they fall.

  • The Home Guardian base unit starts at $34.95 monthly. As with the Classic Guardian, fall detection monitoring is available for an additional $10 monthly and requires a pendant. Customers can choose between a neck pendant or a wristband in white or black. An optional wall-mounted button is available on this model and higher models discussed below.

  • The Family Guardian base unit system starts at $79.95 a month. Three safety sensors installed in the home allow family members to receive notifications via email or mobile app when their loved one presses the emergency button or is not going about their daily routine. A door monitor is used to send notifications when the senior leaves the home. This feature is especially helpful for loved ones with dementia or confusion.

  • The Mobile Guardian is one of the two mobile alert systems offered by Medical Guardian that are not dependent on the base station for service. Plans start at $39.95 a month. The Mobile Guardian is a small emergency device that can be worn in a belt pouch, placed in a purse, or with the customer’s choice of a neck pendant or wristband in black or white. The wearable button has a 350-foot limited range from the primary alert device. Available extras include a wall button and car charger.

  • The Active Guardian is the second mobile alert system by Medical Guardian and comes with the most features. Service plans start at $49.95. Like the Mobile Guardian, this unit is not base-dependent although it does have a charging station. A lanyard worn around the neck provides two-way communication with the Medical Guardian monitoring center with fall detection built in, although fall detection costs an additional $10 per month.

  • Freedom Guardian is well-designed watch to for those who are active and on the go. It has a touch-screen with large icons and features advanced location tracking, reminders and alerts, analog watch face, audible features, color options and more. It pairs with the Freedom Guardian mobile app which is available on Google Play and the Apple Store. Freedom Guardian starts at $44.95 per month with a one-time equipment cost of $99.

Medical Guardian Warranty and Return Policy

Medical Guardian has no contract and you can cancel service at any time. If you choose to cancel service, simply return the equipment and you will receive a prorated refund based on the day the device was returned to Medical Guardian.

Medical Guardian product features

Medical Guardian alert systems come with varying features. Features depend on which package you purchase and whether it’s a home or travel package. This chart compares Mobile Guardian’s different medical alert packages and their features.

Medical Guardian consumer reviews

Customer reviews through the Better Business Bureau (BBB), where Medical Guardian has an A+ rating, highly praise the monitoring service and response to emergencies when the unit is activated. A few negative reviews deal with product malfunctions along with complaints about billing issues. The majority of these seem to be from family members of seniors who were sent units but never used them. In some cases, the family did not notice their loved one was not using the alarm devices until over a year had passed. The company has addressed most complaints.

Medical Guardian received mostly five-star reviews from verified customers on ConsumerAffairs and responded to complaints to resolve any issues.

Medical Guardian Screenshot

Screenshot: Medical Guardian Home Page

Medical Guardian Q&A

  • What is the point of having a medical alert device that works with WiFi if the device has GPS?
    GPS-enabled medical alerts are necessary for active seniors who frequently leave their homes. GPS lets monitoring centers find you no matter where your location is. The Active Guardian model is also WiFi-enabled to make pinpointing someone’s location even more specific by using the nearest WiFi hotspots in your current area. These hotspots are plentiful in most locations around the United States.

    There are many reasons Medical Guardian’s pendants and wristbands are preferable to using a cell phone for emergency services. The wearable devices are:

    • Highly water-resistant, which is not the case with all cell phones.
    • Will not fall into the water where you may not be able to retrieve the device safely.
    • Will not slip out of your hand if you fall while your cell phone may be irretrievable after a fall.
    • No dialing, just a push of a button.
    • There are several emergency situations where you could be too disabled to make a call.

    Note that the fall detection does not work 100 percent of the time, which is the case across all manufacturers of this type of device. Press the button if you fall.

  • How do I know when to consider emergency monitoring for myself or a loved one?
    The most obvious reason to use a monitoring device for safety is if an emergency is likely to be brought on by a seizure, stroke, heart attack, or conditions such as Parkinson’s disease. Other considerations are when the individual is frequently home alone or traveling alone, recovering from surgery or having difficulty communicating due to hearing loss or other medical issues. Medical Guardian devices are also ideal for the senior who enjoys an independent life but would simply feel safer with a way to reach emergency services quickly.

  • What is the benefit of having U.S.-based monitoring?
    Having monitoring facilities in all fifty states as well as Puerto Rico and Canada reduces the chance of communication failure due to language barriers. Operators speak English, Spanish, or another language using a third-party translation system. Operators are available all day, every day, even on holidays.

  • What emergency training do the operators have?
    Medical Guardian’s operators are trained to know when to contact emergency services, a relative or other designated safety contact to avoid sending an ambulance when it’s not necessary. Not all monitoring services can make that distinction. Medical Guardian has service awards, memberships, and certifications from The Electronic Security Association, Underwriters Laboratory (UL), The Monitoring Association TMA Five Star Certification and Factory Mutual Approvals.

  • I don’t have a landline. Can I still use Medical Guardian emergency response services?
    Only one of Medical Guardian’s four models, the Classic Guardian, requires a landline. The Home Guardian, Mobile Guardian, and Active Guardian all use AT&T’s nationwide cellular network at no additional cost to the customer. You do not need to be an AT&T subscriber.

