By Candace Barrick, Becketwood Member
When I was getting ready to jump out of a plane, my tandem sky-diving partner asked if I wanted to pull the parachute cord or if I wanted him to do it.
The pull cords here at Becketwood might seem to some as a matter of life or death for their well-being. In truth, pull cords give a false sense of security. The main reason is that they do not always work and the system is so old, it cannot be repaired. The parts are no longer available.
If you pull the cord in a place in your unit where there is no phone, the security person cannot talk to you to assess your situation. If the security person runs to your unit to determine if you need an ambulance, precious minutes are lost before the ambulance arrives.
If you pull the cord while the security staff is responding to another emergency, it might take some time before they can get to you. Again, precious minutes are lost. If you fall where there is no phone and no pull cord you might not receive help quickly.
(One Becketwood Member fell in a recycling room and broke her hip. She yelled for help until someone heard her and called for help. There was no pull cord or phone available.)
The best way to get help quickly for a serious emergency is to call 911 from your own phone. If you keep a cellphone with you it will allow you to call 911 from everywhere there is service.
In a situation where you don't need a 911 emergency response, it would be best if you can get the help you need from the appropriate person in a timely manner.
There are many alternative devices that will notify emergencies services or your personal contacts for an emergency. Those services are purchased at your own cost and based on your personal needs.
Are you someone who already has the medical emergency alert device that suits your needs?
Are you someone who thinks you are capable of making your own decision?
Are you someone who has family or friends or caregivers capable of helping you with that decision?
Are you someone who needs help making a decision and don't know where to start? If you are in this group, you may contact Deb Rodmyre, Member Services Coordinator. She will link you with services that could help you decide.