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"Closest DME"
#1
This is interesting, and thought I'd share to get your take on it.

The sleep lab I've been going to is in a town just south of where I live. They sort of blend into one another actually. It's 11.5 miles from my home and 12.4 from my office.

In their building is a DME, purported to be a separate company, as they are referred to as "they," as "they have an office across the hall from us." The entire building is affiliated with one of our hospitals for sleep issues only.

I was told by the tech who did my CPAP titration that the doctor would read the results, write a prescription, and send it to the DME closest to me geographically who participates with my insurance (Blue Cross Blue Shield).

Yesterday, the DME called to schedule an appointment. I didn't think much about where they're located, as I figured I'd look them up before my appointment so I'd know whre I was headed.

Today I decided to buckle down and really do my homework on sleep apnea, equipment manufacturers and models, DMEs, etc. And here's the interesting part: I came upon a DME located 3.6 miles from my home and .2 miles (yeah, that's 2/10) from my office! They are affiliated with both the same hospital as the sleep center AND the other hospital in town (which is 3.6 miles from my home and .2 from my office), AND yes, they participate with my insurance company.

Something seems obvious here to me. Does it to you?

Lamb
To all, to each, a fair good-night,
And pleasing dreams, and slumbers light.
Scott—Marmion. L’Envoy. To the Reader.

Diagnosed with OSA September 2014
AHI=18
Lowest SpO2: 79%
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#2
Well, whether a sleep clinic, or an eye exam place, or whatever, it is very common to have these birds in the same nest. But you always have the right to have your prescription sent wherever you choose. As a matter of fact, you have the right to have the prescription in your hand to take to whoever you choose. So if you don't have it yet, call up the darling little receptionist at the sleep clinic and tell her you want to stop by and pick up your prescription.
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#3
(11-01-2014, 12:15 PM)retired_guy Wrote: As a matter of fact, you have the right to have the prescription in your hand to take to whoever you choose.

Yep--I had them fax it to me. In fact, I was so skeptical about all of this that yesterday when that DME called to schedule my appointment, I scheduled it for later next week (which killed me, considering I want some restful sleep NOW) so I could check around.

It seems on-line vendors don't "do rentals," so I'm going to call that nearby DME first thing on Monday to schedule an appointment--Rx in hand.

Lamb Wink
To all, to each, a fair good-night,
And pleasing dreams, and slumbers light.
Scott—Marmion. L’Envoy. To the Reader.

Diagnosed with OSA September 2014
AHI=18
Lowest SpO2: 79%
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#4
You want a copy of your prescription to keep. And a copy of your sleep report to keep. Both of these you will need should you ever want to switch suppliers or buy things on line.
PaulaO2
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#5
My sleep doc's office is next to a sleep lab & DME. The doc interprets their polysomnography reports; and is paid for it.
There is perhaps some unholy duality there. There is an internal door that leads to the DME without going outside.
Convenient -- yes. I would think the doc could not have any financial interest in the DME -- or it would be seen as an ethics violation among his peers. Same with a kick-back.

@Lambsydoats -- do get a copy of your prescription. You might even carry a copy with you.
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#6
I was chuckling to myself this morning as I was adding these results and a copy of my prescription to the three-ring binder where I keep copies of all of my test results. It's one BIG binder.

Never thought to have a copy of my Rx to carry with me though. Good idea!

And I am going to see if the hospital closest to me offers these services so I can switch right at the beginning of my therapy/monitoring if possible.

Lamb
To all, to each, a fair good-night,
And pleasing dreams, and slumbers light.
Scott—Marmion. L’Envoy. To the Reader.

Diagnosed with OSA September 2014
AHI=18
Lowest SpO2: 79%
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#7
The relationship between doctors and DME's is often incestuous. Sometimes there's kickbacks of some kind, sometimes there's some sort of ownership interest, sometimes there's a pattern of buddies doing favors for each other, sometimes, it's somebody's old school chum.

Sometimes it's just that Doctor A is familiar with DME B and finds it easiest to work with the same DME. Sometimes Doctor A knows DME B is the best DME around.

Be sure the DME choice is what's best for you. Also be aware you can use it for leverage against the DME to get the right equipment.
Get the free SleepyHead software here.
Useful links.
Click here for information on the main alternative to CPAP.
If it's midnight and a DME tells you it's dark outside, go and check it yourself.
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#8
Sound like you getting on top of things. Make sure you get the machine YOU want, not just what particular brand the DME says they carry. By insurance standards youll have to live with that machine for 5 yrs before they will replace it.
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#9
(11-02-2014, 12:14 AM)Ghost1958 Wrote: By insurance standards youll have to live with that machine for 5 yrs before they will replace it.

So this whole rent phase isn't just to try one and, if I don't like it for whatever reason, I can rent a different one for month two, etc?
To all, to each, a fair good-night,
And pleasing dreams, and slumbers light.
Scott—Marmion. L’Envoy. To the Reader.

Diagnosed with OSA September 2014
AHI=18
Lowest SpO2: 79%
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#10
You are doing so much better than I did -- and my introduction to OSA & therapy was nearly perfect. (really it was, and really you are!)
Sweet Dreams,

HerbM
Sleep study AHI: 49 RDI: 60 -- APAP 10-11 w/AHI: 1.5 avg for 7-days (up due likely to hip replacement recovery)

"We can all breathe together or we will all suffocate alone."
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