Best Medical Alert Apps for Seniors

Written By: William Rivers
Reviewed By: William Rivers
Published: October 25, 2021
Last updated: November 11, 2023

Some seniors feel that owning both a smartphone and a medical alert system is redundant. After all, statistics show that 81% of older adults aged between 60 to 69 already have a smartphone, which they can use to call for help any time. However, smartphones don’t function well in emergencies. Many accidents and conditions can render seniors incapable of navigating through intricate smartphone systems.

To ensure 24/7 access to medical assistance, explore medical alert apps. Technological advancements have made safety solutions far more efficient and functional. Nowadays, modern medical apps do more than just connect you to hospitals. Some platforms even summon help based on fluctuating vital signs that indicate a severe accident, hard fall, or medical emergency.

Top Medical Alert Applications for Seniors in 2022

Do you find yourself stuck between the top medical alert apps on the market? Keep reading! Use our in-depth comparison review as a starting point to identifying which options would help you stay safe and injury-free in your senior years.

Lifeline Response

  • Cost: $29.95/month
  • Platform Availability: Android and iOS

The Philips Lifeline Response app stands as a cross between medical alert apps and systems. This platform takes the comprehensive safety solutions of full-scale systems and integrates them into convenient standalone apps. Moreover, Lifeline Response still costs significantly less than most medical alert systems.

How it works: The app features a large blue button that occupies most of your screen. If you click it, the app will connect you to the 24/7 Philips Lifeline Monitoring center.

Senior Safety

  • Cost: Free; $45/year for the pro version
  • Platform Availability: Android

Senior Safety stands among the best medical apps for seniors with memory loss problems. Caregivers can set up the app to send alerts if the senior wanders too far, suffers a severe fall, or calls for emergency assistance.

Moreover, the system has an app monitoring tool. It tracks phone activity to ensure that the senior does not fall victim to online scams, phishing websites, and other cyberattacks.

How it works: Both caregivers and seniors should install the app on their phones. As long as the senior user carries their smartphone around, the caregiver will receive updates on the former’s whereabouts and vital signs. 


  • Cost: $4.99/month 
  • Platform Availability: Android and iOS

FallSafety from Tidyware provides a comprehensive suite of mobile health & safety solutions. The app features fall detection, automatic alerts, and one free emergency contact. There is also a built-in panic button, automatic callbacks, a siren alarm, and more. Seniors who have an Apple Watch will benefit even more, as the application has a Watch integration that provides all the necessary safety features. 

How it works: The app alone can serve as a medical alert system, but having an Apple Watch can let seniors roam around without their phones while still remaining protected. 

Lively App

  • Cost: $19.99 to $39.99/month
  • Platform Availability: Android, iOS, and Jitterbug Smart

The Lively App is an all-in-one health and wellness app. It monitors your vital signs, keeps track of your whereabouts, sends distress signals, and detects sudden hard falls. Depending on your subscription, you can also use it for general consultations. Just a few clicks will connect you to their accredited medical professionals.

How it works: While the Lively App functions as a standalone app, getting the Lively Wearable2 device as well enables you to maximize the platform’s features.

Medical Alert Systems vs Medical Alert Apps

First-timers often make the mistake of using medical alert systems and apps interchangeably. No, these two terms do not hold the same meaning. Medical alert apps are standalone apps that you download straight to your smartphone, while medical alert systems come complete with their own hardware and software package.

Standalone Apps

Standalone apps offer straightforward, accessible protection. They cost less than medical alert systems and require far less involvement to install. In most cases, you simply need to download them from the App or Google Play Store.

While accessible, standalone apps also have several limitations. Their simple, straightforward limits users to standard features, like alerting emergency contacts. Most don’t even connect to 911 automatically.

Best for: Standalone apps suit technologically adept older adults confident in their abilities to navigate through their smartphones during intense, high-pressure emergencies.

Medical Alert Systems

Medical alert systems serve as full-service, comprehensive safety solutions. These systems come with hardware devices and downloadable applications for smartphone integration. In most cases, the hardware device that these systems come with consists of a simple button used to summon medical assistance. These devices also connect you to a 24/7 emergency operator.

The only downside is that medical alert systems cost far more than standalone apps. You can buy medical alert apps for less than $10, but full-scale systems will set you back by nearly a hundred dollars per month. Fixed-income seniors receiving around $1,400 per month might have trouble paying for such a service.

Best for: Seniors who want an all-in-one medical alert system for various emergencies and accidents.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can a smartwatch be used as a medical alert? 

Smartwatches can be used for medical alert monitoring. In fact, there are some apps that can be downloaded directly into a smartwatch. 

Do you need WiFi for Life Alert?  

The Life Alert system just requires a landline, which means you do not need WiFi for it to work in your home. 

Can smartwatches call 911? 

Several smartwatches allow the user to dial 911 in an emergency. While the specific settings may differ according to each phone, the emergency 911 button can be activated by holding down the side button of your watch. Keep in mind that you should be connected to a Wi-Fi network or in Bluetooth range to your cellphone.

Is there an emergency alert app for iPhones? 

You can download the SOS Family Emergency Alert app on the App Store. ‎This app works on iPads, iPhones, and Apple watches. 

Why am I not getting emergency alerts on my phone?  

If you aren’t receiving emergency alerts, check your phone settings and make sure you have emergency alerts turned on. Depending on your phone carrier, these alerts may sometimes be opted out of. 

After choosing your preferred medical alert app, explore the platform. All medical alert systems have a user-friendly interface. However, minimal practice and familiarization are necessary to utilize these systems to the fullest during emergencies. You wouldn’t want to get caught ill-prepared, right?

Also, while medical alert apps offer comprehensive protection against medical emergencies and accidents, they do not function as a do-it-all safety solution. Staying injury-free goes beyond medical apps. Explore the different technological advancements in the safety and communications sector, then see which ones to incorporate into your daily routine.

Do you want to learn more about how technology can help you maintain a good quality of life as you age? Senior Strong has you covered! Check out our piece on tech tips for seniors.

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William Rivers is an editor with a master’s degree in Human Services Counseling at Maine State University. He has more than 20 years of experience working in the senior healthcare industry.
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