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I feel scammed by the Medtronic technology upgrade--not good for kids!

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by Wendyb, Sep 28, 2013.

  1. Wendyb

    Wendyb Approved members

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    I just received my email from Medtronic telling me that the guarantee that I had for my son's new pump will no longer be honored because the FDA has not approved the pump and sensors for children under 16. This was the entire reason that we upgraded to the Revel---because they were running this guarantee. I feel scammed. I am frustrated and angry at Medtronic for telling me this knowing that the FDA approval was only covering age 16 and up. Had I known this I would have waited to buy the new pump technology now. Nothing was wrong with our Paradigm pump---it was just out of warranty. What are others thinking of this announcement? Here it is in black and white:

    To the Parent/Guardian of ALEXANDER,

    Medtronic Diabetes announced today the U.S. Food and Drug Administration?s (FDA) approval of the MiniMed 530G? with Enlite?.

    When you purchased the MiniMed? Paradigm Real-Time Revel? system with Sof-sensor?, you enrolled in the New Technology Guarantee Program. For eligible participants, this program guaranteed an upgrade to our latest technology at no additional cost.

    At this time the FDA has approved the MiniMed 530G system with Enlite for persons with diabetes ages 16 and above. Our records indicate that your child is under the age of 16, and as a result we are unable to offer the MiniMed 530G system with Enlite under the New Technology Guarantee Program.

    We understand this is disappointing, and want to offer you guidance on additional actions you may take:

    1) Please have your child continue using the current MiniMed Paradigm Revel insulin pump and continuous glucose monitor.

    2) We will be conducting a clinical trial to seek FDA approval but this is a long process and will take time to complete. Rest assured we will contact you at that time.

    3) In the meantime, we encourage you to speak to your child?s healthcare provider if you have any questions about your child?s specific therapy needs.

    We value you as a customer and appreciate your commitment to Medtronic. Should you have any further questions, please call 1.800.646.4633, option 8, Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. Central Time.



    At your service,

    Medtronic Diabetes
     
  2. wearingtaci

    wearingtaci Approved members

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    Whoa,that is messed up. I am so sorry
     
  3. Mish

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    I've never heard of that upgrade program before (never was offered to us). I think, honestly, that IF the technology is something that your doctor deems needed, then you'll be able to get your insurance to pay for a new pump, regardless of what Minimed says.
     
  4. MomofSweetOne

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    What would happen if you presented Medtronic with a letter of medical necessity from your endo for an upgrade? They can't market to you since your child is under the age, but so many of our kids are wearing devices not yet approved for kids because of letters of medical necessity. I wouldn't roll over and accept this without doing whatever hoops you can jump through if you bought wanting the 530G.

    I would be livid that they didn't make those details clear at the time. If you hadn't bought that pump, you could be getting the 530G without hassle now. Sometimes I'm really beginning to wonder about the Medtronic's corporation and the way they treat their customers. If the MySentry had been reasonably priced (like $100 for the baby monitor it is) to correct the volume problem, we would have never switched to Dexcom. As it is, I don't see us switching back to their CGM even with Enlite's release. Now we know how annoying their CGM is compared to Dexcom, that it quits reading if in "need" of a calibration, that it doesn't read far. Today my daughter's receiver was downstairs and woke both of us from naps even though we weren't anywhere near it. That is better than alarms that can't be heard and suspension of insulin. Don't get me wrong; I'd love low glucose suspend but first I want alarms that can be heard so that we don't get to the point of needing insulin suspended. KWIM?
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2013
  5. Ndiggs

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    Our Rep just texted me back to say we will be covered with a Letter of Medical Necessity so I think we should all still be good, but we will see what happens as this moves forward.
     
  6. Momontherun

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    Good to hear. Let us know how it goes. I am hoping a letter of medical necessity will help my son trial and get the new technology.
     
  7. Wendyb

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    I hope this means that if a letter of necessity is written by the ped endo that the guarantee will be honored. I would not feel right having my insurance company pay for another pump when we just received the Revel less than 6 mos ago. I have not even opened the transmitter box that we were sent because we were only interested in the enlite transmitter and sensors. I returned the 3 boxes of sensors that came with the transmitter and my insurance company has yet to be reimbursed. I need to make sure this happens.
     
  8. Ndiggs

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    as a follow up, or rep was at a JDRF walk today with our Endo, and our endo is sending out the new script on Monday, so hopefully I will know more on how it is going to work by Monday Afternoon or Tuesday
     
  9. hawkeyegirl

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    I don't really understand this. The "New Technology Guarantee Program" is what Medtronic promised its current patients so that you could trade in your old pump for no charge, right? Are they saying that no one under 16 can get a 530g, or that they just can't get it free? (And I'm pretty sure that they're just saying that they can't get it free. Pumps aren't FDA approved for very small children and endos prescribe them off-label all the time.) So why would the FDA care whether insurance pays for it or you get it for free?

    In other words, what on earth would a letter of medical necessity have to do with getting the new pump for free?
     
