RE: Ontario Suppliers
Oh, here's a topic I can sink my teeth into. :-)
I'm in Ontario, and I've used a few different DMEs.
VitalAire. Referred here by my sleep doc. Pretty sure he owned shares in the company. Absolutely nothing was about what I wanted for my therapy, it was all about what the Dr wanted me to have. Seemed to know their stuff at first, but less so as I progressed. For instance, I was sent here for an APAP machine basically right out of my first sleep lab, before the titration study, since my apnea was too severe to wait 8 month for the titration appointment. I walked in, the RT took one look at my beard and said "You want this mask..." (He was right, it was most comfortable, sealed perfectly, and I've used it ever since.) They set me up with a repironics APAP machine as a loaner, told me to come back in a couple weeks. Machine was set as per the doc, 10 cm H20 to 18 cm H20. Slept like a baby. 9 hours on CPAP the first night, felt 10 years younger in the morning. I went back in 3 weeks for them to dump the data... data showed 95th percentile pressure of 18 and median of 18. "Great! So we can set you up with a fixed CPAP set at 18!" I asked how he arrived at that. "Well, most of the time the machine runs at 18 or less." "Um... yeah. So what if the required pressure is, in fact, 19?" "What do you mean?" "Well...if it's set to a max 18, and it always runs at or around 18... wouldn't it make sense that it's capping out the whole time?" So, they sent me home with the same machine set 12 to 20... and the number in 2 weeks was, indeed, 19. So they sent me home with a fixed CPAP, set at 19. Blew the mask off my face all night, suffered aerophagia, etc. With or without ramp, etc. Went back the next day, livid. "Oh, your doctor won't prescribe an APAP. He doesn't believe in them." Doc decided, eventually (after a titration study during which I slept maybe an hour, in short doses), that I should have CPAP set at 14. So I started talking to another DME in town, Medelife.
Medelife. Told me that there is no reason at all that I should just be happy with a CPAP machine, if I can't tolerate the pressure. Explained that ADP will pay for an APAP if I met certain condition... primarily variance of about 5 points of pressure, during the night. (I do.) And the Doc has to prescribe one. He doesn't believe in them... so he doesn't. This RT couldn't get him to write a new script, and wasn't really trying. I finally told the doc to write a script for APAP so I could buy the thing myself, and ordered one from Medelife. "It'll take about 2 weeks." 2 weeks later... the day I had to return the loathed fixed CPAP loaner, "Oh, I forgot to order it." Buh-bye.
Medigas. Walked into the place 20 minutes after the above failure. Left 20 minutes later with my shiny new ResMed S9 Auto. In the RT's office, she's getting ready to set me up, machine is in the box... "I'll be back in a second..." By the time she got back I had it out of the box, programmed, set to 12-20, and ready to go. "Did you set...?" Yes. "And ...?" Yes. "Oh. You're pretty well informed about these machines, I guess I really don't need to teach you much..." Yeah, I had the clinicians manual, the software, etc. (And a talent for computers and electronics.) Thank you Apneaboard...
I've used Medigas for supplies, etc, since. But I just found out that the Motion Specialties in town is a CPAP supplier, too. Didn't know that. ROFL - through all of the above, my office was next door to them. /d'oh
Motion Specialties. No solid impression. I broke a clip on my headgear a couple months ago, and popped over for a replacement. They had it, they knew what it was at a glance, it was cheap, and they were pleasant to deal with.