Wednesday, June 3, 2020

In the nick of time

So our insurance has a specific company we can order our Dexcom CGM supplies from.  Even though these supplies are available at local pharmacies, I have to order them from a healthcare supply company but I can get, according to insurance, 3-months of supplies at once.  

Sounds good right?

Hmmm.  One Dexcom sensor lasts 10 days so for 3 months I get 9 sensors.  90 days of supplies for three months but some months have 31 days in them.  I cannot order new supplies until 12 weeks after my previous order.  I tried to order earlier online but the shipping date was for exactly 12 weeks from the last order.  I called the company this week just to make sure there were no other options and was told it was out of their hands, nothing they could do.  It isn't a large problem but it is an additional stress and we have plenty of stress, full up of stress, no thanks I don't need anymore stress.

So on the day they will send our next shipment we will have 7 days left of our current supply and they say it takes 4-5 days once they are shipped.  So if everything works out we will get the new sensors the day before we need one. 

I asked, not really expecting a satisfying answer, what happens if this sensor fails, or the adhesive wears off and it gets too loose, or the shipment is delayed?  The answer I got was "just give us a call and we'll make sure to ship you a sensor."  Um, you are already shipping sensors and they may not arrive in time but your solution is to ship me one?  I'm tired already of this and I've only been doing it for a week shy of 6 months. 

I'm a member of a type-1-diabetes facebook group in my general region (within 4 hours of my location) so I asked them about it.  I got several "groups" of answers.  

1. You just have to deal with it, work within the system, you can always go back to poking his finger 5-8 times a day and waking up in the middle of the night to check blood glucose levels for the few days while you wait for your shipment to arrive.  It only happens like this every three months. 

2. Pay for a box of sensors out of your own pocket so you have a little leeway. A box of sensors without insurance is over $350 from what I could find but sometimes costco has them on sale in their pharmacy for less a few people told me.

3. Just don't use a sensor for 5-10 days this time around but order on time and you'll be ahead for a while but, just so you know, you will eventually use that time up depending on how many days are in the month and where the weekend falls on your shipping date so you'll have to do this at least once a year.

4. Switch insurance companies.

I appreciate this group, I really do but these are four variations of bend over. That sucks. 

This group is full of amazing people though.  They never post negatively towards others in their shoes.  They never say "you are not entitled to your feelings on this" but they also don't let you wallow in self pity.  They try to lift you up and cheer you on and remind you that you've got this because you are the only one who can do it.  

Many members of this group, who I've never met, reached out in private messages to me.  They offered to loan me a sensor of theirs and trusted me to replace it when my shipment arrived.  They offered to deliver it to my house in the middle of the night if I needed; some of these people were over a two hour drive away. They've been where I stand and they know how it feels to tell your child that we are back on finger pokes for no reason other than that we can't have a sensor a few days before we will need it because insurance thinks we can't be trusted with it.  I guess they are worried we may overdose.  

I'm thankful we have the options we do but frustrated with the hoop jumping.  I will likely look into a new insurance option next fall when our open enrollment comes around and if we switch it will start in January so at least another six months.  It will likely just be a new set of issues though that I will have to learn to navigate.  When to call, who to ask for, how to get things done.  I am super fortunate that I have access to the types of health supplies I do have access to for my son but disillusioned a bit by the process.

So I'll just keep up the fight and know that others are out there making the same phone calls and feeling the same disappointments; connecting themselves with some people online and being thankful that other's hearts and trust is so much greater than could be imagined. It does feel strange to me how one thing can leave me so full of hope and grumpy sorrow at the same time.

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