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Personal Alarms for the Elderly Can Help the NHS

• Written by Thom


The coronavirus crisis has placed a significant strain on the NHS. Even before the pandemic began, hospitals were already under pressure to keep up with an increase in demand. What's more, the UK has an 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.

NHS Hospitals Under Strain

At the end of 2019, delays in A&E reached the highest level on record. These delays are partly due to bed blocking, which is an issue in NHS hospitals across the UK. Bed-blocking is where patients are unable to leave hospital due to social care costs or a lack of organised care, despite being medically ready to go home.

A 2017 study revealed that bed-blocking had risen 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. The pandemic has placed further stress on the provision of social care. Unfortunately, as of November 2021 the NHS was under more strain than ever before, with one in ten beds blocked. This is where we believe personal alarms for the elderly can help the NHS.

Personal Alarms for the Elderly

The Lifeline Alarm system is an increasingly popular method of keeping people out of hospitals and in the comfort of their own homes. A Lifeline Alarm usually consists of a Lifeline pendant worn around the neck or wrist, alongside an alarm base unit that plugs into the mains power.

If a Lifeline user needs assistance, they can press the 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 send help fast, 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. In some cases, having a personal alarm in place can shorten and even prevent hospital admissions.

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 great for our customers but also helpful for the NHS.

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 Lifeline24 Alarm is easy to install and simple to use. Plus the UK-based Lifeline24 Response Centre has received accreditation from the TEC Services Association. If you'd like to know more about the Lifeline24 system, you can find a detailed guide here.

Are Lifeline24 Alarms Available on the NHS?

The NHS does not provide Lifeline alarms. Until recently, many local authorities offered personal alarm schemes to pensioners and people with disabilities on a means-tested basis. However, in many places, these local authority schemes have faced cuts or been scrapped altogether. Luckily, Lifeline24 remains a reliable and affordable provider of personal alarms for elderly and disabled people across the UK. We offer a basic personal alarm plan as well as a fall detector for additional peace of mind.

Order your personal alarm by visiting 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 be in touch as soon as we can.


Editor's Note: This post was updated on 10th February 2022 to reflect the most recent information.

16 Thoughts On This Blog
Dianne says:
20/12/2020 at 4:13

With the lockdown can this still be set up? I live abroad and my elderly father in law lives alone on lockdown He is 8n Royston, Hertfordshire

Rebecca Laston says:
28/12/2020 at 11:48

Hello Diane, Thank you for your comment. We are operating as normal under the current lockdown restrictions. Please call our friendly Customer Service team on 0800 999 0400 should you have any further queries. Kind Regards, Lifeline24

Gill says:
01/01/2021 at 8:27

I don’t understand how one can respond if one is nowhere near the base unit. Are a microphone and speaker located within the alarm on one’s person?

David Sodey says:
15/01/2021 at 1:51

Is there an alarm that activates when we don’t know we need help. I.e. in a fit etc There was one called ManDown app which activated if you didn’t move your phone for a pre arranged period like 10 hours in bed at night.

Angela Vousden says:
18/01/2021 at 10:46

I have no family, I live alone. In April I will be 80. Would a panic button be of use.

Rebecca Laston says:
18/01/2021 at 3:09

Hello Gill, Thank you for your comment. The alarm base unit contains a very loud speaker and a sensitive microphone. Depending on where the user is in the property, they should be able to communicate over the base. In the event that the alarm user cannot be reached over the base, we will call back on their home number or mobile number. If we cannot reach the user at all we will assume it is an emergency and call through the contact list. As long as the alarm is activated our Alarm Response team will follow this up until they receive verbal confirmation that the user is safe. If you feel it is very important for the user to be able to communicate over the pendant we do provide an upgraded GPS alarm which you can view here:https://www.lifeline24.co.uk/gps-alarm/ Please let us know if we can be of further assistance. Kind Regards, Lifeline24

