10 Responses

  1. Leighann of D-Mom Blog
    Leighann of D-Mom Blog July 9, 2012 at 5:01 am | | Reply

    I agree it would make me feel a little uncomfortable and like Big Brother is watching.

    We all know that many diabetes supplies are used off label. For instance the CGM we are currently using isn’t FDA approved for children, but the company supports pediatric patients whose physician prescribes it. If someone were to tweet (or blog or FB) something about their device that was off-label could it void their warranty?!

    I’m all for pharma listening to their customer base in general, but unless a response from the company is actually solicited from a customer, I think a call from a random person at the company might be over-stepping their bounds.

  2. Mary Dexter
    Mary Dexter July 9, 2012 at 5:42 am | | Reply

    I left a comment on a blog about how frustrated I was with my CGM and they called my house. I was out of town and my daughter conveyed the message. I called them back and talked to customer service for about an hour, trouble-shooting, then talked to them some more the next day when I was back. They looked over my CareLink reports to try to figure out why I was having so much trouble.One thing they stressed was that I call them much sooner at the first sign of trouble, rather than enduring it. [My healthcare team has expressed the same wish. I'm learning, but after dealing with apathy, it's hard to switch gears and learn to rely on others]
    I know they are anticipating that the next model will be an almost closed loop artificail pancreas. New algorithm that will be able to take the data from the sensor and determine how much insulin is needed or if the pump needs to be suspended.But that means the sensor needs to be much more effective, which is their motivation to get as much feedback to ensure it does work. I would love to upgrade to this dream system when my warranty expires, but, after all I went through to get my insurance to approve this CGM, I’m afraid if I stop trying to make this work, they won’t approve the better model.
    Some days I wish I could pitch it all and walk off free like my non-diabetic friends. But I can’t. I have to rely on these people and on some manufacturer’s technology to survive. Communication, learning from each other, gives me a better chance of doing so.

  3. Mike
    Mike July 9, 2012 at 5:54 am | | Reply

    We blog & tweet because we want SOMEONE to listen. And this is a case where they are listening and reaching out.

    I understand that you feel like this is special attention given to someone with a louder mic…but I feel like this is good progress for a company. Finding and resolving issues by those with the proverbial loud mics can help them find and resolve issues for their other customers that may never speak up.

  4. Casabby
    Casabby July 9, 2012 at 6:50 am | | Reply

    Mary-You are right that you need to be careful about quitting the system. I hated the Medtronic CGMS (though I love my Revel Pump) and when I tried to switch to the Navigator after more than a year of use and several months
    of not using it, one of the reasons insurance denied me was that I hadn’t been using the CGMS that I ha. Obviously in retrospect it was very good I didn’t get the Navigator because it stopped serving the USA very quickly after that.

    A few years later after continuing to struggle with the Medtronic system, I successfully tried to get Dexcom. I wrote a three page justification to the insurance company with several photos of bruises, blood, and lumps from the Med-T sensors. Also documented crap results.

    Even with the Dexcom which is often spot-on, there are enough rogue readings that I am a long ways away from thinking I’d ever trust a closed loop system. But someday maybe….

  5. Denise
    Denise July 9, 2012 at 8:24 am | | Reply

    We should all remember that the internet is public space. The more details we post about our lives te less anonymous it becomes. I don’t mean bloggers who aren’t usually anonymous and are almost celebrities in our communities, but regular ppl go oline to be anonymous and then spill every detail of their lives. This is a good reminder that when you post publicly, it’s well, public.

  6. Shannon
    Shannon July 9, 2012 at 8:25 am | | Reply

    The other day I tweeted (and did include the @MDT_Diabetes) about an issue I was having uploading my data to Carelink. I received a call on my cell the next day, but missed it. They immediatelly called my work phone, and when I missed that one, too, they called my cell again to leave a message. I do appreciate the effort on Medtronic’s part to take care of the customers. I’ve blogged before about a short stint in which I switched companies and came back mainly FOR the customer service. But I hear what you’re saying. And as always, appreciate your candid honesty. :)

  7. Kirby Hughes
    Kirby Hughes July 9, 2012 at 2:59 pm | | Reply

    I left Medtronic because I started getting the impression that they care a whole lot more about their image now than they do their customers or their products. And they know that once a diabetic chooses a pump, changing is a pain in the butt. New pumpers may not even realize the differences available when it comes down to the features and the supplies, including total monthly cost. I was with them for nearly 20 years (started pump thrrapy with them when they were just Minimed), but their products are having more and more issues and are not made nearly as well as they used to be while the prices keep going up. Changing insulin pumps and supplies was a life changing event and I was terrified, but I am glad I made the change. I wish you’d have posted, “Medtronic, STFU, Stalker.” It’s one thing for them to monitor sites to improve their products or service, but not to make people feel like not posting about them to prevent weird phone calls. The truth and people’s opinions are important.

  8. Scott E
    Scott E July 9, 2012 at 6:46 pm | | Reply

    I tend to agree with Denise. When we post these things in public, any responses we get are fair-game. That said, when I recently tweeted about a Motor Error that I had, and like Shannon I did include Medtronic’s twitter handle in my post, I never got a call. In honesty, that could be for two reasons: either they didn’t know who I was (I only use my last initial, not my name), or in my tweet I said that I was going to call them, so they expected it.

    When I did call, the rep, who was extremely friendly, did mentions something about being careful about what we say online. It was more in a HIPAA than a DOC context, but in hindsight, I wonder if she knew that her company was starting to troll the web and wanted to subtly ask me to be more careful.

    Honestly, I don’t mind if they reply or don’t reply to these types of tweets and other social-networking media, but there has to be guidelines — maybe even an “opt in/out” option when you sign up for the pump in the first place. Otherwise, if I posted that I was considering switching to Animas (I’m not, by the way), Medtronic might start to bombard me with solicitations and special offers, and that could be irritating.

  9. john
    john August 11, 2012 at 7:10 pm | | Reply

    You guys seem to hate everything.

    yeah i hate it when business are proactive and try and help me out *after I broadcast a complaint across the internet*. If it was truly private… put it on Facebook. The whole point of twitter is that you’re sharing that message with *everyone*.

    You can hyper analyze everything to death, and guess motives, but at the end of the day they are trying to provide better service. I won’t fault them for that, even if I don’t think they were sincere enough and were trying to garner better PR.

    Between you and Amy DiabetesMine is a firehouse of “whaa-whaaaa”. Mega-bummer.

  10. I’m not getting free stuff « Rolling in the D

    [...] don’t have an online presence and don’t have that channel of communication. Mike wondered about this very situation after a Tweet led to customer-service, as he described on DiabetesMine back in [...]

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