How you can stay independent with a community alarm
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As we age we need to adopt new strategies to help our families support us, many elderly parents can relate to this. Herts Careline is able to offer the support and services to make life easier and help older people stay independent at home for longer. Herts Careline’s marketing officer Stephanie Bevan explains how medical technology can ease the strain for you and your loved ones.
How can I live independently?
"Herts Careline services are like an assurance policy," explains Stephanie. "Many of our customers hope never to use it, but are comforted by the knowledge that it's there if they do."
Getting older brings its challenges; one of the most difficult to accept is feeling like your family are making sacrifices to care for you. This is where Herts Careline's 24-7 services can step in. They can support at times where maintaining levels of care are hard for families to do alone, or to offer reassurance for families that may want to go on holiday but are worried about leaving you unsupported. With a community alarm from Herts Careline someone is reachable at all times and will keep family members updated if there's a medical emergency.
Stephanie said: "If people rely on their families for support this can weigh on their minds but realising there is a service there to help can offer a lot of relief for older people and their relatives."
Are community alarms effective?
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People who join the service are given a wrist or necklace pendant which they can press and be connected to the Herts Careline 24-7 Hertfordshire based control room.
"Community alarm monitoring allows people who are vulnerable, isolated or may be suffering from a medical condition to live independently with the knowledge someone is always on hand to help if needed," says Stephanie.
When the pendant is pressed, the alert calls through an alarm system, fitted in the home and automatically connects with an operator that can check in with the caller and send the appropriate help. It may be as simple as contacting a neighbour or family to call around for reassurance, or in emergencies sending medical help as quickly as possible.
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"We encourage people to think about installing the technology before reaching crisis point. By getting them to think about their needs early on we can make sure they are prepared and have everything in place they need already," says Stephanie. Herts Careline work closely with patients to establish their needs and recommend the best equipment for them.
What do I do if I fall?
While wearers can press the pendant to trigger an alert, Herts Careline also offer other services to make sure you get the help you need no matter what. Fall detectors, worn on the wrist, sense if a person falls, and will send an automatic to the Control Room so they can get in touch and make sure you are ok. The operator will then check if you have fallen and send help, or if there's no response arrange for assistance very quickly.
A smoke detector can also be linked to the alarm system, so if it goes off Herts Careline Control Room will be alerted and they will contact you to ascertain if there's a fire in the home. The innovative technology is designed to make life as safe as possible for elderly individuals and their families.
"The equipment Herts Careline offers can make all the difference and give people the opportunity to remain in their own homes a little longer by offering a support system," says Stephanie.
Herts Careline is a not-for-profit service provided by the North Hertfordshire District Council, in partnership with Hertfordshire County Council offering 24 hours a day, 365 days a year service. Their aim is to help people stay independent, safe and supported in their own homes throughout the region. Their community alarm and telecare services have been providing help to residents across the county since 1982.