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Re: [IP] Old MM bill-even longer(rant)

Oh boy, does this ring a bell!  I have always been a huge supporter of
Minimed when other IPers have bashed them....until now. I too received a
letter last month saying that I owed $1750.10 ( I think that amount has all
you other guys beat!).  This dates back to December of 2000 when I first
ordered my pump....and then several supply orders after that.  The thing is,
this $1700 is what was left after my insuarance paid Minimed. I had applied
and been approved for Minimed's financial assistance program. So supposedly,
after my insurance paid 80%, Minimed wrote off the other 20%.  I never heard
another word about it until last month when I got that wonderful letter from
Medtronic Minimed. I immediately panicked...I don't have $1700! I got right
on the phone and called MM.  After being put on hold for about 15 minutes, I
got Steffi on the line, who has a wonderful accent by the way, but seems to
know little or nothing about much of anything. I explained to her that I had
the financial assistance and didn't owe MM anything.  She had no record of
me owing MM anything, in fact she couldn't even find my account # in the
system. She left to speak with her supervisor then came back and told me
that I should contact the financial department.  By this time I was pretty
angry so I told her that I wasn't contacting the financial dept........that
SHE could do it.  She calmly replied that she couldn't and said that I would
have to call Minimed directly. "Ummm, HELLO........is this not Minimed that
I called??" She fumbled around for a few minutes then admitted that yes it
was indeed Minimed, she was just a little confused.  Finally tho, I just
gave up on her and told her to give me the number I should call.  She did
and I called....the person answered the phone "Monteray Financial"....I had
no idea why I was calling this company but proceeded to tell HER my story.
She asked for my account # and then SHE couldn't find it either. She told me
I didn't owe MM anything to which I replied "then why did I get this
letter?"  Her explanation was that a mass mailing had been sent out in error
and to disregard it.  Oh so that's what I should do....disregard it!
Alrighty then! I hung up the phone but still felt that this wasn't the end
of the story.

Fast forward to last week, I get another lovely letter from MM saying that
their attempts to contact me had been ignored and that if I didn't pay the
$1700 within 30 days, it would be sent to collections. By now I am livid. I
started calling the number in the letter again. The first time I actually
got thru to an actual person, she picked up the phone giggling and out of
breath and immediately put me on hold (honest to g-d it's true, you can
imagine what was going thru my head). Then she picks up the phone a couple
more times, never says anything, just sits there, I can hear her shuffling
papers and talking in the background.  Finally, I get cut off altogether.
So I called again....and again.....and again.  I was put on hold every time
for at least 20 minutes. Finally a person came back, took my name and number
and said I would be called back within 24 hours. Guess what....nobody called
back! So I called the next day. It was pretty much the same story, someone
took my name and number and promised to call back within 24 hours. This goes
on for several more days.....MM NEVER called back.......but I tried to call
them EVERY day never getting to an actual person who could help me. I even
had one guy named Bernard take my name and number after I told him I had
already left it 4 times. He gave me his extension number and told me that if
no one had called me withing the next 24 hours, that I should call him
directly and he would take care of it. Well lah-ti-dah.......there's no way
to reach an actual phone person directly with the 1-888 number I was
calling. This past Friday I managed to get a speaking thinking person when I
called.....and it only took 4 tries! I tell him my story and he apologizes
for all the trouble, then tells me to hold while he looks into it. When he
comes back, he says they have no record of my ever having been approved for
financial assistance.  OMG, I almost lost it! He tells me not to worry about
it.....lol....yeah right!  He then says that he will send my information to
some other department ( I forget which one) and they will look into it....it
will take 20 or 25 days, but they will straighten it out. He also says that
this has been happening to lots of other people.......hence the high volume
of calls which is why no one can get thru on the phones. I tell ya
what....I've had it up to here with MM.and I told him so. And this really
makes me laugh.....his last words to me were "I'm going to take care of this
for you....you just pretend you never received that letter."  HA! I swear if
MM were the last pump company on the face of the earth, I would go back to
needles before I would EVER order another thing from them. This is

Sharon J in NC
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