Pros / It's one of the most affordable medical alert systems.
Cons / The mobile device failed to connect with the call center on several occasions.
Verdict / Bay Alarm is very competitively priced with packages starting at about $20 per month, but there are significant concerns about the emergency response performance.
Bay Alarm Medical is among the most competitively priced medical alert services with four medical alert packages ranging from in-home landline systems featuring the very common MyTrex MXD system, a GPS mobile medical alert system and bundle packages featuring both. Bay Alarm is also the only service to offer an in-car medical alert system. While this service is among the most affordable, the overall performance was very disappointing.
Bay Alarm Medical stands out in contrast with other medical alert services because it's most affordable system costs just $19.95 per month. This package, a MyTrex MXD (a system made by Rescue Alert) beats even GreatCall's Lively Mobile by $5 per month. Of course, the Lively Mobile is still the better option, even at an additional $5 per month because it's a mobile GPS device, but Bay Alarm's mobile GPS system is also very affordable at just $29.95 per month – far below the $38 per month average. These prices, while certainly competitive, are deflated by the generally poor performance.
The call response time received a D- grade. While it wasn't the slowest service, the mobile GPS system failed to connect to an emergency responder four times throughout the testing. Let me repeat that – it failed to connect with an emergency responder four times. Imagine if your loved one needed help and an emergency responder didn't answer the call. This is unacceptable. In each case, the call sounded like it had been answered. It certainly made a connection. But rather than hearing a voice answer, I was met with what sounded like someone randomly pressing buttons on a dial pad. This beeping often lasted minutes before the call was dropped. Even when emergency responders successfully answered, the call was often preceded and concluded with this random beeping.
On a relatively positive note, every failed connection resulted in an emergency responder calling the phone number listed on our account to make sure I was okay. So even though the device failed to connect with an operator, the emergency responders still followed through to make sure I was okay. Unfortunately, during the first failed connection, I didn't realize two things: that the call had been dropped and that they were calling the listed number while I was still waiting for them to answer. Nobody was at the desk of the listed phone when they called, so they assumed I needed help and sent an ambulance to find me.
A similar situation occurred later in the week, though it happened hours after I'd completed testing for the day. I don't know for certain if Bay Alarm Medical was responsible for the second instance, but considering the issues I'd had throughout the week, this service seemed to be the likely culprit. Earlier that day, the fourth failed call occurred during testing. Knowing they'd call the listed phone number, I was able to answer the subsequent call. However, several hours later, I took a stroll around the block and returned to find an ambulance. The EMTs, again, were looking for me. They'd been called by a medical alert service, though they didn't know what service called it in. Since I hadn't tested for hours and all the devices were locked in a room, I don't know how the ambulance was called, but it goes to show just how easy it is for such communication failures to occur.
The in-home system, the MyTrex MXD, is Bay Alarm Medical's best package. Not only is it the most affordable medical alert system on the market, but the MyTrex system has an excellent speaker with great volume. The speaker's overall quality received an A- grade while the volume received an A grade, averaging a max of 89-dB. This volume is especially critical with an in-home medical alert system because you need to hear the base station at all corners of your home or apartment.
Bay Alarm recently released a unique and intriguing medical alert system called the Splitsecnd. This device plugs into the car's 12-volt charger and includes impact sensors, GPS, a help button and a cellular connection. Not only does it automatically call for help in an accident, you can track the vehicle on a app, create driver profiles and view routes for trips. While I didn't test or review this system, it's worth checking out, especially if your aging loved one is still driving. That said, it's not necessarily only for seniors, but can be a valuable medical alert system for any driver.
Bay Alarm Medical has some very attractively priced medical alert systems, and the in-home MyTrex MXD system is a solid device with a loud and clear speaker. However, the mobile GPS system performed very poorly, failing to connect to the emergency call center on multiple occasions throughout testing.