Seniors Alert Scheme
Seniors Alert Grants available for over 65's
The Seniors Alert Scheme (SAS) is a government grant-aided scheme which covers the cost of a telecare system, for people aged 65 and over. The scheme covers the cost of getting a socially monitored pendant alarm system installed in your home, and also covers the cost of the first years 24-hour monitoring. Tens of thousands of people in Ireland, have already availed of the monitored alarm scheme. The Seniors Alert Scheme is administered by semi-state body Pobal. Pobal do not however deal with individual applications directly, but accept the SAS applications for monitored alarms from local community and voluntary groups. To find out where your local group is based, you can find up to date listings on Pobal's website or by emailing Pobal at firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, you can contact TASK and we will signpost you to a local community group that can make the application on your behalf.
SENIOR ALERT SCHEME (FAQ's)
Q. Who is eligible to apply for a Seniors Alert Scheme alarm?
Under the scheme, people aged 65 years or older are eligible to apply for a monitored alarm. The previous requirement that a person must be living alone, was removed from the current scheme.
Q. How do I apply for a grant-aided Seniors Alert Scheme alarm?
Seniors Alert applications are submitted by local community and voluntary groups on behalf of people in their local area. To find out where your local group is based, you can visit Pobal's website or by emailing Pobal at email@example.com. Alternatively, you can contact TASK and we will signpost you to a local community group, that can make the application on your behalf.
Q. Under the Seniors Alert Scheme, what exactly is grant-aided?
If your application is successful under the Seniors Alert Scheme, the grant funding will cover the cost of a monitored 'telecare' alarm. This will consist of a telecare base unit and pendant button (which can also be worn as a wristband). The cost includes full installation of the system in your home. Even if you do not have a home phone-line a GSM monitrored alarm can be funded. The cost of your first years 24-hour monitoring is also covered by the scheme.
Q. I have no home phone-line, can I still get a SAS funded monitored alarm?
Yes, even if you have no phone-line at home, a GSM alarm with SIM card can be provided under the Seniors Alert Scheme. This type of telecare alarm works in much the same way as a monitored landline or broadband telecare alarm and will get help to you when you need it most.
Q. What happens if a phone network goes down, and I am relying on a GSM alarm (with SIM card) as a telecare system, for my home with no landline?
As network outages do happen for various reasons, on all mobile phone networks (e.g. Three eirMobile or Vodaphone). TASK protects you by using a 'multi-network' SIM that attaches to the strongest mobile phone network. This significantly reduces the possibility of a call failing to reach the monitoring centre in the event of a network outage, or because of poor coverage. With TASK, if one network is down, the SIM automatically connects to the strongest alternative network.
Q. How much does monitoring cost, after the first year?
After the first year TASK charge €66 for monitoring, other telecare providers' charges vary. If you want TASK to monitor your alarm in the first or subsequent years, please contact us as this is usually possible, regardless of the type of telecare system in your home.
Q. Do the SAS grants have to be repaid?
No. The government grants for monitored alarms do not have to be repaid.
Q. How long is the Seniors Alert Scheme (SAS) equipment warranty?
Seniors Alert Scheme Warranty for SAS equipment is a minimum of 5 years. With TASK this automatically extended to the lifetime of your unit so long as we are monitoring and you were the original owner of the SAS equipment. This means with TASK, your telecare system is future-proofed, even after the Seniors Alert Scheme minimum warranty period.
Q. How long before I receive my monitored pendant alarm system?
Once your Seniors Alert Scheme application has been approved by Pobal, Pobal will inform the group that submitted your SAS application. The registered group will then contact a monitored alarm supplier to arrange the installation of your system. The monitored alarm supplier must install the alarm within ten days of receiving the order, unless otherwise agreed with you. The alarms can be fast-tracked in emergency cases to three days from when the monitored alarm supplier receives notification of your approval, from the community group that submitted your application.
Q. Can we have two pendant alarm buttons for our home, both funded under the SAS?
Yes, if you are both over 65, it is possible to receive two funded alarm buttons under the scheme. Both pendant buttons will connect to the one base unit in your home. If TASK is your monitoring provider, we will monitor the second pendant alarm AND any other telecare equipment you buy outside of the scheme, completely free of charge, so long as it’s connected to the same telecare system. Most other companies charge for each additional device monitored, so also check this before choosing your 24-hour monitoring provider.
Q. Who owns the monitored alarm in my home?
The monitored alarm remains the property of the registered community group that made the application to Pobal under the Seniors Alert Scheme.
Q. If I do not want to keep the alarm equipment, to whom do I return it?
Seniors Alert Scheme equipment remains the property of the community group which submitted the SAS grant application on your behalf. The equipment must be returned to the community group if you no longer need it. Contact them to arrange collection as each group will have a different policy about how equipment is returned. You should also cancel any monitoring contracts with your monitored supplier to ensure you are not invoiced unnecessarily.
Q. I have a community group and would like to submit applications for my local area. What do I need to do?
To submit SAS applications for your local area, your group must be a not-for-profit organisation, and registered with Pobal. As one of the scheme's objectives is to encourage community support for vulnerable older in the local area, to register with Pobal, you should be able to provide evidence of previously supporting or providing services to older or vulnerable people in your community. Your organisation can apply to be a registered group online at https://sas.pobal.ie. If sucessful, you will be able to apply for Seniors Alert Scheme grants for people in your local area.
Q. Where can I get further details about the Seniors Alert Scheme?
Give us a call if you want further details about the Seniors Alert Scheme. Pobal's website also contains further details about the monitored alarm scheme. Your local community or voluntary group should also be able to provide you with detailed information. Or visit Ireland's online telecare magazine Telecare.ie which is sponsored by TASK, to find more details about pendant alarms, telecare and the Seniors Alert Scheme.