Conclusion

Choosing the right medical alert company is a critical decision. Consider what each service package offers, then balance each package’s ease of use with the cost. In this age of outsourcing call center duties, Medical Guardian’s U.S.-based monitoring helps ensure communication between the senior and the operator so that emergencies are addressed with no time wasted. To learn more about Medical Guardian, call 888-362-3950 or check out their online order form.

Medical Guardian Reviews

Recent Reviews

August 13 2019 11:03PM

They were great at the beginning talked me into even getting a warranty agreement and they sent the information promptly however after activating it setting it up testing make sure they got everything and then just now having an actual medical emergency which machine would not work no one came when my parents press the buttons only to try to call customer service not once not twice three times as well as emailing for over a week and a half and no one has called me back answering services or they will call you back but they don’t I also asked for another necklace which I failed to get at the time when I actually activated the account took thinking back that should’ve been a clue of what their customer service and commitment is They however took my money probably very happily taking my money but no service in return

Patty C.
Sandy, UT
August 13 2019 12:17AM

I purchased this system for my grandmother back in May and cancelled the service in July. When I called in to cancel they said they would mail me a letter that I needed to sign and return in order to cancel, which struck me as very odd. I did so and am still being charged for the service that I have now twice tried to cancel. I am disgusted by this company and would not recommend to anyone. Don’t know how long they’ll continue to bill me for this service I don’t want.

Madeline H.
Southampton, PA
August 05 2019 11:36PM

Was told I bought the equipment. Lie. Do not trust this company. They tell you falsehoods then bill your bank acct for non service. I had to cancel my bank card. I never signed up for services. So now they are coming after me for a full year of service that I never even set up. DO NOT TRUST MEDICAL GUARDIAN.

Maria R.
Tampa, FL
July 30 2019 1:01AM

DO NOT TRUST THIS COMPANY. IT took 4 months of non service and problems for them to tell me they couldn’t provide service where I lived. Although I had no problems with another company. They kept trying to give me different devices that were not working but I was paying for. They also charge for every possible penny they can. From the day it is mailed before it’s even activated until the company deactivated AFTER they receive it. You have to pay for return shipping. They are only interested in making sales not the protection of customers.

Pat F.
Laguna Hils, SELECT A STATE
July 25 2019 11:15PM

After purchasing the Active unit and paying extra for 2 day shipping my mother in law will not be able to use it. She has a metal roof on her home and it blocks the GPS signal. The sales representative who was other wise very helpful did not ask if she had a metal roof. Medical guardian sells another unit but has a very limited range, not to be used outside the home. My mother in law does yard work which is where she recently fell. Very disappointed. Now we have to do more research to find a unit that will meet our needs

Karen W.
Jefferson, OH
July 23 2019 5:45AM

Terrible company (1) Take way TOO LONG to answer the phone. ALWAYS!! (2) Customer Service lacks sufficient familiarity with their products, and the process. FUNCTIONALLY INEPT. (3) If you have a problem with your equipment, the home office, apparently the only people who can help, are available only from 9-8. THINK ABOUT THIS ... 10:00 AT NIGHT AND YOUR SYSTEM STOPS WORKING...YOU CAN'T USE YOUR PENDANT TO SUMMON HELP IF NEEDED. Would have to call 911 --but what if you are diabled, live alone & you can't get to a phone. This is why you paid through the nose for Medical Guardian Protection. Very scary and insanely DANGEROUS. Disgusted.

Jan S.
Ny, NY
July 22 2019 7:56PM

My mother had this device for just about 3 months. I returned the unit since she was able to receive one through a state sponsored program. Her billing date was the 15th which they billed her credit card, they rec'd the unit back on the 18th. I expected to have some held back since it was after the billing date. When I spoke with the representative and I inquire how much she would get back, he informed me there is a restocking fee of about $35 or more. The monthly bill was $89.00 so essentially my mom will still end up paying most of the bill. This not Best Buy where they charge you a restocking fee if you open it up and return it. How else are you going to use the device if you don't open it. Whatever you do, always read the very fine print. Not a happy daughter.

P J.
Houston, TX
July 15 2019 4:13PM

The salesman who was so charismatic to promise me service and help with questions has never returned my calls or emails. Their “customer service” dept is inept and also pretend to provide personal service, but never follow through on actions promised. They now have my credit card for billing but recently billed me three times the cost and won’t refund for 7-10 day’s unlike other businesses who make it happen that day. Their directions for activation vary from salesperson to directions with the equipment to 6 different contacted customer service people. If I didn’t have to start over for my elderly confused Mother, I would change companies. Run as fast and far away from this company! There is no integrity for a company that pretends to care about people.

Monica D.
Racine, WI
May 29 2019 1:25PM

Please make sure you ask questions about being charge, if you return the equipment. I was charge 116.93 for not using the equipment. My suggest is to make sure you are explain when you return the equipment it is a restocking fee and they prorate your monthly charge. Lesson learned.

Cindy G.
PALMYRA, VT
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