FAQs

Take a look at some of our most common frequently asked questions about our  24 hour monitoring and responding service.

About HEARS

Where are you based?

We are based at the Ipswich Borough Council Headquarters at Grafton House, 15-17 Russell Road, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP1 2DE.

What HEARS services are available?

Monitoring Only

If you activate the alarm the 24-hour control team will be called to assess your situation and establish what help is needed.

Where necessary, we will alert your nominated contact(s), GP or the emergency services to come and assist you.

Please note that HEARS Responders DO NOT attend your home for monitoring only.

Find out more.

Monitoring & Responding

If you activate the alarm the 24-hour control team will be called to assess your situation and establish what help is needed.

Where necessary, we will alert your nominated contact(s), dispatch our responding team or call the emergency services.

Find out more.

Are the services available at all times?

We offer a 24-hour service 365 days a year. We are available to you at any time of the day or night.

Can more than one person at the same property receive the HEARS service?

Yes, provided that both customers are registered with HEARS (Duo package).

Are all the HEARS responders first aid trained?

Yes, they are also trained in manual handling (moving people safely).

What do the HEARS responders do if they attend?

– The HEARS Responders will carry out an initial assessment and provide any relevant first aid including passive lifting or manual handling.

– Where necessary, they will call the emergency services followed by your nominated contacts. Responders will then complete an incident report which can be referred to other agencies if appropriate.

– Responders are only accessible with the Monitoring & Responding service.

What do the HEARS responders not do?

Our HEARS responders will not attend your property if the issue is not a genuine emergency and will not:

 

  • Help with your routine care or any nursing matters, this includes toileting, personal care, putting to or getting out of bed etc.
  • Administer drugs, medication or deal routinely with dressings.
  • Carry out any household chores, this also consists of posting letters or collecting prescriptions.
  • Prepare any meals or refreshments.
  • Complete any type of documentation on your behalf
  • Attend to any electrical problems such as resetting trip switches, change light bulbs etc.

What if I want to cancel the HEARS service?

If you want to end your agreement you will need to notify the HEARS service. This can be done through:

 

Add-ons

What is a Key Safe Box?

A Key Safe Box is a simple way to keep your door keys secure should they be needed in an emergency. It is fitted to an external wall and has a panel on the front used for entering a unique code.

Is a Key Safe Box mandatory?

Only for the following services:

– Monitoring & Responding service

– Smoke Detector (add-on)

What are the advantages of a Key Safe Box and are they safe?

Key Safe Boxes enable your nominated contacts, our HEARS Responders or the emergency services to go straight to your property and gain access in an emergency without delay. The Key Safe Box can only be opened by someone who knows the unique code.

Where can I purchase a Key Safe Box?

You can purchase a Key Safe Box direct from the HEARS service for a one-off charge* or you can buy the box privately and arrange for this to be installed yourself.

*All Key Safe Boxes fitted by HEARS will become your property following installation.

Smoke Detector

A Smoke Detector can be linked to the HEARS alarm unit to provide additional reassurance and protection. It will activate and sound within your home and automatically alert the 24-hour control team that smoke has been detected. The control team will call the Fire Service, protecting you and your property.

Falls Detector

A Falls Detector is activated by the velocity and acceleration by a customer’s fall. It is therefore important to note that a Falls Detector will NOT detect all types of falls i.e. slipping from a chair.

If you apply for this add-on service, HEARS will carry out an full assessment of your needs to establish whether you meet the requirements.

Using a HEARS alarm

When can I activate my alarm?

If you have fallen, are injured or unwell please activate the alarm. We do not offer a service for personal care or provide meals.

What happens when I push my mobile button?

The call will immediately go through to our 24-hour control team.  An operator will try and talk to you through the powerful loud speaker on the alarm unit. They will assess your situation and get you the help that you need.

Depending on what service you have they will either call your nominated contacts (friends, family or neighbours) or send a responder straight to your home.

What happens if I accidentally press my mobile button?

Do not worry, the alarm will activate and the 24-hour control team will ask if you are okay. Please just advise us that it was a false alarm.

What happens if I press my mobile button and the control team cannot hear me?

Whether you are on the Monitoring Only or Monitoring & Responding service, if no voice contact is made the 24-hour control team will attempt to call you on the telephone. If there is no answer then:

– Monitoring Only: one of your nominated contacts will be called

– Monitoring & Responding: HEARS Responders will attend your home to check you are okay.

Will the alarm still work in the event of a power cut?

Yes there is a battery back up in the alarm unit.

If my alarm stops working, what should I do?

Do not worry, phone the 24-hour control team straight away on (01473) 433444 and we will either try to resolve it over the phone or if not, the HEARS Responders will come out to you.

Can I wear my mobile button in the shower or bath?

The mobile button is water resistant but not waterproof (i.e. it must not be submerged in water).

What is a test call?

A test call is where the mobile button is pressed once every 1-2 weeks to check the alarm and make sure all equipment it is working efficiently.

Before installing a HEARS alarm

What do I need before a HEARS alarm can be installed?

All you need is:

– A telephone socket

– A connected telephone line

– A power socket positioned within 1.8 metres (6 feet) from the telephone socket

It is your responsibility to ensure that the telephone line, telephone socket and power socket are working properly at all times. If they are not then you must have them repaired or replaced.

Do I have to install the HEARS equipment myself?

No, we have trained HEARS responders who will install the equipment for you at your property and explain how it works. It may be useful to have a family member or one of your nominated contacts present at the installation.

How do I arrange my HEARS installation?

You can contact the HEARS service by:

Using the online ‘Contact Us’ form

– Call the HEARS service on (01473) 433236

We can arrange an appointment at a time to suit you. We can do morning or afternoon appointments during the week or at weekends.

What do I need to provide regarding my state of health?

HEARS require you to provide full medical details of every illness and disability you suffer from.

Whilst receiving the HEARS service you must update HEARS immediately of any changes to your health.

HEARS charges

How do I pay for the HEARS service?

Payment is made via Direct Debit on the 1st of every month. The first payment will also include the installation cost and the Key Safe Box cost (if applicable).

What is the term/cancellation period of the contract?

There is no minimum contract length for the HEARS service.

What happens if I lose or damage any HEARS equipment?

If you report any lost or damaged equipment, the HEARS service will replace this for a one-off charge of:

– Mobile Button: £49.99

– Falls Detector: £99.99

– Smoke Detector: £49.99

– Alarm Unit: £99.99

Our Services

Now you know more about HEARS, take a look at what services we offer.

Monitoring Only

If you activate your alarm we will call one of your nominated contacts immediately. If we can’t get through to them we will call the emergency services.

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Monitoring & Responding

If you activate your alarm our 24-hour control team will immediately assess your situation and either dispatch our responding team or call the emergency services.

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Additional Services

We offer a variety of extra products and services to compliment our key packages including Key Safe Boxes, Smoke Detectors and Falls Detectors.

We're here to help, call 01473 433236 or enquire online

We're here to help, call 01473 433236 or enquire online