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Re: [IP] minimed


At 12:32 PM 05/30/2001 , you wrote:
>I have to admit that I am rather disappointed with the service I have
>received from Minimed as of late. I have been on the phone with them and my
>insurance company for a week and a half because I wanted to try the quick
>set with the inserter without committing to a 3 month supply. I followed
>minimed's instructions - ordered my regular 3 month supply and when I
>received it called them to exchange one box of the soft set for one box of
>the quick set (so that I would get a free inserter). I even asked them if
>this would be a problem since I heard (from this group) that they were
>running low. I assured by a sales rep and she even confirmed with her
>manager that it would be no problem. Of course, when I called back they told
>me that they wouldn't have told me that. Then their story became well we
>actually did tell you that but our supply is totally gone (within 5 days of
>my last phone call). I spoke with two different managers and got two more
>stories. One even said that I could buy a box with inserter if I wanted but
>they wouldn't exchange it because the insurance company wouldn't allow it. I
>explained that the box exchange was their idea and if the was true then why
>did they suggest it. I do not want to commit insurance fraud if this is
>illegal or something. Then she said well yes it is legal but minimed was no
>longer willing to exchange for the quick set -  just the soft set and
>silhouette.  The next manager said that I wasn't able to buy a box because
>the stock was so low and that the quick set wouldn't be available until
>August and that I should think about how she feels having to talk to so many
>angry customers with regard to the quick set. As if being out of stock was
>somehow MY fault? I am not so annoyed that they are out of the product, more
>that their customer service has been so poor the last few times that I have
>called. At least tell me upfront that supplies are low and don't promise me
>something you are unwilling to deliver. (When I had problems with the tape I
>had to call back to a different sales rep to get a sample of the bard
>adhesive. The second sales rep was very nice and apologize that time.)
>Hopefully the buy-out will bring back the wonderful customer service I saw a
>year ago when I went on the pump.
>patiently waiting until August,

I hope you are correct about customer service improving - I extracted the 
following from their web site...

Serving the Customer
 From the early days, customer service was an essential component of
Medtronic's operations. At one time, Earl Bakken, screwdriver in hand,
tended to electrical problems in local operating rooms, and Palmer
Hermundslie piloted his own airplane for emergency deliveries of the
company's pacemakers. This hands-on, person-to-person customer service
tradition continues today with a United States sales team that has double
in size during the past 10 years and with hundreds of technical support staff
members. Supplementing the face-to-face service are professionals who
provide technical assistance 24 hours a day via toll-free telephones.


Customer Education
An essential element of service at Medtronic is customer education, which
includes product training sessions, the sponsorship of major medical and
scientific seminars and symposia throughout the world, and professionally
accredited workshops.
The first Bakken Education Center, located at Medtronic's Fridley,
Minnesota, headquarters, symbolizes the company's commitment to
education. Dedicated in 1990, the center offers state-of-the-art classroom
hands-on training areas, sophisticated audiovisual equipment, and other
facilities to serve physicians, other health care professionals, and
Medtronic's sales and technical support organization.
Additional Bakken Education Centers are located in various cities
throughout the United States and in England, Germany, India, Japan, and
The Netherlands. Thousands of physicians and associated medical
professionals take part in learning sessions at the centers every year, and
many others attend company-sponsored symposia at other locations.

It sure appears to me that until the proposed MiniMed purchase that their 
only customers have been medical professionals and not the end-using consumer.

Jim S.
email @ redacted
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