RescueTouch is unlike the other medical alert services we’ve reviewed. In fact, it’s quite the unique medical alert service altogether. For starters, the company recently expanded and rebranded to become Florida Health Alert and Technology, a telehealth focused company. RescueTouch is just one facet of the company’s focus. But even within this focus, RescueTouch is a unique option for a medical alert system, as the company only has one mobile GPS device that is packaged with various features.
In our RescueTouch review, we'll touch on why the Chit-Chat feature is our favorite for senior couples. This allows spouses to talk to each other like Walkie-talkies through the device. This can help to improve communication between senior loved ones. And it’s a feature you won’t find elsewhere, which is why RescueTouch is our pick for best medical alert system for senior couples.
Medical alert systems
As mentioned, RescueTouch only offers one mobile medical alert system. The device is waterproof, GPS-enabled, and can have fall detection. It’s also available in a variety of colors. The device connects to AT&T or T-Mobile.
You have a variety of packages to choose from:
Family Response: With this feature, the device calls a family member or neighbor for help rather than an emergency response center.
Family Response with Fall Detection: This adds fall detection to the Family Response package.
Chit-Chat Twin-Pack: This allows two devices to chat with each other while also calling family members or neighbors for help..
9-1-1 Direct: This calls 911 directly. It’s the most affordable medical alert system on the market.
The Whole Shebang: This includes everything from family connect to fall detection and an emergency response center instead of 911, though calling 911 directly is still an option.
Chit-Chat Monitored: Capable of calling an emergency response center while also providing chit-chat feature with an additional device.
The RescueTouch SOS GPS medical alert system is waterproof. (Image credit: Future)
In all of our testing, the RescueTouch rarely had any issues. At first we thought we received a dud because it wouldn’t charge, but we eventually realized that you have to push it into the docking unit until you feel a vibration for it to charge. In addition, we never had a false alert with it. The only other service to boast of such a claim was GreatCall.
We would like the speaker quality to be better and louder, but it’s sufficient enough to communicate effectively. That said, the clarity isn’t great compared to other mobile medical alert systems with large speakers. And in fall detection tests, RescueTouch was effective about 70-percent of the time, which is excellent by comparison. Most fall detection pendants were too sensitive or too dull and many mobile devices with fall detection are too sensitive.
Emergency response center
RescueTouch is partnered with AvantGuard, a five diamond monitoring center based in Ogden, Utah, which is the same city we tested these services in. AvantGuard also has a call center in Rexburg, Idaho, ensuring redundancies in the event one call center was at capacity. The monitoring center also handles other services, like home security, carbon monoxide, and fire. As such, the operators receive excellent and thorough training.
With that said, the performance was disappointing. Despite being partnered with an excellent call center that was in the same city as we tested, the call response times were below average. RescueTouch’s average call response time was about 80 seconds in the first round of three-week testing and 85 seconds in the second round of three-week testing. By comparison, GreatCall averaged 20 seconds in the first round of testing and 15 seconds in the second round.
The SOS mobile GPS device charges in a cradle. (Image credit: Future)
The quality of the calls didn’t stand out either. Roughly half of the calls we made were answered by borned and hurrie operators. They failed to ask us to confirm our identity and often didn’t ask if we were okay. It wasn’t awful. It was merely sufficient. However, when you’re considering a service to handle your emergency, sufficient is not sufficient. It needs to be impressive.
Medical alert service
The best part of RescueTouch is the service. The company has decidedly taken a different approach to the medical alert and health monitoring industry and we wish more services tried to do the same. For starters, they’ve gotten rid of the in-home systems and only offer mobile systems, which are better and safer for your senior loved one. Next, they offer features that you simply don’t find elsewhere. The family chat, for example, allows you to text or call a family member or neighbor when you need help. Most seniors are more likely to press the button if it calls a family member than an emergency response operator, which can feel intimidating. Also, not every “emergency” is an emergency. Sometimes you just need help getting out of a chair, not an ambulance.
RescueTouch focuses on senior couples like no other service. (Image credit: Rescue Touch)
But most of all, we love the Chit-Chat feature. Most medical alert services assume your senior loved one is alone, but many senior couples live together. With the Chit-Chat feature, they can flirt with each other from across the house. They can also keep tabs on each other or ask the other for help if needed.
The most affordable package offered by RescueTouch is the 9-1-1 Caller. This simply calls 911 at the press of a button and costs just $20 per month, making it the most affordable medical alert system on the market. And since it’s a mobile medical alert system, it’s far safer than the more expensive in-home landline systems used by most services as their “cheap” option. That said, having a device that only calls 911 can feel intimidating to many seniors.
The Whole She-bang option is the best value. (Image credit: RescueTouch)
The company's other packages are mostly comparable to medical alert packages offered by other companies. If you want the Five Diamond monitoring center with fall-detection and GPS features, it costs $40, which is average for a premium mobile package. If you want the Chit-Chat feature, you’ll spend roughly $64 per month, but this includes two devices.
If you’re not satisfied with what other medical alert services are offering, then RescueTouch might be what you’re looking for because this company is not like other medical alert services. It only offers mobile medical alert systems and includes packages that you don’t find elsewhere, like family monitoring for when you just want to contact family members when you need help and the chit-chat feature that allows you to chat with your spouse.
Since the packages are generally very different from other services, it’s difficult to compare RescueTouch to other services. That said, if you opt for the monitoring service (the whole shebang), we weren’t impressed with the call response times or the quality of the calls. The fall detection was decent though.