Mobile telecare is defined as technology which allows patients to be remotely monitored using cellular network technology to enable users to continue living an independent and active lifestyle. Personal Emergency Response Systems (PERS) are one of the most popular types of mobile monitoring. A recent study from research organisation Berg Insight has projected an annual compound growth rate of 40% in the uptake of these devices. In 2015, the number of users in Europe and North America stood at 450,000. It is predicted that this number will rise to 3.4 million in 2021.
The use of personal alarms is therefore likely to become increasingly common over the next few years, and for many an alarm will become an essential device, as indispensable as a mobile phone. Companies like Aster Telecare manufacture discreet and user-friendly alarms which are becoming essential elements of a care package for many elderly people who wish to maintain their current lifestyle whilst still taking care of their healthcare needs.
The pendant alarms manufactured nowadays are stylish and functional, making them as easy to wear as they are to use. Careline services will soon be available for more and more people as technology becomes more advanced, and statistics from Berg have predicted that there will be 36.1 million remotely monitored patients by 2020.
The use of mobile technology has revolutionised care for many patients because, previously, careline services were limited to the home. The combination of mobile technology and monitoring devices has led to a huge increase in freedom for many elderly people, because it means they can be connected to a support team whether they are at home or out and about. Just the ability to continue doing the things they have always enjoyed significantly increases the well-being of most elderly people, so mobile devices like alarms contribute towards a better quality of life for pensioners.
Indeed, alarms and other monitoring systems will not only benefit the elderly but will also have ramifications for social care. For example, a domestic abuse situation could be monitored by a remote care team, leading to better victim support. People who are sick or just returned home from hospital and recuperating from an illness or a procedure would also benefit from remote monitoring, even if it were only needed in the short term.
Many health bodies across Europe and North America are now turning to devices like personal alarms and panic buttons, as well as home adaptations such as motion sensors, to provide a cost-effective solution to elderly care. The mobile network technology and Bluetooth-enabled devices make it possible to connect a patient or user to an experienced support team 24-7. Advice and comfort can be provided at the touch of a button, and of course if more intervention is necessary, the emergency services can be contacted immediately. This will create a flexible safety net for millions of people over the next few years and beyond.