  10. mom2ejca

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    More smoke and mirrors on Minimed's part:rolleyes:

    I was told that anyone purchasing a Revel after March 1 (not totally sure about this date, but I think it's the one our endo threw out there) would be able to upgrade to the new pump at no cost, because it was so close to being approved. The MM rep that kept calling me because we were out of warranty, also talked about the Technology Guarantee Program when I mentioned that we were waiting for the new pump and sensors (there was more to our waiting than that, but that was none of his business:D)

    MM is now saying that if you are under 16, the Technology Guarantee doesn't apply to you until the pump is approved for pediatric use. I doubt a letter of medical necessity is going to sway MM, but it could be used to get insurance to cover the new pump before the end of the warranty period.

    Whoever came up with this mess at Minimed isn't very bright, they've been touting this Tech Guarantee for months and then yanked it for a subset of their patients that they promised it to. That's going to tick a lot of people off, I know I would be beyond livid had we stayed with Minimed and then received the email that the OP received.

    Our T:slim just arrived and I'm REALLY hoping that we can make Apidra work. Minimed was my fallback plan, but this fiasco makes me think that going back to Humalog would be a better idea.
     
  11. hawkeyegirl

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    I cannot tell you how mad I would be if we had stayed with Medtronic. Jack's MM pump died out of warranty due to water damage back in late May/early June, and I had to make a very quick decision. If I had had insurance pay for a new Revel based on MM's promise that I could upgrade to the 530 when it came out and I then got this letter...I would have gone ballistic on them. And I'm sure our insurance would have been really freaking happy to spend $6,000 on a new pump for us in June and another $6,000 in September. Hmmmm, let's see...who benefits in that scenerio? :rolleyes:

    And again, I just don't get it. I'm pretty sure their prior pumps were not approved for kids below a certain age, and I've never heard of anyone having issues with their upgrade program. So basically, WTF???
     
  12. mom2ejca

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    I've been trying to remember if the Revel was approved for pediatric use when it first came out, because we upgraded right away without any problems.

    I'm really curious to see how it plays out for Ndiggs. It just makes no sense to send out an email like the OP received, but then allow people to upgrade at no cost if they have a letter from their endo. For crying out loud, just tell people what they have to do to qualify.

    Let me tell you, if I had to get my insurance company to cover a second pump within six months, it certainly wouldn't be a Minimed:mad:
     
  13. Ndiggs

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    Ok so I had a nice long chat with our Rep today, and he basically told me that the FDA is requiring that Medtronic send out that email and letter as part of the approval to ensure that they are not marketing to the under 16 crowd, just like Dex cannot.

    Currently they are allowing pathway upgrades for under 16 for $399, and enlites at no charge as they will work with the reveal with a letter of medical necessary. Currently Medtronic legal is working though how they can honor the Tech upgrade for under 16 for no charge and keep the FDA happy, he was hoping to have more for me by Wed or Thursday when they have a new conference call.

    More as I know more
     
  14. Ndiggs

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    Ok Latest update, just talked to Dr's office, who talked to medtronic and was on a regional call this afternoon. Tech Upgrade WILL be honored for under 16. Heres the catch, its not automatic.

    Medtronic legally can't come to us, so you have to call your Doc, have them send in the new script, and Bob's your uncle. More details will flow out soon I think but that is what we are hearing here.

    Planing to ship by December for all upgrades is what they told me.

    More as I hear it.

    Nick
     
  15. Momontherun

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    My son endo wants to wait till the first of the year and write a letter for medical necessity. The provider feels insurance won't approve 2 pumps in one year Even if there is a "free upgrade". The revel that was purchased in March and then 6 months later the 530g. We are going to let the initial wave of new 530g be sent out and see how it goes.
     
  16. Ndiggs

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    have your Dr. check with the rep, should not even have to touch the Insurance at all, it is all internal with Medtronic, just needs the new script as it is a different device

    May not matter much anyway if they are talking about shipping upgrades in December though
     
  17. ecs1516

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    Medtronic age requirement for 16 and up is no different than this

    The Dexcom G4 Continuous Glucose Monitoring System is a glucose-monitoring device indicated for detecting trends and tracking patterns in persons (age 18 and older) with diabetes.

    A letter from endo gets patients younger than 18 the Dexcom just as it would the new Medtronic pump.
     
  18. hawkeyegirl

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    Right, but it wouldn't get insurance to pay for a new one, in-warranty.
     
  19. ecs1516

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    Right, but I thought if someone had signed up for the upgrade program then you just pay the upgrade. Maybe I am just thinking about the upgrade program.

    I have had insurance buy new pumps for new features even when we were still in warranty ,but may depend on insurance.
     
  20. hawkeyegirl

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    The letter that MM sent out made it sound like the "New Technology Upgrade Program" that they had been promising current pumpers for a year (a free upgrade, essentially if you bought the Revel in the last year) would not apply to users under age 16. That would be a crock. It now sounds like they will honor that free upgrade promise, but everything is still a bit up in the air.

    Again, this is all really weird, because I've never heard of them limiting their upgrade programs to users who meet the FDA approval age.
     

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