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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. ecs1516

    ecs1516 Approved members

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    Just got off the phone with my Medtronic person. They to say that because of FDA. Just need a letter from doc. Getting a trial on Enlite setup right now.
    They can't say much right now over the main phone lines because of FDA and being recorded. They are currently have trials on small children working on approval.
     
  2. kyles_mom

    kyles_mom Approved members

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    Kyle's pump has been out of warranty since April, so I've been toying with the idea of upgrading. Minimed contacted me a few months ago (presumably because the warranty was up) and tried to talk me into upgrading with this 'warranty program'. I was assured we would be able to upgrade at the time something better came along, but still decided to wait because his current pump is fine. He doesn't like to use the CGMS though and that's what caught my eye about this new one...having it all in one, longer site life etc......plus of course the insulin shut off feature. I called today to see about upgrading, and was told the same - that because he's under 16 they couldn't do it. We have an endo appt on the 22nd and I'll talk to his dr then about getting a letter of necessity. I really think that it's wrong though, the way Minimed touted this whole upgrade program, when they can't follow through. It seems to me that the whole age issue has been there all along regarding kids and pumps (what's up with that archaic thinking anyway?), and someone should have verified all of this before they even put it out there.
     
  3. moco89

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    Medtronic may be committing both consumer and insurance fraud (I do not know the laws, though), with the CGM and pump "bundling issue", even when private insurance and the consumer are paying for this, with coverage. This is certainly unethical of them, especially when a MEDICAL DOCTOR recommends therapies and prescribes NEEDED devices. The doctor and the insurance company should get the final say, in this circumstance, after a treatment approach has been agreed upon with the patient. If this is not "medically necessary"--as determined by your endocrinologist, this probably is fraud, but keep in mind I am no lawyer.

    http://www.medicare.gov/Publications/Pubs/NonPdf/ConsumerFraud_5.asp

    Unscrupulous Suppliers May:

    * Provide more expensive equipment than medically necessary (sometimes a problem with motorized and non-motorized wheelchairs and manual and electric beds),

    Wikipedia Definition of Insurance Fraud:

    Insurance fraud occurs when any act is committed with the intent to fraudulently obtain some benefit or advantage to which they are not otherwise entitled (I believe that means "medically necessary") or someone knowingly denies some benefit that is due and to which someone is entitled.

    Wikipedia Definition of Medical Necessity ("Medically Necessary"):

    Medical necessity is a United States legal doctrine, related to activities which may be justified as reasonable, necessary, and/or appropriate, based on evidence-based clinical standards of care.

    (Probably determined by MEDICAL DOCTORS and ultimately insurance companies, NOT medical device manufacturers.)

    I (think) you can report it here, to the FDA, which is going to the horse's mouth since Medtronic is ultra-defensive with FDA relations. (http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/email/oc/oci/contact.cfm) Another option is your state's attorney general's office.

    I hope this helps.
     
  4. MHoskins2179

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    I wrote a blog post today over on D'Mine about this whole issue with what Medtronic's been saying about their new device. Bottom line of what I wrote: Color me excited about the 530G, but VERY disappointed in the company.

    If I could still buy the pump itself, I might. But since that's not an option now for those of us with G4s, I guess MedT loses me entirely as a customer. Oh well.

    Hopefully other pump companies don't follow suit, when they start integrating with G4.
     
  5. Mish

    Mish Approved members

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    That's a good article. This part is helpful to many of us here, at least:

    "... A third rep gave the same answer about no stand-alone pump orders, and when pressed, explained that the company?s now restricting sales of Revels to type 2s, those type 1s with government insurance like military, Medicare and Medicaid, and of course those 16 and younger since the new 530G isn?t pediatric-approved."
     
  6. Beach bum

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    That was a very good piece.
    I hate the fact that if an adult was to go with them, they are forced to go integrated. We wouldn't be able to since we'd be considered pediatric. LOL, we wouldn't go with MM now anyways as I'm not to thrilled with how they are handling themselves with this pump release. I'm excited with what they are creating and all, but not with the way it's being promoted.
     
  7. hawkeyegirl

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    Thanks for that article, Mike.

    I read the other day that Dex and MM both have about a 50/50 share of the U.S. CGM market. Obviously, this is making MM nervous, so they decided to double down with the 530g and do what they can to lock their users into using the MM CGM. And then this "New Technology Guarantee" debacle. I would have been furious if I had been relying on a free upgrade to the 530g and had the rug pulled out from under me. MM knew full well that they had not submitted the pump for pediatric approval, but went on making promises like that to me and others whose Revels had gone out of warranty.

