Connecting the elderly

I got a call this morning, Mum had had a fall and couldn’t get up. It’d taken a while shuffling around to get to a phone off a table.

Off course I shot over straight away, there’ll be a few bruises but she’s OK.

Reason for the post, can the Alexa/Echo dots make an out going call with voice activation? Mum’s got basic Doro phone but it has bluetooth, also an early Ipad 2 which she uses to face time me and my (Ozzy) brother.

Another relative had the necklace emergency service, probably £30+ a month. Not quite there yet plus I normally call twice a day :innocent:

yes they can make outgoing Skype calls. If you get the ones with a screen they have a camera and you can look in.

of course you’ll need to get the user to speak the right incantations etc

I used to pay for an SOS lanyard for mother, the biggest problem was getting her to wear it.

One of the reasons for the iPad is its ease of use (she’s 83), she could Skype me, but not the neighbours. Telephone functionality would be preferable?

Another thought, can you make out going calls off an I-watch? It’d mean my old iPhone but that can be sorted.

JB, ladies trousers don’t have pockets, and I agree about not wearing the necklace which is the point about a voice activated system?

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she could Skype a landline or a mobile with a paid up Skype account

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We had the same call 2 weeks ago when a relative fell, fortunately they had the cordless phone nearby as they forgot the button round the neck. If you Google these alarm buttons they can cost about 13 quid a month or less. When elderly folks fall they need it as simple as possible due to all the stress etc.

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I think the latest incarnation of the lanyard or wrist button is a necklace with an accelerometer that summons help automatically through the phone line in the event of a fall.

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They’ve been around a while - ones with tilt switches are also available and I looked at using them for protecting a lone worker in a cluttered (trip hazard) environment maybe 15 years ago. A significant issue can be which number the managing company should call. One way and another any of us can be away from our phone from time to time and the emergency services haven’t got the capacity to handle what could be repeated calls about someone who’s fine but prone to just putting their monitor on the dressing table every so often. Maybe they’ve found ways of handling these problems now ?


The Apple Watch has fall detection and can automatically call 999 and texts the SOS number assigned.