There has been lots of doom and gloom in the news recently about the strain hospitals are facing. At the end of 2019, delays in A&E reached the highest level on record. The UK has an increasingly ageing population who require more hospital visits and longer stays in hospital beds. Here at Lifeline24, we believe that Personal Alarms for the elderly will be a crucial part of the solution to this growing problem.
Bed-blocking continues to be a problem across the country. This is where patients are unable to leave hospital due to social care costs or a lack of organised care, despite being medically ready to be discharged.
In June 2017, a study revealed that bed-blocking rose by 52% in three years. Statistics from the report included:
- Patients in England experience around 177,000 days' worth of delays – affecting more than 5,900 beds a day in April 2017.
- The tally of total delayed days rose from 116,261 in April 2014 to 177,137 three years later.
- Estimated actual beds blocked rose from 3,875 a day in April 2014 to 5,905 in April 2017.
According to the report, 36% of all social-care-related delays in April (or 23,900 days' worth) were linked to patients lacking a home care plan. This is where we believe personal alarms for the elderly can help.
Personal Alarms for the Elderly
The Lifeline Alarm system is an increasingly popular method of keeping people out of hospital and in the comfort of their own homes. This is a system of personal alarms for the elderly or disabled. It usually consists of a Lifeline pendant worn around the neck or wrist, alongside an alarm base unit which plugs into the mains.
If a Lifeline user needs medical assistance, they can press the red button on their pendant and know that help is on its way. Pressing the help button will send an alert to our 24/7 Response Team, who will be able to call for help, either by phoning the user's emergency contacts or the emergency services.
This means that the alarm user can remain independent at home, safe in the knowledge that our Response Team is there to answer their distress call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Relieving the Strain on Hospitals
Many of our customers buy an alarm from us after coming out of hospital, following a fall or health problem. Our personal alarms for the elderly often help them stay out of hospital in the long term. This is not only good for our customers but also great for hospitals.
Lifeline Alarms are already helping 1.7 million people stay safe at home. They can do the same for you or your loved one. The Lifeline Alarm is easy to install and simple to use. If you'd like to know more about the Lifeline system, you can find a detailed guide here.
Are Lifeline Alarms Available on the NHS?
The NHS does not provide Lifeline alarms. Traditionally, local authorities would offer personal alarm schemes on a means-tested basis. However, recent spending cuts mean that many people now have to pay towards their alarm costs. Meanwhile, in some places, local authority schemes have ended entirely. Luckily, providers like Lifeline24 remain a reliable and affordable option for elderly and disabled people across the UK.
To order your personal alarm for the elderly, you can either visit our website, or call us for free on 0800 999 0400. A member of our Customer Service team will be happy to answer any questions you may have. Alternatively, fill in the Contact Us form on our website and we'll get in touch as soon as we can.
Editor's Note: This post was originally published in January 2015. It was updated in June 2020 to reflect current information regarding NHS issues.