CVS ® Medical Alert System Review

 

The Medical Alert System from CVS, Connect America and the Alarm Alliance offers you basic personal emergency protection at a very competitive price. It’s a no-frills service that aims to provide great care through a singular focus.

The brands have united behind the CVS name to help increase their distribution and have been offering seniors a very good set of protections since 2005. This is one of the few medical alert systems that you can purchase in a store – as well as online or via the phone – which gives some customers a sense of relief since they can see the device a little more clearly before paying for anything.

Please note that only some CVS stores will carry this unit and you’ll only be able to exchange or purchase it if the device is in stock. If unavailable in your area, you’ll have to purchase it through a Connect America regional sales representative.

The only downside we’ve seen from the CVS Medical Alert System is that there’s some confusion over how to get parts replaced or fixed. If your equipment doesn’t work properly, you can exchange in the store for a new device, but you can’t get a refund through the store. If you want a refund, you’ll have to write and call the company directly. If you’ve purchased online or via the phone, CVS offers free replacement of any faulty equipment. This calling option seems to have worked best for most people.
With no equipment costs, shipping fees, or other activation fees, the CVS system is a very straightforward unit that will work well with anyone on a budget.

 

 

Products

The CVS Medical Alert System offers a single package deal, which allows the company to sell it at stores all around the U.S. Pricing in stores may differ since some packages include the first one to three months in their cost, but if you purchase online or over the phone it will cost $29.95.

The CVS Medical Alert System uses the industry standard practice of connecting a base unit to a portable help button and when either is pressed you’ll be connected to an emergency services operator to determine what help you need and who to call for you.

System Features

The CVS Medical Alert System ships in a single kit that will contain everything you need to set up your device. In the kit, you’ll get:

  • Two-way communication base station with emergency, phone and cancel buttons.
  • Portable emergency help button that can worn on the belt, lanyard, or as a wristwatch.
  • Battery backup that can last for 32 hours.
  • Power adapter for the base unit.
  • Telephone cord to connect to your home telephone line.

The emergency help button is easy-to-push even for consumers with arthritis and it’s also waterproof so you can wear it in the shower. Some users say it doesn’t always perform well in the bathtub, but this is easy to avoid by not submerging the unit for long periods of time.

The CVS Medical Alert System focuses on getting you timely help so the company promises a quick response with an operator and emergency services. You’ll get the right help you need and can even have operators contact your primary doctor or family members in the event of an emergency.

 

Call Center Information

Your CVS Medical Alert System connects directly to one of the emergency monitoring stations provided through the Connect America Medial Alarm company. The main monitoring station is listed with and regulated by the Underwriters’ Laboratories for Protective Signaling.

Connect America outsources some of its other call center activities and emergency responses, so you may not always get the same response team and they’ll often be located in different parts of the U.S. This is actually good news because it means you’ll never get a tired operator and all of your information is properly collected and maintained so that you can always get good help.

When you press your help button and speak to the operator through the high-speed two-way communication system in your base unit, the operator will immediately check on your situation.

After assessing you and your needs, as well as comparing concerns to what’s on file or previous emergencies, the operator will help in deciding who to contact. If the operator is unable to hear you or you’re unresponsive, they will immediately dispatch emergency medical services to your location.

When you set up the service, you’ll provide a medical history and allergies so that this can be passed on to EMS responding to an emergency at your home. This information is never shared with anyone beyond the responding units, so your privacy is safe with CVS.

 

Tips from CVS

The company also provides consumers with a list of tips and reminders for better operating the CVS Medical Alert System. Chief among these is the need to test your system weekly. This comes with a few more steps than its competitors so we’ve laid those out below to give you an idea of how it works.

To test the system:

  1. Call 1-800-325-1787 from the phone line the system is connected to. This puts it in Test Mode.
  2. Inform the operator on the phone that you’re testing the service.
  3. Press the red Emergency button on the base station and wait for the operator to answer.
  4. Tell the operator you are testing and let them know if you will use multiple tests. You can walk around your home or yard to test the range. When you let the operator know that you’re doing multiple tests, they will put the unit in test mode for 15 to 30 minutes so no emergency services are accidentally called to your home.
  5. Walk around pressing the test button. Make a note of how many times you pressed the button and at what time and place you pressed the button.
  6. Call the 1-800-325-1787 testing phone number again and the agent who answers will let you know how many signals it received and when these were received.

