Federal Minister for Communications, Malcolm Turnbull, and the NBN Co have unveiled a register intended to assist in the migration of medical alarm devices to the National Broadband Network (NBN).
The launch took place at a community event in Kiama, NSW and coincides with NSW Seniors Week.
The Medical Alarm Register precedes the disconnection of copper phone lines from May 23 in the first 15 NBN fixed line communities in Tasmania, Victoria, NSW, Queensland and SA; some services from TransACT, OptiComm and Telstra Velocity are excluded.
NBN Co said that by identifying those who have personal medical alerts and alarms, it can help facilitate the reception of appropriate assistance.
“NBN Co is committed to working with the medical alarm industry, retail telecommunications companies and Internet service providers (ISPs) as we work towards a smooth transition to the NBN for medical alarm users,” NBN Co chief communications officer, John Simon, said.
“The most important thing for residents and businesses to know is that the move to the NBN is not automatic. Residents and businesses relying on special equipment including medical and security alarms must contact their preferred service provider as soon as possible to make sure the device can continue to operate.”
NBN Co has also advised users of medical devices to confirm with alarm providers that the units are operational once the NBN has been installed.
Seniors Computers Clubs Association president, Nan Bosler, has urged those affected to register their medical alarms and place an order for an NBN service.
“It’s important those using a medical alarm register early and begin the process now to ensure they receive the assistance they require to make the switch,” Bosler said.
“I would also advise seniors to use this as an opportunity to get themselves online and experience the benefits of fast broadband.”