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Market Overview for Technology for Aging in Place

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Fall Detection Systems Feature New Technology That Keeps Seniors Safer, According to

Consumers can now benefit from unbiased information about the accuracy of fall detection systems in new product reviews on Many senior citizens who live independently often use a medical alert system to get help in an emergency such as falling, but when they are unable to press the button for help, the results can be devastating. Now, however, there is technology that will accurately detect if a person has fallen and automatically call for help.

How the products work and other information about fall detection systems are detailed in the report by RatingLab, a consumer website that reviews medical alert systems and other products for senior citizens. The report evaluates and compares the technology, features, accuracy rates, pricing and monitoring centers of several major fall detection systems.

Fall Detection Technology
According to RatingLab, today’s fall detection devices have built-in sensors that measure the body’s acceleration -- or change in acceleration - and position, using accelerometers and gyroscopes. “The technology is sophisticated enough to recognize various postures and can determine whether the person's motions are intentional (as in lying down) or not (as in falling),” the report says. When a fall is detected, a signal is sent to a response center and the call center associate will try to communicate with the elderly person through a speakerphone. If there is no response, the center will contact someone from a predetermined emergency list or an ambulance or both.

Choosing a fall detection system
Until now, it was difficult to shop for a reliable fall detection system because there was virtually no objective comparison information on them, like what is found on Consumer Reports. Consumers who are interested in acquiring a fall detection system for themselves or their family members should make sure that any system they consider provides accuracy rates and should be aware of any long-term contract or cancellation fees.

Of products reviewed, Philips Lifeline with AutoAlert claims a 95% accuracy rate and myHalo(TM) alarm system claims a rate of 98% accuracy for catastrophic falls. Reviews of each product and a Ratings Chart are available at

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RatingLab is a free website that gives consumers a better, faster way of getting objective ratings of products of interest. The staff puts similar products next to each other and compares them, feature for feature. RatingLab does the homework and reports what is good or bad about each, then gives the best products a Top Picks rating. The charts are easy to read and help consumers learn what’s important about a products, so they can shop with smarts.
Friday, February 3, 2012