Other great reminders include the face that your account password and number will be printed on the top of your device, so you always have them on hand when contacting customer service for any reason.

Don’t forget to set up the unit in a central location or use the base station’s ability to answer phone calls by simply pressing your button to activate the speakerphone. Press the button a second time and you’ll end the call you’re on without needing to find the phone.

 

 

Common Questions

“Can I cancel?”

You can cancel the service any time after the initial 3-month service plan. If you pay in advance for any service, you’ll get a refund on that unused time. The companies say that they must receive all equipment in good working order before they refund any money or cancel the monthly $29.95 charge.

“How much does it cost to get help?”

The service only costs you $29.95 each month for monitoring. You don’t pay extra based on use or false alarms. However, if you need medical help such as an ambulance, you or your insurance will have to pay for that outside help. In some areas, you may get federal assistance paying for medical services such as the CVS Medical Alert System.

“Is there a warranty?”

There is no specific service warranty provided, however the company will replace any defective pieces of equipment. You’ll need to both call and write to the company about any defective equipment in order to get a full replacement without having to pay.

“Does it test? Is there a service?”

It is your sole responsibility to test your equipment and the companies will provide no testing while you have it. You are also responsible for retesting the system whenever the power goes out and comes back or if you change your home phone service, such as installing a phone line from your Internet company.

Pros

No shipping costs.
No activation fees.
No long-term contracts.
Has Braille lettering on the base unit buttons.
Works with multiple times of home phone lines.
Easy and simple to use without confusing extras.
Quick response times.
Good range for must but it varies, so be sure to test it.

 

 

Cons

Requires a home landline phone.
No fall detection or pill reminder options.
Can cause confusion about returning units to the store or through the company’s customer service phone number.
“Installation with no phone” branding has confused some users. This means you can install it without a phone handset in the area, but you’ll still need a basic landline for the service to work.

 

 

Final Recommendation

If you want a simple service that provides basic emergency protection for you or your loved ones, look no further. The CVS Medical Alert System will help seniors feel safe at home and its quick response times have made family feel better about having it installed. You’ll be getting a top medical alert system with no hidden costs, so it’s easy to budget for and is cheap enough to not cause a strain for those living on a fixed income.

 

We do not sell CVS products, only review it. We’ve located a great retailer for you to get this service and they can be found at MedicalAlertSystem.com.

Have you tried the services from CVS? Do you have thoughts you think our readers should hear? Scroll down and give us your feedback so we can help everyone choose the right medical alarm system to keep them safe and sound.


1.3 Total Score
4 reviews

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  1. Reply
    David April 14, 2015 at 6:13 pm
    1
    Overall Score
    20

    I can’t comment on the system since my Grandmother refused to set it up but the customer service department is lacking. The representative basically hung up on me when I tried to return the unit and when I called the number on the ad I had at home the system “disconnected” me. It shouldn’t be this hard to return the product, its a great idea but not if the consumer gets a hard time when trying to return the unit. My grandmother is 93 years old and she simply did not want the unit, am I supposed to argue with her to keep it?

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  2. Reply
    Ron A May 13, 2015 at 8:00 pm
    1.5
    Overall Score
    30

    Good things: The device seems to work. Purchasing was simple.

    Questionable things: Don’t know how different the CVS system is than others. Likely more similar than different.

    Bad things: This isn’t as much about the money as it is the character. I received a phantom charge for $18 from CVS after I had paid for the unit. When I questioned my sales person, he said he thought I was in a hurry (I wasn’t) so he expedited shipment. Also said that a “refund” would be promptly processed. I’ve now followed up several times. Always received the same promise, but never a refund. We have another family in need of an alert system but will not deal again with CVS. Another negative is I assumed that since CVS has a presence in many areas, that the user could go to the local drugstore for assistance. Not true. Very disappointed, I feel exploited.

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