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Need help selecting DME
#1
Question 
I'm sorry for the question as I'm sure it has been asked many times.


After waiting 2+ weeks to hear from a DME to get a machine, I am going to get my prescription and call a DME directly.  Per my insurance, I have a choice of 4 DME providers.

Apria
EdgePark
Medline
Rotech


I'm wondering if there is a consensus on the best of this bunch?  It seems very few people have anything good to say about Apria.  How about the other 3?

Thanks so much!

Thanks
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#2
KC, from a quick online view, Medline seems to have the highest reviews, followed by Rotech and Edgepark. I would call and find out if they will dispense the machine you want based on a CPAP prescription, or if they will dispense an auto cpap. The way they respond to that kind of inquiry will tell you how interested they are in service.
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#3
My two cents: I have some experience using Rotech, and it wasn't great. Take the following with a grain of salt because this was in Denver, and your office may be better.

They failed to call me, and I had to chase them down to get them to provide my equipment. When I finally did get them on the line, they weren't pleasant by any stretch of the imagination. They also checked my compliance data daily, and this drove me nuts. I would get phone calls to the tune of "last night looked great!" or "you need to try harder because you won't meet your compliance requirements with those numbers." The nail in the coffin was when I changed my low pressure from 4-8 with no ramp (I was choking), they called that next afternoon and told me I was violating my compliance and that my insurance required that I show compliance through them. After that I kicked them to the curb, switched and went with Resmed.
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#4
Actually Apria has some good points and that Apria is where I must go according to my care provider organization. I have learned how to deal with them. One thing-I never give them a credit card number although they often ask for one.

On my last order, I ordered a Resmed F20 mask to try. I was told that they would not have any in stock for 8 weeks. I told them that was fine I was not in a big hurry. The F20 showed up in two weeks. They were sent one unit early so it could be used as a show and tell unit. They forwarded it directly to me. I found this out when I called them back to find out where the extra 2 cushions were. Since it was intended to be a display unit, they  did not get any spare cushions. Don't need them right away anyway. So, no big deal.

My point is that Apria can be very aggravating in some ways but they can be good to deal with in others. I think a lot depends on what part of Apria you are dealing with. For instance, I have 4 different telephone numbers for four different locations where I can place orders. From experience I stick with the one that has given me the best service.

I am one that has complained about Apria mainly due to their Respiratory Therapists. I could never get hold of one directly. The receptionist would say there was no one available, would I like to leave a message. I would leave a message and one of two things would happen. 1. I would never get a call back. 2. An RT would call back when I was in the middle of a meeting or otherwise occupied and could not take the call. This would start the sequence all over again.

I finally got so fed up that I unloaded (nicely) on some poor order-taking clerk at the location. Amazingly, a week or so later I got a call from the RT Supervisor (a hosehead himself). He gave me an answer to my question that I later learned was very misleading (I think intentionally so), and he assigned me to a particular RT who gave me his direct phone number and also told me how to track him down. That worked OK for a while but then I found the Apnea Board and have not felt the need to talk to an RT at Apria since.

I did talk to one RT when Apria was replacing my VPAP. The RT called me to set up an appointment for me to pick it up. I asked him which machine it was. He said it was a PR and I do not remember what exact model he said. I said no I had a Resmed S8 VPAP Auto and that was what is to be replaced. He said,"OH!". Let me look that up. Anyway he gave me the Resmed S9 VPAP Auto somewhat reluctantly.

Anyway I relate all of this to show that Apria is not all bad and if you work with them carefully, they can be a reasonably good supplier. Again I think that it depends a lot on the local organization that you deal with as well as what parts of the organization you deal with for your carry-on orders.

Best Regards,

PaytonA

Admin Note:
PaytonA passed away in September 2017
Click HERE to read his Memorial Thread

~ Rest in Peace ~
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#5
I know Apria has gotten a bad rap but I have nothing but good results with them.
Dont-know  I am an accountant so any advice given here is not medical. If I give any financial advice, you can take it to the bank. However, you will have a hard time cashing it in. Okay
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#6
Thanks everyone for the feedback.

I called my doc today and am hoping to have my Rx in hand tomorrow and if I do I will start calling all of the DMEs to see what machines they carry and to try and figure out who I want to work with.

Thanks
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#7
Well I tried calling Medline, they say they don't work with my insurance anymore.

I called Edgepark and just got dumped in a voicemail.

I called Rotech and they indicated they wanted my doctor to call them to set everything up.

Next I called Apria,  they wanted me to fax all the paperwork, prescription, etc to them and told me I should expect an appointment with their Respiratory Therapist in about 6 weeks to be evaluated to see what machine I needed.  Not good enough.

I called Aetna to express my frustration to see if there were any online vendors I could use to speed things up.

The gentleman I spoke with agreed 6 weeks was crazy and called American Home Patient while I was on the line.  I have to get them my paperwork but should have an appointment to get a machine within about a week.

If anyone has used American Home Patient and has any feedback I would appreciate it.

Thanks!
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#8
KC, don't know anything about your local DME's but had a similar experience when I first got my machine. My sleep doctor informed me a DME would contact me which they did within hours to snag me as a customer. Was told a RT would call within a couple days to setup an appointment which again they did but the appointment time I was given was about 6 weeks away. I told them I wouldn't wait that long and I'll just contact another DME. Surprise! They suddenly found an opening for me about a week away. As many have stated on this board you are in control of who you decide to use and what machine you'll accept up until the time you sign to take procession. Kudos to you for taking a stance early. Don't be afraid to ask them what machine they will be giving you prior to your appointment.
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#9
Yes!  I did this, and it was very helpful. Saved a good amount of time and hassle. Thankfully, they told me the one I wanted; otherwise I was prepared to tell them which one(s) I was willing to accept or I'd go elsewhere.
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#10
(03-07-2017, 01:56 PM)Cranberry Ray Wrote: KC, don't know anything about your local DME's but had a similar experience when I first got my machine. My sleep doctor informed me a DME would contact me which they did within hours to snag me as a customer. Was told a RT would call within a couple days to setup an appointment which again they did but the appointment time I was given was about 6 weeks away. I told them I wouldn't wait that long and I'll just contact another DME. Surprise! They suddenly found an opening for me about a week away. As many have stated on this board you are in control of who you decide to use and what machine you'll accept up until the time you sign to take procession. Kudos to you for taking a stance early. Don't be afraid to ask them what machine they will be giving you prior to your appointment.

(03-07-2017, 02:07 PM)Hydrangea Wrote: Yes!  I did this, and it was very helpful. Saved a good amount of time and hassle. Thankfully, they told me the one I wanted; otherwise I was prepared to tell them which one(s) I was willing to accept or I'd go elsewhere.


Thanks to both of you!  I did confirm today that when they call to setup the appointment I can specify what machine I want and they said they should be able to accommodate that.  Let's hope that is true!
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