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Got Respironics Dreamstation A-CPAP/Rent to Own?
I went to see my sleep doctor for the first time today after my initial sleep test and another night for titration. He told me I had severe sleep apnea, I woke an average of 78.8 times an hour and my oxygen level was in the low 80's at some point during my test. He didn't really get too specific other than that I was going to be prescribed an Auto CPAP machine and that they used a DMEP with a rep in his office. I would be able to leave today with a machine. I told him that I reached my max out of pocket cost for the year already and I was hoping to be able to have insurance pay for the machine this year. I also asked him for a copy of the sleep study/my prescription and he told me to come back in a few days to get it.

Well the lady that worked for the in office DMEP seemed like she was in a hurry to get out of there, it was around 4:30pm. She brought in the machine, a Philips Respironics Dreamstation Auto CPAP with humidifier. She quickly went over the machine and seemed annoyed when I had questions. When I asked about the ramp feature she told me that machine was set for a range of between 4 and 11 and ramp was not needed, even though the machine has it. OK, I thought?

I told her that I had reached my max out of pocket costs for the year and was hoping that the machine could be purchased this year and not rented. She told me that her company did rent to own and I would have to call the main office and talk to a costumer service rep about costs. She then had me sign some papers about the rental. Again I asked about what this was going to cost me and she told me that machine costs $1200 and it depended on what my insurance covered. She couldn't give me what the monthly rental would cost me or the ins. co.

I remarked that I was not comfortable with the way things were going from the minimal information I was getting from her and the fact that I felt forced into using the doctors in house DME provider. While they do not work for the sleep center, they do seem to be the only easy way to go if using this place. She said that was how this center worked. I told her no one told me about that when I was originally calling and it should have been something to tell prospective patients.

Now I am sure if I made a stink, I could have gotten my prescription and went with a different provider. At this point, after the studies, going to all the doctors and to be honest, wanting to start getting some good sleep, I signed the papers and got the machine. I only have two months until I get back to paying my $800 deductible and have no idea how a rent to own works with a deductible? I don't know what the monthly payment will be or if I will have to pay the whole $800 deductible before they pay any monthly payments in the new year? I imagine they will pay the whole monthly payment for November and December and then I will be on the hook until the $800 is reached the following months.

Make me wonder, I have seen the Philips Respironics Dreamstation Auto CPAP with humidifier for sale on another website for $828 outright, to own and it may be even cheaper with some discounts I saw. Can I rent the machine until the new year from the DME and then buy my own from somewhere else?

I am going to call my insurance company and the DME provider tomorrow, but want to see if you all think rent to own and my experience is normal? Am I worrying to much about it? I mean what could the monthly payment be if insurance doesn't cover it?

Thanks and sorry for the long post, I'm new to Sleep Apnea treatment.
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Yeah, you got railroaded. In general, you shouldn't let the doctor pick the DME. You have more leverage if you chose your own DME.

However, the DreamStation Auto is probably a pretty good machine. The most difficult bit is to get a good, data capable CPAP machine. The DreamStation has all of this. You probably did about as well as you could.

Personally, I'd go with a ResMed A10 AutoSet given the choice. The DreamStation is a brand new model, and might have some problems we don't know about yet. Also, the free SleepyHead software doesn't work with the DreamStation machine yet. Hopefully, SleepyHead will be updated to handle it sometime soon.

As for insurance and payment, you got the standardized screwing that you'll probably get from anyone in our insurance controlled, big box store, assembly line medicine. You probably won't get a better answer no matter which DME you go with. It's pretty much standardized in terms of rates, as long as your DME and doctor are "in network." YMMV depending on your insurance plan.
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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Call your insurance co. Ask them if they will buy the machine outright with copies of your precription. Never depend on a DME for anything especially anything conserning money.
They WILL bare face lie. Regularly.
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Hi pwgphoto,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
Hang in there for more responses to your post and much success to you with your CPAP therapy.
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Thanks all. I am lying in bed right now with the machine on and nasal pillows in trying to get used to it. My first night at home with CPAP. I had one tough night during the titration on CPAP. Hopefully it is easier at home
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These tips might helps http://www.apneaboard.com/wiki/index.php...CPAP_users

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