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Old 07-06-2012, 12:47 PM
 
Location: a nation with hope
13,155 posts, read 16,873,712 times
Reputation: 5009

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Quote:
Originally Posted by nuke_road_warrior View Post
Hi everyone,

A few things I have found,

Afer loosing two jobs for sleeping at my desk (yeah, I know denial ain't just a river in Egypt). I finally had a sleep study done about 3 yrs ago. AHI of about 60, scary part, oxygen sats down to about 92%! Got a machine and took about 2 to 3 weeks to get used to it. Now I can't fall asleep without it.

My DME (Durable Medical Equipment) supplier ripped me off good, but when you're tired and desperate, you don't read the fine print. Turns out what I thought was an outright purchase was in fact a lease/purchase agreement. Between the inflated price the DME charged me, the co-pays for each lease payment, and the deductible from my insurance, I paid more out of pocket than I could have purchased one on the internet for. Yes, you will need a copy of your Rx for whomever you buy the machine from. Keep a copy don't surrender your only copy to the DME! I have found most internet suppliers friendly and helpful. Also, I highly recommend checking out some of the internet forums on Sleep Apnea. cpaptalk.com is one I particularly like. Knowledge is power, and there are a lot of us out there.

As for equipment, I use a respironcs C-FLEX Auto-PAP with humidifier (set on max), its an older unit, no longer made but it works for me. My mask is a full face type Fisher and Paykel Flex-Fit 431. I would recommend an Auto-PAP (A-PAP) machine with the ability to read the data. Any of the major brands should be OK, do your research and check the forums to see what others have to say about your equipment. Don't be a slave to your DME or Sleep Doc. You need to take charge of your therapy. After all its your therapy not theirs.
Just discovered this thread. A word of caution, since I got ripped off too. My DME said they were selling the machine to me because I didn't want to be involved in ongoing rentals; I paid my estimated 20% upfront, but they immediately converted the deal to a reantal with my insurance co. without informing me. When my insurance changed several months later, they never let me know that the old ins. company wasn't paying claims. Then, they send me a bill for $600+ on top of the 20% I paid them initially.

Good advice from nuke_road_warrior. Be careful and don't trust your DME too much, no matter how "nice" they seem.
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Old 07-06-2012, 04:11 PM
 
4,007 posts, read 9,885,827 times
Reputation: 1792
You all are making me nervous. I go to pick up my CPAP on Tuesday. They already told me I need to pay (after insurance) $195 plus $10/mo for 10 months and then it is "mine." I asked what the point of $10/mo was and if I could just pay the extra $100 up front, making it $295 for the machine. They said that they have found too many people don't end up using it and if they put me on a payment plan "rent to own" type, I can return it if I want to. Um, no, for $10/mo I will keep it and sell if I need to, but I won't because I need it. I slept better with it at my sleep study.

So, when I go in Tue to pick it up, what do I need to ask to ensure I don't get another $600 bill????

Last edited by DawnW; 07-06-2012 at 04:21 PM..
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Old 07-06-2012, 06:41 PM
 
Location: Lake Norman, NC
7,069 posts, read 10,821,088 times
Reputation: 30340
Hi Dawn: I wish I could help you but I don't know the financials of the machine. I've had mine for several years now and I guess I just paid for it upfront when I got it.

My question for anyone who knows is this... What determines if your "setting" should change on the CPAP machine? I haven't been back to the sleep Doctor since I got the thing. I've just been using it and getting supplies from the medical supply store. (And I buy replacement masks / pillows from the internet.)

Do you have to bring the machine or cards into the Doctor's office? Do you have to do another sleep study?
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Old 07-06-2012, 07:07 PM
 
4,007 posts, read 9,885,827 times
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I was told that 6 weeks after I get my machine and use it, I will have a follow up with the sleep doc and then periodic follow ups. I will have to bring in my card and if I am having any issues with my machine or mask, I will need to bring those in too.

As for the cost, so far they have been pretty upfront with me. I pay $35 copays for doc visits and then the sleep study was 100% covered. So, hopefully the CPAP coverage is what they say it is.

Dawn

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stripes17 View Post
Hi Dawn: I wish I could help you but I don't know the financials of the machine. I've had mine for several years now and I guess I just paid for it upfront when I got it.

My question for anyone who knows is this... What determines if your "setting" should change on the CPAP machine? I haven't been back to the sleep Doctor since I got the thing. I've just been using it and getting supplies from the medical supply store. (And I buy replacement masks / pillows from the internet.)

Do you have to bring the machine or cards into the Doctor's office? Do you have to do another sleep study?
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Old 07-06-2012, 09:12 PM
 
Location: Lake Norman, NC
7,069 posts, read 10,821,088 times
Reputation: 30340
Quote:
Originally Posted by DawnW View Post
I was told that 6 weeks after I get my machine and use it, I will have a follow up with the sleep doc and then periodic follow ups. I will have to bring in my card and if I am having any issues with my machine or mask, I will need to bring those in too.

As for the cost, so far they have been pretty upfront with me. I pay $35 copays for doc visits and then the sleep study was 100% covered. So, hopefully the CPAP coverage is what they say it is.

Dawn
Wow! That's excellent. I paid $400 out of pocket for each sleep study and I forget what I paid on the CPAP machine. I've been hesitant about going back to the doctor as I don't want to have an outpatient "wallet-ectomy" performed on me.
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Old 07-06-2012, 09:19 PM
 
Location: Kenmore, WA
7,359 posts, read 6,215,390 times
Reputation: 10577
DH sleeps with one -- since May '08. I hate it, but his sleep patterns have improved. It took awhile to get it "dialed in" as he puts it. He's sort of a gadget guy, so I think he enjoyed the challenge. In the beginning he spent a lot of time going back to the Lincare people to get his settings optimized. After a few months of actually getting sleep, he bought one.
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Old 07-06-2012, 10:08 PM
 
Location: Charlotte Metro Area
2,126 posts, read 3,209,188 times
Reputation: 1611
I can't say that I'm especially happy with my DME either.

Apria.
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Old 07-06-2012, 11:55 PM
 
5,150 posts, read 6,422,139 times
Reputation: 1429
Quote:
Originally Posted by LookinForMayberry View Post
DH sleeps with one -- since May '08. I hate it, but his sleep patterns have improved. It took awhile to get it "dialed in" as he puts it. He's sort of a gadget guy, so I think he enjoyed the challenge. In the beginning he spent a lot of time going back to the Lincare people to get his settings optimized. After a few months of actually getting sleep, he bought one.
Is he on the same machine? The newer ones are a lot smaller and barely audible. Check out CPAP.COM for some ideas if it's time for a new machine. I'm not saying buy there if you have insurance but they are a good place to learn the latest.
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Old 07-06-2012, 11:56 PM
 
5,150 posts, read 6,422,139 times
Reputation: 1429
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ex-LI View Post
I can't say that I'm especially happy with my DME either.

Apria.
Try Blue Dot Medical.
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Old 07-07-2012, 07:49 PM
 
4,007 posts, read 9,885,827 times
Reputation: 1792
Oh my word!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stripes17 View Post
Wow! That's excellent. I paid $400 out of pocket for each sleep study and I forget what I paid on the CPAP machine. I've been hesitant about going back to the doctor as I don't want to have an outpatient "wallet-ectomy" performed on me.
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