Abbott/Navigator Nightmare Continues

My Navigator broke January, 2010, a little over a year ago. In April, Abbott came up with the refund offer for the people waiting on replacements so I signed the paperwork and sent the Navigator and sensors back to Abbott. Abbott in turn refunded my money. I deposited the checks from Abbott on April 27th. That should have been the end of the story – I wish, but I am still being haunted by that transaction.

My insurance company paid for the Navigator in November, 2009. I did not even use it for three full months when it died. I had sensors on order when it died and because those sensors needed pre-approval, I did not stop that order. At the time, I never thought that the backorder would go on as long as it did. Abbott refunded the money in full and I returned the portion that my insurance company paid back to the insurance company as soon as Abbott’s checks cleared my bank – that was on May 6, 2010.

I lost some of my notes with exact dates when my computer crashed, but I received a DME statement sometime in the summer and my deductible had been reset. I paid CCS Medical $500 for the sensors and that was no longer showing in my total for my deductible. I decided to write a letter to my insurance company because I was now being asked to pay $500 more on my deductible because of how they handled it.

I know it was July when I talked to a guy at my insurance company because he called me and left a message the morning the EMTs carried me out of here when I zonked out. He had to make a few phone calls after he talked to me and said he would get things straightened out. He then called me back and said that CCS Medical would have to return the $500 to me. Someone would be assigned to watch this and they would be getting in touch with me.

It took a few weeks before anyone called me about it and she just asked if CCS had called me and they had not. About a month later, I got a statement for some new supplies from CCS that I owed them $330 – they owed me more than what I supposedly owed them so I should have a credit on my account. I called my insurance company. I was not able to talk to the person working on the case but was just told that they were still working on it.

After getting another statement from CCS in October, I tried calling my insurance again. This time, I asked to talk to a supervisor. He tried to call the person working on the problem and she was actually on the phone with CCS. She was supposed to call me back and she did. She told me that CCS agreed that I was owed the money back but they wanted proof from Abbott that Abbott actually received the Navigator back. She had already requested that from Abbott. Because we were getting close to January and my deductible being reset again, I agreed that CCS could credit my account and I would start the year off with a $220 credit with them.

In December, I received collection calls three days in a row from CCS. I explained that CCS owed me $500 and the $330 I owed them would be offset against the $500. My account was apparently not marked that they were working on something with my insurance company. I was sick when they called me and did not call my insurance company to let them know that I was now getting collection calls because of this.

Last Wednesday, I got another collection call from CCS. I again explained that they owed me $500, which was more than what I owed them. As soon as I hung up from CCS, I called my insurance company. I told the person I talked to that someone was working on this but I did not have her name. She was able to tell from the notes who the person was and then she said, “Amber hasn’t worked in 107 days, I hope she wasn’t fired.” I think my heart stopped. I asked if I could speak to a supervisor.

The supervisor got on the phone after looking at the notes. She actually said that Amber talked to someone at the supply company on January 20th. So much for not working in 107 days! The supervisor talked to CCS and now instead of wanting proof from Abbott that I returned the stuff to them, CCS wants the actual product back. I returned that stuff in April. I am sure that stuff has been sitting in some landfill for awhile now and CCS getting the product back is going to be impossible.

The supervisor called Abbott to see if they could do anything and she was told that someone from corporate would have to call her. That is the standard line Abbott gives out and corporate does not return phone calls. That is going to be another dead end.

I tried to call the supervisor at my insurance company yesterday and was not able to talk to her. I was told that she was waiting for Abbott to call her back – she will be waiting forever for that call! I decided to write another letter to my insurance company. Even if you don’t start the clock ticking until July when they responded to my letter from last summer, this has been going on for 8 months now. I think I have been more than patient. I gave my insurance company 30 days to resolve the issue. I have several backup plans depending on what their next step is. I also told my insurance company that I no longer want the credit on my account with CCS. Unless CCS ends up doing the right thing in the next 30 days, I doubt that I will be placing another order with them.

CCS, I think you need to re-visit Customer Service 101. This is not how you keep customers. In December when I received the first collection calls, I was told that it was not possible to flag my account so that I did not get collection calls. I don’t believe that. I worked in accounting. I dealt with receivables and understand the process. At the very least, there should have been notes on my account that someone in management was working on the issue with my insurance company. According to the people that placed the collection calls, there were no notes to that effect. According to my insurance company, CCS agreed in October that the money would be refunded to me so I should never have received collection calls in December and February. I certainly should not have received collection calls three days in a row, especially when I told the first person that someone in management at CCS was working on the issue.

I appreciate the fact that CCS worked with my doctor to get the paperwork submitted for me to get the Navigator in the first place. Abbott originally sent my paperwork to another supply company and they would not even try to get approval. They said that it was not covered. My insurance had to reject it before I could appeal. Having a CGMS has literally been a lifesaver for me and I will be eternally grateful to CCS for not closing that door when I needed to work with a supply company to get the paperwork submitted. As most people are aware, my insurance turned down the original request for the Navigator and I was able to win my appeal. That is what customer service is about – helping your customer. When I decided to get the Dexcom and the Animas Ping, I had no problems telling both Dexcom and Animas that I wanted to go thru CCS to get those items. When you have good customer service, you get customer loyalty in return.

I don’t agree with how this whole situation was handled, but I am not a big company like Abbott Diabetes Care, I am not a huge insurance company and I am not a well known supply company like CCS. I am diabetic on disability struggling to get the supplies I need to stay alive. I am not the one that caused this problem and I should not be the one that has to suffer because of it.

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4 thoughts on “Abbott/Navigator Nightmare Continues

  1. I am sorry, but CCS is wrong in demanding the product back from you. I would be reporting this to someone. How the heck do they know it was stored properly, not frozen etc. I am sorry, I think they OWE you the 500 bucks but don’t want to admit it. Jerks.

  2. Ugh!! Makes me want to scream just reading about your experience. I had a very bad experience like that w/ my first pump. Ins co pre-approved 80%, then they paid for 100% of it for some reason. Then they tried to collect 100% from me. Told them I would only pay the 20%…my part. After beating my head against the wall with them for a year, I filed a complaint with the state insurance board. They resolved it in my favor. Game over! I totally feel for you and agree that we should not have to spend hours and hours trying to sort out messes we did not cause in the first place.

    • Carol, I am glad that you were able to get your insurance issue resolved in your favor. I have a feeling I am going to have to end up asking for help from some government agencies to get this resolved – it has been dragging on too long. I did give them another 30 days but that is it if they can’t get is resolved by then.

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