Personal Response Systems

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RAP Schedule Number

AA05 Monitored Personal Response Systems (PRS) including Mobile Personal Emergency Response Systems (MPERS) [refer to RAP Schedule Sub Category: Alarm System / Communication Appliances / Assistive Listening Devices]

Definition

Personal Response Systems allow entitled persons to seek assistance quickly in an emergency.

DVA defines Personal Response systems as being either:

  1. Monitored Personal Response Systems (PRS): These devices involve installation of a base unit in the client’s home. The user wears a device to activate the system, which has a limited range of operation from the base unit.
  2. Monitored Mobile Personal Emergency Response Systems (MPERS) are designed for seeking assistance beyond the boundary of the home by working through the mobile phone network. They also require a device to be worn to activate the system.

Both systems are monitored on a 24/7 basis by an emergency response service. The devices may be pendants worn around the neck, on a keyring or belt, or a device worn on the wrist. Features may include falls detection or GPS location.

NOTE: Mobile phones, portable cordless phones and intercoms are not supplied by DVA as Personal Response Systems.

Eligibility


The DVA client must have a clinical need for a PRS/MPERS unit and a:

  • Gold Card; or
  • White Card with an accepted condition relating to the clinical need for the equipment.

The Department does not supply Personal Response Systems to persons who live in Residential Aged Care.

Prescribing

Assessing health provider

Personal Response Systems and Mobile Personal Emergency Response Systems must be prescribed by a suitably qualified assessing health provider as follows:

  • Occupational Therapist (OT)
  • Registered Nurse (RN)
  • Physiotherapist (Physio)

General Practitioners (GP) and Specialists (S) are not suitable prescribers due to the requirement for an in-home assessment.

Prior approval

Prior approval is not required for contracted items

Prior approval is required for the supply of non-contracted items. DVA will only consider non-contracted items in exceptional circumstances when an eligible client’s clinical need cannot be met by contracted items. The assessing health provider must explain the clinical reasons for the supply of non-contracted items in the D9199 Assessment Form for the supply of a Personal Response System.

Deciding on the most appropriate item

A suitably qualified and experienced health provider must determine the clinical need.

Social Criteria

For PRS:

  • The client lives alone
  • The client does not live alone, but his/her carer is unable to provide or obtain assistance (e.g. due to dementia, due to being away from the home for extended periods, etc).

For MPERS:

  • This person mobilises outdoors unaccompanied or the person they mobilise with would be unable to obtain emergency assistance.

Clinical Criteria

The client must meet one or more of the following criteria prior to the provision of a personal response system:

  • The client has a significant risk of medical emergencies
  • The client has a recent history (within the past 12 months) of falls. (The falls must have been investigated and the cause of the falls eliminated where possible. Therefore personal response systems should only be considered if there is a continued risk of falls).
  • The client displays a number of factors that would put them at high risk of a fall. (Risk factors include significant visual impairment, significant balance and mobility deficits).

Other factors for consideration

Health providers should conduct an in-home assessment and also consider the following:

  • Willingness to wear the device 24 hours a day.
  • Willingness and physical and cognitive ability to activate the device and conduct monthly testing where required.
  • Proposed purpose of device e.g. community mobility, emergency assistance at home.
  • Whether the device will work in the proposed location e.g. some MPERS devices may not reliably activate indoors.
  • Medical contra-indications e.g. if the DVA client has a pacemaker (PPM) or deep brain stimulator (DBS) this may affect device selection.
  • If falls detection is required, prescribers should check technical specifications to determine best device for activation (e.g. pendant versus wrist device).
Request for item
  1. An in-home assessment must be conducted by a suitably qualified assessing health provider to determine the clinical need and the most suitable system and activation device.
  2. The assessing health provider should complete the D9199 Assessment Form for the supply of a Personal Response System and forward it to one of the contracted suppliers detailed on the last page of the form.

Additional information

Installation and monthly testing The supplier will provide installation, instructions and training in the device at the time of the initial installation. Follow up support and emergency relocations can be undertaken face to face or via telephone support as required.
Ancillary Equipment

AA05 Key safes/lock boxes

Key safes / lock boxes are installed to enable emergency services to access the client’s home:

  • where a client is at high risk of a medical emergency and
  • lives alone or
  • does not have assistance within the home.

Please note key safes/ lock boxes may only be prescribed as part of a request for a PRS/MPERS unit.

Key safes/lock boxes are not provided as a standalone item. A key safe/lock box may subsequently be prescribed for a client who already has an existing DVA funded PRS/MPERS device.

Ancillary equipment to the PRS System for clients with reduced cognition may include:

BF08 Sound and Movement Monitors

These aids support safety in the home. Lack of movement can trigger an alert. Includes door and room monitors.

BF09 Exit Reminder

These aids support safety in the home by triggering an alert for movement outside a designated area. For example, infrared motion detection.

BF12 Telecare (Tracking) Devices

These aids use satellite technology to locate a person who may have become disoriented and unable to navigate their way home or has wandered from their own familiar environment. Tracking devices can improve a person’s independence and support the carer, however the assessing health provider needs to evaluate risks associated with wandering and the need for personal freedom and the right to privacy. For tracking devices, a record of consent by the client or Enduring Power of Attorney (Medical Treatment) is necessary.

Repairs and Maintenance RAP Item AA15 Alarm System / Communication Appliances / Assistive Listening Devices – Maintenance and Repairs should be provided by the contracted supplier who supplied the PRS / MPERS / Key safe / lock box where possible.
Transfer to partner/spouse DVA may transfer devices and equipment to an eligible surviving partner or spouse following an assessment and request by an appropriate assessing health provider.
Health Provider Hotline 1800 550 457
Health Providers can contact DVA for any enquiries by calling the Provider Hotline: (Please press Option 1 when prompted for RAP).
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