Wednesday, June 10, 2009

How a Ping-Pong ball feels.

My fabulous morning (please note the sarcasm) was spent ping-ponging between phone calls to Medronic Minimed and my endo's office. But let's start at the beginning.

I opened my last box of infusion sets on May 24th. Like a good little diabetic, I got on-line and ordered my new supplies from Minimed.

Then I waited. And waited. And then I waited some more. The happy little e-mail letting me know my supplies had shipped was not in my in-box. After listening to me bitch worry, Pea called Minimed on Sunday and used the automated system to check my order status. It said my supplies would ship yesterday.

This morning, there still was no happy "your supplies are on their way" e-mail in my in-box. I have only two infusion sets left, so I called Minimed again. The automated system still said my order was processing and would be shipped . . . yesterday. I decided to talk to a live person to confirm that it had been sent.

Good thing I did. My order has not shipped yet. Minimed said they are waiting on a new prescription from my endo's office. They rattled off a list of dates over the past 2 1/2 weeks on which they talked to / faxed / called my endo's office.

Next up, I called my endo. My one and only complaint with his office is that a real person doesn't answer the phone. I worked my way through the automated menu and left a message asking what the status of my refill prescription was and if there was anything they needed from me. A few minutes later, the nurse called back and let me know that Minimed had been faxing the wrong request to them. It had all been straightened out and the refill order was faxed to Minimed yesterday.

Okay. I hung up and immediately called Minimed back. Worked my way though their automated system (again) and reached a real person. Explained the problem (again) and the latest status from my endo's office. The nice lady told me any fax received yesterday is in another department with hundreds of other faxes and could take a day or two to be sorted and processed. *sigh*

Is it just me, or is this whole situation really WRONG? If my prescription had expired and needed to be updated, why didn't Minimed let me know when I placed my order?  I certainly would have called my endo right away to get the paperwork they needed.  In the 2 1/2 weeks I've been waiting, they couldn't give me a status update? And now it will be a couple more days before my fax gets to the right department so my order can be processed and shipped?

I have two sites left. What happens if I have a repeat of Saturday and my site fails and needs to be changed out early? What if I have a repeat of two weeks ago and accidentally yank my site out in the bathroom? Luckily, a wonderful D-Friend has my back and offered to loan me a couple of spares if I need them. But how many diabetics have friends that use the same supplies and can help if an emergency arises?

I'm sorry, but I think this whole situation could have been handled much better. And when it's supplies that your life depends on, it absolutely should be.


  1. Like it isn't bad enough that we have to be on top of ourselves 24/7. Having to micromanage everyone and everything else is simply overkill. Why do we have to juggle 15 different tasks just to try to live a healthy life? It's just another thing that we have to deal with. There's managing Diabetes, and there's managing Diabetes. The uninformed don't understand the former, and have no idea of the latter.

    Go us.

  2. I wish diabetes supply prescriptions could be valid until they cure the damn disease.

    I totally get that annual scrips is a good motivator to get people in to the doc... but it's not like we no longer need this stuff just because it's been a year since a doc filled out a form!

  3. As we discussed on Twitter, I have a similar problem. I have an order that I placed over a week ago and is still "waiting for approval" or something like that. I probably would have been ok waiting until they arrived, but after I placed the order, I had 2 sets that went to crap and had to be I lost a week of cushion right there. I called earlier this week and asked if they could expedite the order, but never heard back. I called again today and got a more helpful person, but still no improvement on the date. I ended up paying a $15 shipping fee for them to overnight me some "free" samples. I know it's only 15 bucks, but to me, free means zero dollars.

    I like Kassie's idea. I'm pretty sure I'm going to need test strips and insulin next year, just like the past 17 years.

  4. Major suckage. Chris's comment really hits the nail on the head!

  5. Major suckage yo. And yeah, what Chris said.

    As much as health insurance would help me manage my diabetes So much better, uh, once again, glad I don't have to deal with it.

    Man, Karen. TOtally sucks. Stupid people suck. Not getting it really perturbs me. Both the Endo office and the manufacturer should KNOW BETTER. W t h.

    Hope you get what you NEED (Hello Endo and MiniMed -- NEED) soon!

    hee hee, wv: biasm
    Uh, I think there is a certain level of biasm that goes along with working in an Endo office and a pump manufacturers office. Uh, yea. Stop that, ok, like Now. Thx.

  6. Hi Karen,
    Wow, tough couple of weeks indeed. I'm sorry for your hassle, and although that hasn't happened to me specifically, it does quite often at the drug store (where I refill everything BUT the pump supplies).

    As fas as Medtronic goes, here's my suggestions:
    1. NEVER use the automated line. I never have, and have never had a problem. Their customer service is incredible (I've found), and they'll bend over backwards to help you.

    2. ANY TIME you have an infusion set that fails (like I just did last night), CALL THEM. Further, tell them what is happening and that you have 2 sets left. I GUARANTEE the'll OVERNIGHT at LEAST 2 more. They;ve done it for me, and are happy to do it. They key here is, call the 24 hour help line, not the order dept.

    It will take some time to recap your story, but I feel sure they'll have your new sets there by FRIDAY MORNIING!!

    3. Call your Medtronic rep. Mine is incredible, and I bet yours is as well. Tell them what's going on, and I feel confident they'll also advocate on your behalf. Having someone on the 'inside' ensures you've got more than one option. Also, they have extra sets to give you.

    4. Finally, if you need some I would gladly fed ex some out to you. I know the panic of opening your 'pump supplies' counter door and seeing virtually nothing. Worse than an empty 'fridge!

    Send me an email if you're interested in that.

    It's going to be all right!

  7. Karen, sorry about this nasty situation & I would take notice of James's comments (good points James). I have had something similar in the past & my reaction is to used controlled anger, which comes of sounding like a strict controlling headmistress (I demand to have this resolved now by someone), although this has worked for me, not recomended!

  8. Karen-

    I feel your frustrating. I have been there a few times. I am a little late at replying. Did you get taken care of?


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