Approximately 30,000 seniors die from a fall-related death each year. Combine that staggering statistic with the anticipated shortage of registered nurses, and you might be wondering: How can seniors protect themselves from injuries that become fatal or require long-term medical care? While it’s not always possible to prevent falls, even with home modifications or lifestyle changes, seeking prompt medical care may help prevent lengthy hospital stays and long-term complications. That’s why many elderly adults trust the performance of medical alert systems, also known as life alert systems.

The best medical alert systems provide constant monitoring day and night, so you always have convenient access to emergency care. Some life alert systems have a handy help button that notifies loved ones or medical professionals, so you can quickly request assistance when you need it. Others rely on automatic fall detection alerts that let operators know when a senior may be injured, even if the subscriber is unresponsive or cannot reach the help button.

Unfortunately, life alert systems often have ongoing subscription fees, plus installation, activation and shipping costs. These expenses can quickly put a strain on seniors’ budgets, so many elderly adults search for free monitoring devices. Finding a life alert system at no cost isn’t easy, but it’s possible. We’ve compiled several options below to help you narrow down your search for a complimentary medical alert system.

Contact Your Health Insurance Company

Some insurance providers cover the cost of life alert systems. Whether you qualify for a free device depends on numerous factors, including the type of coverage you have, your location and your income. Benefits might not be outlined in your subscriber portal or guide, so contact providers directly if you are unsure whether coverage is available.

Medicare typically doesn’t offer reimbursement or discounts for life alert devices, so you may want to contact Medicaid first if you have dual coverage. We’ve included information about each of these health insurance programs below so you can decide how to proceed during your quest for life alert system coverage.


Many elderly adults have Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B. Medicare Part A primarily covers major care, such as eligible stays in a nursing home or hospitalization costs. Medicare Part B focuses on one-time expenses or short-term treatments, such as doctor’s visits, blood tests or imaging scans. Unfortunately, neither of these plans typically cover life alert systems.

Here are some common questions you may have about Medicare coverage:

Does Medicare Part C cover life alert systems?

Yes, you may have success getting reimbursement from Medicare Part C. Medicare Part C is a supplemental plan that helps cover the cost of medically necessary devices.

Does Medicare Advantage cover life alert systems?

Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part C are the same thing. Medicare Advantage may cover the cost of life alert systems if the insurance program deems them medically necessary.

What are some conditions that may qualify for a Medicare-funded life alert system?

Medicare doesn’t have a list of specific conditions that may benefit from life alert systems. Instead, the insurance program focuses on the needs of each individual applicant before deciding whether a device may benefit them. You might get approved for a device if you have dementia or plan to transition back to your home after receiving assisted living care at a facility.


Medicaid has several options for seniors seeking help paying for life alert systems. You can apply for Medicaid assistance for life alert devices even if you do not qualify for reimbursement from Medicare.

Here are some questions you may have as a Medicaid recipient:

Do all Medicaid plans offer coverage for life alert systems?

Not all Medicaid plans cover the cost of life alert systems. You may need to request a waiver from Medicaid if you want help covering life alert system fees.

How do you request help for life alert systems from Medicaid?

Contact your Medicaid provider by dialing the number on the back of your card. You can also call 2-1-1 if you need help locating a local agency that can answer questions about Medicaid programs.

Which Medicaid waivers or programs may cover life alert systems?

Medicaid waivers and programs vary across the nation, but here are some that may help cover the cost of life alert systems:

  • Money Follows the Person
  • Home and Community Based Services
  • Personal Care Attendant program

How does Medicaid classify life alert systems?

Medicaid classifies life alert systems aka medical alert systems as Personal Emergency Response Services (PERS). Medicaid covers the costs of PERS for qualifying subscribers because it helps them age at home rather than at a facility.

Explore Benefits for Veterans

Elderly veterans may qualify for a complimentary life alert system from one of two providers. Approved devices have limited features when compared to other well-known medical alert system providers, but you may still find it beneficial to have one.

Here are some common questions about benefits for veterans:

Does the VA pay for life alert devices?

The Department of Veterans Affairs covers the cost of a life alert system from an approved provider. Currently, the VA pays for a qualifying senior’s preferred device from one of two companies.

Does TRICARE cover life alert devices?

TRICARE may cover the cost of a life alert device for retired military professionals and their spouses, but coverage isn’t guaranteed.

Which companies provide life alert systems for veterans?

Veterans who apply for assistance from the VA can receive a life alert system from LiveLife Personal Mobile Alarms or MedEquip Alert.

Speak With Senior Assistance Agencies

Area Agencies on Aging (AAA) provides assistance for seniors across the nation. Reach out to your local Area Agency on Aging for help receiving a free life alert system. The agency can connect you with other agencies or inform you about grants and scholarships for seniors.

What services does the AAA offer?

The AAA offers services such as meal delivery, transportation services and homemaker assistance with the goal of helping elderly adults remain independent.

Who qualifies for AAA services?

Requirements vary by location. Contact your local AAA for more information about eligibility and programs.

Does the AAA recommend a specific life alert system?

The AAA does not recommend a specific device or company for life alert services.

Contact Medical Alert Providers

Many medical alert providers understand the budget restraints of elderly subscribers, so they partner with programs and organizations that offer discounts. You can learn more about these programs by contacting your preferred medical alert provider directly.

However, keep in mind that a free device may still have other fees. You may still have to pay for a monthly subscription, shipping, installation, activation or cancellation. Learn about all of these potential expenses before you accept a free device from a medical alert provider.

The right medical alert system can save your life, but high fees may deter you from getting the monitoring services that you need. Consider the suggestions above before you abandon your search for a medical alert system, as many companies connect seniors with free or reduced-price options.

Overview Of The Top Recommended Medical Alert Systems
Bay Alarm Medical
  • Starts at $19.95
  • In-Home, Mobile GPS, & Smartwatch Options
  • Free Shipping + Free Month on Select Plans
See Packages → Read Our Review →
  • Starts at $19.95
  • Free Lock Box
  • No Landline Required
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Aloe Care
  • Starts at $24.99 monthly + one-time equipment fee
  • In-home and mobile devices available
  • Hands-free system with motion detection
See Packages → Read Our Review →
Medical Guardian
  • Starts at $29.95
  • Free Shipping & Lock Box
  • Special: 1 Month Free
See Packages → Read Our Review →
  • Starts at $18.28
  • Up to 800 Feet of Range
  • Starting Fee as Low as $0
See Packages → Read Our Review →
  • Starts at $20.79
  • Up to 1,300 Feet of Range
  • Starting Fee as Low as $0
See Packages → Read Our Review →
  • Starts at $24.95
  • 1,000 Feet of Range
  • Monthly Fall Detection At Just $10/mo
See Packages → Read Our Review →
  • Starts at $29.95
  • Up to 1,000 Feet of Range
  • Monthly Fall Detection At Just $10/mo
See Packages → Read Our Review →
  • Starts at $29.95
  • Up to 500 feet of range
  • No Intial Fees
See Packages → Read Our Review →
  • Starts at $29.95
  • Up to 1,000 feet of range
  • Free fall detection for mobile device
See Packages → Read Our Review →