Rebecca Laston says:
18/01/2021 at 3:50

Hello Angela, Thank you for your comment. An alarm can be the perfect solution for anyone that would like added reassurance and peace of mind whilst living alone. For more information about how our systems work please visit: https://www.lifeline24.co.uk/personal-alarm-guide/. I have also organised for our information to be sent to the email address you have provided. Should you wish to discuss this further please call our friendly Customer Service team who can help you to find the best plan for you. Please let us know if you require any further assistance. Kind Regards, Lifeline24

Rebecca Laston says:
18/01/2021 at 3:59

Hello David, Thank you for your comment. We can supply a range of additional equipment for alongside the alarm system. This includes an epilepsy sensor and a bed sensor. You can find further information about what we can offer here: https://www.lifeline24.co.uk/additional-equipment/. Alternatively, you can call our friendly Customer Service team on 0800 999 0400 who can walk you through which plan might be the most suitable for you. Please let us know if we can be of any further assistance. Kind Regards, Lifeline24

Ashley Stewart says:
24/08/2021 at 7:10

Hi there , we would like to purchase an alarm which would allow my auntie to leave her home i.e going shopping . But give us peace of mind if she has a fall we can be alerted. Is this possible or just a home / garden alarm ?

Katie says:
25/08/2021 at 8:15

Hello Ashley, Thank you for your comment. It sounds like the Lifeline GO GPS alarm would be a great solution for your auntie. The Lifeline GO is a GPS-enabled alarm that works wherever you are, whether at home or on the go. This alarm also comes with an optional fall detection service, so you can be alerted if your auntie has a fall in the house or while out and about. If you would like to find out more about this alarm, click here to view our information page or simply give us a call on our freephone number: 0800 999 0400. Or if you prefer, you can order a GPS alarm online by clicking here. I hope this information is helpful. Kind regards to you and your auntie, Lifeline24

Sandra Simmons says:
16/12/2021 at 5:41

One thing I have found rewarding to do is collect cute little bottles - select and print inspirational and pretty memes and cut and roll and tie them and put them in the jars with a few pieces of pretty individually wrapped candy and tie a ribbon around the jar cover and give them to a person who makes visits to the sick in the hospitals.

Kyle says:
05/01/2022 at 10:47

Hello Sandra, Thank you for your comment. This sounds like a lovely way to support NHS workers and show that they are appreciated. Kind regards, Lifeline24

Selma says:
19/12/2021 at 12:48

Hi. My husband suffers from checking episodes due to his condition and our 3 year old daughter needs to stay with him when childcare not available. Would this be easy for our daughter to use if something happens to her dad as she doesn't know how to use a phone and can't open the door. Thank you in advance for your reply.

Kyle says:
06/01/2022 at 12:07

Hello Selma, Thank you for your question. In the event of an emergency, the Lifeline alarm can be activated at the press of a button. If your husband is wearing it during an episode, he may be able to press it himself. If not, it is possible that your daughter can simply press the red "Help" button on the base unit. If our response team do not hear a response, or cannot understand the person on the other end, they will assume it is an emergency and alert the emergency contacts and, if necessary, the emergency services. If you are concerned that your daughter will be unable to open the door, you can also opt to purchase a key safe. These will allow respondents to enter the home easily. We hope this has helped. Kind regards, Lifeline24

Mrs Julia Robinson says:
01/05/2022 at 1:30

I recently came out of hospital my balance is not good and I get vertigo and migraine witch sometimes I just stay in bed . My doctor said has anybody from lifeline been in touch I asked what for she said it’s because you live alone plus you keep falling but she never said anything about money . Is there any place that I can get it free ?.

Lifeline24 says:
03/05/2022 at 10:11

Hello Julia, Thank you for your comment. Unfortunately we cannot offer a free Lifeline alarm. However, you may be able to get funding through your local council to help afford the service. We hope this has proven helpful. Kind regards, Lifeline24

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