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Veteran PERS Installer Explains How He Came to Saving Lives with Electronic Caregiver

 How I became involved with ECG, Electronic Caregiver

I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase, “If you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything” which can mean a lot of things but for me, it means that I stand for helping others “not to fall”.

I was introduced to this industry a few years back when I became an installer for a well-known company that manufactured PERS units, Personal Emergency Response Systems. These were units about the size of a small toaster that sat on a counter somewhere in the “center” of the home where a person spent most of the day, with the person wearing a wristband or neck pendant that they would push in the event of a fall or any emergency.

I absolutely loved what I did. The company faxed or emailed me the work order, I called the person (who was expecting the call (the unit was usually ordered by a caregiver, nurse, or other health professionals), went to the home, “installed” the system, and then explained how to use it. “Explaining” took the most time.

It sounds simple and it was except that I found myself spending time explaining, and educating the person on how to wear it, and to wear it ALWAYS (to never, never, and never take it off; even when leaving home because they may forget to put it back on) and if ANYTHING (meaning “anything”; even if they just wanted to “talk”) that they only needed to PUSH THE BUTTON. And, I spent a great deal of time “convincing” people to comply.  

For many, it was confusing and “different” to wear something. For others, it was having an additional, strange object sitting next to the sugar and coffee containers on their counter. And still for others, and this was a big one, they were in denial thinking that they DID NOT NEED this and that their kids wanted them to have it. When I would return to troubleshoot why their unit wasn’t working I found some of them unplugged from the wall, some hidden behind bread boxes and sugar canisters, packed in a box waiting to be returned. Sometimes the subscriber was self-conscious and thought everyone “noticed” that they were wearing the wrist band or pendant. Instead of an “installer”, I think the job was that of an “educator”.

Having done this for about 10 years I think I can assure you that I’ve seen it all. I actually have an education degree and love teaching, and I know “how” to teach. If you’ve ever had an instructor who you “did not understand”, you know what I mean; it wasn’t you, I believe with my whole heart that it was your instructor. (Well, I digress; that’s another book).

I was good at doing these installs because I was an educator and (modestly can say that) I understood the product and service… but more importantly I “knew” the concern of the role reversal that takes place with the adult child now having to care for a senior parent… and I also knew that the senior parent wanted to retain dignity and independence.

All of this is why I’m writing this. I want you to know that “I feel your pain”. I feel the concern that the adult caregiver has with a senior living at their residence who is alone all day while the caregiver is stressed at work wondering if mom or dad are taking their medicine, the right medicine at the right times. Wondering if they fell while getting up and going to the bathroom. They may think about their parent cutting themselves while preparing something in the kitchen, falling from a step stool, tripping on uneven floor levels or slipping on wet surfaces, or getting in and out of the shower or bathtub. This pain only increases when a parent lives just down the block or in another state.

I also want you to know that I’ve been there. I’ve seen it. And I continually am trained to be there; to see it. And I want you to join me. Read this material. Make everything as safe as possible. Follow my Facebook page and get updated tips and watch informative and important LIFE-SAVING videos. That is all totally free. Become aware of ways to be and remain safe in the home and on the go. And be sure that you have a PERS – Personal Emergency Response System for you and, or your parent. (Later I’ll describe why and how these units are not just for seniors).

Like all things, technology has improved in this personal safety industry; for instance, the unit that used to sit on the counter is now about the size of the palm of your hand and “finds” you using GPS anywhere you are in the USA; even the world. The response time and overall client assistance have improved; especially through one company, ECG.

As I mentioned, I loved doing installs for my first venture but when the company insisted on a different and more cumbersome, time-consuming routine in getting the paperwork to me, I got frustrated and quit. I still had clients calling me for years and I would help them as best I could and give them the number of the company for further help. Now that company is not even in business!

I kept busy with my other entrepreneurial pursuits but when I saw the opportunity to partner* with Electronic Caregiver (ECG) I was totally thrilled. Visiting the corporate office in Las Cruces New Mexico, seeing what they offer and how they do what they do with such high integrity, and being trained by a company that is the fastest-growing company of its kind (in the world), I could not be happier. I knew I was in the right place. And, with my experience and knowledge of ten years in the field of helping caregivers and senior subscribers, I knew I must write this. 


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