    After having been lied to for years about their product pipeline and timelines for new products, this is the straw that broke the camel's back for me. I have no regrets about using their pump and CGM for 5.5 years, but I'm glad we "broke up" when we did. And you know how at the end of relationships people tend to say, "It's not you, it's me?" Well, Medtronic, this time it's YOU.
     
  8. ecs1516

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    Just talked with our endo office and they ordered the new 530G for two of their ped patients. Under 16 but an endo can write the script for that.
     
  9. Danielle2008

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    I'm glad to hear with a Endo prescription they will honor the upgrade.

    As posted though...disappointed to read about the requirement to buy the system as a 'whole'.

    I upgraded to the new Revel earlier this year(pump was out of warranty, and decided to go forward anyway). I have never minded MM pumps. I researched like crazy before going forward, and decided the 'simplicity' of the MM was still appealing. I loved the Tslim, but United was still(and I think still not) covering it. Plus, after my first Omnipod experience with a new pump company, I wasn't ready to try it again with Tandem quite yet.

    Anyway, this WILL force me to change pump companies in four years. I won't leave my Dexcom. I am disappointed in that. I know many view Medtronic's pump as ancient compared to the newer ones...but I like it. That is why I chose it again earlier this year when I was up for a new one. I like having my insulin pump, and my CGMS...I like that they each serve a purpose, and I was able to pick each as an individual item to fit my needs.

    Unfortunately, they DON'T have a superior system compared to what else is available...so I don't know whatthey were thinking when they did this. If the CGMS was even comparable to the Dexcom I could understand the initial thought. However, it's not.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2013
  10. hawkeyegirl

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    There are a couple of things I miss about our old MM. The speed of reservoir changes, for one. I always liked our MM pump. Frankly, our switch to Tandem was as much out of spite as anything.
     
  11. Lee

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    Thank you Mike for your post - and I for one, am absolutely infuriated. My child cannot wear Minimed's CGM due to the metal (gold) that they use in the filament that stays under the skin. She has no problems with the G4, but try getting insurance to pay for two CGMS.

    Our ONLY option now to pump and CGM is to switch from a pump that has 8 years of loyalty behind it.

    From a purely organizational development side of the house (these are the things I geek out on), this is organizational suicide. I understand the strategy and the fact that they want to stop the G4 bleed, but they are also shooting themselves in the foot. These are two very different medical devices that perform two very different tasks. To shove a medical treatment forcibly down the throat of consumers is a ludicrous strategy. Not every adult wants to use a CGMS, yet they are being forced to. I foresee a mass exodus of loyal consumers. This will be people who cannot use the CGM, who do not want to use the CGM, and who just flat out do not like having their freewill and choice stripped away from them.

    Seriously - they took a population of consumers who would have been loyal to their pump for a LITERAL LIFETIME and blew them out of the water...

    Instead of force feeding a population of customers who may not be ready for the CGM, this offering should be the preferred configuration, even the recommended configuration, but not the ONLY configuration. Even if I can call and fight to get the Revel when our warranty is up in 6 months, due to my daughter's metal allergy, does not mean that I should HAVE to engage in a battle with customer service.

    So it looks like Bye Bye Minimed and hello T-Slim next year for us.
     
  12. moco89

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    With a doctor's note of medical necessity saying that the Medtronic CGM isn't suitable with the 530g (for whatever reason, such as accuracy) wouldn't it be fraud for Medtronic to bundle the pump and CGM in the first place?

    I mean if you gave the letter of medical necessity to the insurance company, I am sure that would cause a hardcore coverage dispute between Medtronic and private insurance in general, especially if it is a large insurer. Also, with a letter of medical necessity stating that "at this point of time, I am unsure of the reliability of the 530g technology and the low glucose suspend in this patient, but the patient may use this in the future" would likely be sufficient to justify the claim of getting the 530g. Getting the Revel is a ripoff for private insurance.

    Obviously do not do this if Medtronic is your first-choice pump, if you are already going to get the CGM. But if the pump is on the short-list, it may be worth doing so.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2013
  13. mom2ejca

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    Absolutely! We just switched to Tslim and Dex last week, partly out of curiosity and partly due to my irritation with Minimed (the company, not the pump). Going into the change we knew that Apidra could be a problem with the Tslim, but we would have MM to fallback on. Our 2nd day on the Tslim was a hot mess, and dd asked to have her MM back. Had this happened a few weeks ago, I would have had the Tslim packed up and a new MM on it's way to my door.

