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[Equipment] DME-Software-Needed Rant
#1
It will come as no surprise to anyone that I'm having trouble ordering my supplies from DME's. I have insurance and they pay for most of the cost of my supplies, but it seems to me that the whole process could be streamlined if I could just use my computer to do the ordering.

I would just log on to the DME's web site where I'd see a list of eligible supplies. I click on what I want, they charge my credit card, and mail the supplies to me.

I'm on my second DME now. Changed when I changed doctors mostly because I wasn't happy with the way the first DME was taking and filling my orders. For example they supplied my original CPAP and two weeks later a BiPAP. They over-charged me for the BiPAP to the tune of $300, never told me, and applied the credit to my account using it to pay for my supplies. A year or so later I found out when I asked why I hadn't been billed for supplies. They then offered to send me a check for the credit on my account. They could not or would not send me a statement showing how they arrived at the balance on my account, telling me that my insurance company supplies that information when they send me my EOB's.

Now I'm having similar issues with the second DME. I've ordered supplies from them three times now in the last few months. Yesterday they sent me a mask, hose and filters. When I placed that order I asked if they could simply send me the rest of the eligible supplies for the remainder of this calendar year. No. They said that I would have to call every three months because the insurance company has it set up that way.

In today's mail I get another mask, hose, and filters. And it's the mask I used to use which is different from the mask they sent me yesterday.

This is too much!
Sleepster
Apnea Board Moderator
www.ApneaBoard.com


INFORMATION ON APNEA BOARD FORUMS OR ON APNEABOARD.COM SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF A PHYSICIAN BEFORE SEEKING TREATMENT FOR MEDICAL CONDITIONS, INCLUDING SLEEP APNEA. INFORMATION POSTED ON THE APNEA BOARD WEB SITE AND FORUMS ARE PERSONAL OPINION ONLY AND NOT NECESSARILY A STATEMENT OF FACT.
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#2
they (well, I) don't refer to it with the proper name

Demonic
Medical
Experience

for nothin Wink
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#3
(06-26-2014, 02:31 PM)Sleepster Wrote: It will come as no surprise to anyone that I'm having trouble ordering my supplies from DME's. I have insurance and they pay for most of the cost of my supplies, but it seems to me that the whole process could be streamlined if I could just use my computer to do the ordering.

I just buy my stuff online and pay out of pocket. The machine came from the DME, but I order everything else.

Even though I have insurance, it's just not worth the time and aggravation,

My favorite mask in an Adam Circuit nasal pillow thing. It's comfortable, fits me perfectly, is cheap (comparatively) and never leaks. My DME dismissed it out of hand as "old fashioned" and doesn't carry it and refuses to get it, and instead wanted me to try a crap-load of masks that they do carry, that don't work for me.

It's all pretty sad.

At some point the internet competition will start eating their lunch.
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#4
Sleep steer, your first mistake was allowing the DME to become aware you have a credit card. I will never do that. Next you actually gave them access to the CC number.
So far my Medicare Advantage Plan is paying 100% of my DME expense. If that should change I will pay by check, even as I stand next to their sign that says checks not accepted.
I have been asking since Oct for an accounting of what my new ASV machine actually costs. No admits to being in a department that has access to that information. I have informed them that if they can't tell me what my financial exposure might be I can't give them a credit card.
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#5
Many DME's are behind the times when it comes to technology and ordering supplies/billing process is a HUGE problem (especially at the DME I work for). The "online" stores are more effecient because they don't have to deal with insurance.

As far as supplies and insurance, some insurances will allow you to ship a 3 month supply of items to a patient and some won't. Some require annual RX from the doctor and some don't. Some will take an RX from a PA/NP, some won't. Some require compliance for your new machine, some don't. Some require compliance on a replacement machine, some don't. Some do compliance of 10 months, 12 months or 13 months. Next throw in Medicare special rules and you have a whole other layer of problems to deal with.

The DME I get my stuff from is very friendly/easy to deal with to get supplies. I just walk in, they see that I am eligible and they give me my supplies. The flipside is that I got a new machine in January and I haven't seen a bill for it yet. I know I should be paying 25% copay up until I hit my max out of pocket but at this point I haven't seen a bill or even statement yet.
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#6
I think that there is another layer of complexity based on whether the insurance is an HMO or not. My DME must get authorization from my medical group for supplies as well as deal with the insurance company.
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#7
(06-26-2014, 04:36 PM)bwexler Wrote: Sleep steer, your first mistake was allowing the DME to become aware you have a credit card. I will never do that. Next you actually gave them access to the CC number.
So far my Medicare Advantage Plan is paying 100% of my DME expense. If that should change I will pay by check, even as I stand next to their sign that says checks not accepted.
I have been asking since Oct for an accounting of what my new ASV machine actually costs. No admits to being in a department that has access to that information. I have informed them that if they can't tell me what my financial exposure might be I can't give them a credit card.

Paying by personal check is just as risky. Since the banks got their way; every checking account is ACH enabled. Having your routing number and account number, they can pull money from your account without a written instrument.

If a balance is owed, send them a USPS money order by certified mail.
Let them try to defraud the Post Office -- they'll enjoy Leavenworth in the summer time.
INFORMATION ON APNEA BOARD FORUMS OR ON APNEABOARD.COM SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF A PHYSICIAN BEFORE SEEKING TREATMENT FOR MEDICAL CONDITIONS, INCLUDING SLEEP APNEA. INFORMATION POSTED ON THE APNEA BOARD WEB SITE AND FORUMS ARE PERSONAL OPINION ONLY AND NOT NECESSARILY A STATEMENT OF FACT.
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#8
(06-27-2014, 12:34 PM)justMongo Wrote: Paying by personal check is just as risky. Since the banks got their way; every checking account is ACH enabled. Having your routing number and account number, they can pull money from your account without a written instrument.

Technically yes, but I think it's still a crime unless you've specifically authorized them to do so.

Good luck getting your local prosecutor to take action, though.

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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