    Our insurance just payed for a Dexcom, and my child is under 16, so supposedly I should be able to get a stand alone Revel without any problem. Instead we're giving the Tslim another go today with Apidra and I'm picking up a bottle of Novolog at the pharmacy tomorrow. I never imagined anything, other than Apidra going off the market, would give me cause to switch back to Novolog.

    In my opinion, Medtronic has clearly demonstrated a lack of regard for it's customers wants and needs. Oh and let's not forget the whole lying about upgrades thing:mad: At this point, I'd rather go through changing insulin while dealing with a new pump/CGM (oh yeah, and puberty) than give MM my business.
     
  14. Beach bum

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    I know two adults who were considering obtaining/switching to MM and have jumped ship. One went with T-Slim, the other is still considering options. I know two kid pumpers whose parents pulled the plug on MM and are leaning towards T-Slim.

    Will be interesting to see what happens on their next earnings call...
     
  15. rachabetic

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    Yep, I completely agree. I have been getting fed up with Medtronic for a little while just because of them leading everyone on about when their next pump will be released, and of how great their next sensor will be. All after not changing anything with their CGM for years and years, and after hearing studies and feedback from people already using it saying there wasn't much difference in accuracy.

    In June, after almost 11 years with minimed, I left and switched to Tandem. I was nervous to switch at first, but now I am so beyond glad I got out when I did. Now I can be happy and have my CGM that actually works, and will eventually be integrated with my pump.
     
  16. Lee

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    See -this is my point - looking at this from an organizational point of view - this is wrong. I, as a consumer of their product, should not be forced to provide this letter for a service that I was previously receiving...we have been loyal Minimed users for 1 1/2 years shy of a decade. And now, all of a sudden, I have to fight to get the pump that my child needs? All because their CGM does not work with my child? That is a fallacy, and it is the death of an organization.

    There is a thing called an organization life cycle and Minimed just hit a spot where they can decide to die - by forcing their product on all of us - or they can adapt to the needs of the market and rebrand themselves. Or as Andy, from Andy Griffin, liked to say, they are just getting to big for their britches
     
  17. Beach bum

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    Bingo!
    When there are products, that are as good as or better (yet not integrated), why go through the bother of getting a letter on top of all the other paperwork that is provided?

    I do hope Medtronic has someone trolling the forums...
     
  18. MomofSweetOne

    MomofSweetOne Approved members

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    I received this email in the past few weeks:

    Medtronic is dedicated to delivering safe and effective products to help you manage your diabetes. We?re also committed to being part of the advancement of diabetes care through cutting-edge research and development to help evolve how diabetes is managed. While we?re excited about a bright future, we know that every day, we need to continue to earn your trust and confidence.

    On behalf of the Medtronic family, I wanted to take the opportunity to personally apologize for the increase in safety notifications you have received over the last several months, which we understand can be concerning. They are done to reinforce how to use our devices and supplies or to provide new information as it becomes available. Moving forward, you will be hearing from us more consistently and will continue to receive communications from us ? online, on the phone or by mail.

    We also want to assure you that we are listening to your feedback and are acting upon your insights. When we receive your feedback, a process is set into motion that links your valuable insight with our product and development teams. Our goal now is to further improve this process and act even more quickly once we hear what you have to say.

    Thank you for the trust you place in us; we are grateful for the opportunity to be your partner in diabetes care.

    Sincerely,

    Katie Szyman
    President
    Medtronic Diabetes


    There seems to be a total disconnect between what they're saying and what they're doing.
     
  19. moco89

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    I agree with you, and my post was not intended to imply "stay with Medtronic" or "put up with their stuff", as it is unacceptable. I apologize if I implied that this was ok in any way, or made anything about the situation more infuriating.

    But, I do think that if some individuals have endos that are willing to write such letters, they could play this card with Medtronic, to stop this madness, and benefit people as a whole.

    Of course, hitting them in the pocket book by no longer doing business with them is much more effective.
     
  20. moco89

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    Well they better be making changes right away.

    Also, Medtronic may have this "groundbreaking technology" (whether you consider low glucose suspend good or not--I don't think it is THAT great), but the JDRF put the funds in for the research and **product development** for Medtronic to make this product in the first place.

    Perhaps talking to the JDRF regarding the quality and the service of the medical device companies is another step that could be taken, as many people here "support" the JDRF through donations.

    I am just saying, if you are disappointed with Medtronic and you donate to the JDRF, maybe you might want to consider that your funds aren't being used properly, for sub-par delivery of products.
     

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