Thursday, May 2, 2013

It's hard out here for a pump

A few weeks ago, I noticed that my poor pump was looking a little beat up. Upon closer inspection, I realized "beat up" actually meant "cracked":

See in the lower left-hand corner?

I took note of it, and planned to call Minimed.

Well, time got away from me as it's wont to do, and yesterday I found myself checking to make sure the crack wasn't any bigger. It was (the above is yesterday's version!), AND it had found a friend:

A nice T-bone crack right off the lip of the battery cap

A crack in the face of the pump doesn't seem scary, but the battery cap?! I could see that causing some major issues the next time I had to change it, so I called Minimed immediately. Lovely, lovely customer service as always, and after answering some questions a new pump was on its way to me:

This is mostly a "yay Minimed! yay non-cracked pump!" blog post celebration, yes. But... 

During the call, I was informed that I needed to return the old, cracked pump to Minimed within 14 days of receiving the replacement, or I would be charged something like $4,000. Now, I am incredibly lucky I'm under warrranty and able to just get a new pump to replace my broken one. And I am INCREDIBLY, incredibly lucky that I have the health insurance that I do that enables me to have a pump in the first place. So it's a little humbling - and scary - to be reminded of the actual cost of all the diabetic supplies and equipment I have. I know for a fact that there is no way I could afford all of it if I didn't have great insurance, and I find it a little shameful that I don't thank my lucky stars every day that I do have that insurance and that I am able to have things like pumps and CGMs. And then I shift from feeling shameful I'm not more grateful to feeling a bit pissed off that I even have to think like this - no one should have to be grateful they have access to medical care and they're able to be healthy. In a better, more perfect world, we'd all just have what we needed - luck, or insurance, or geography would have nothing to do with it.


  1. I know the feeling of being so grateful. Also, that $4000 is the cost of the REFURBISHED pump they sent you, not a brand spankin' new one (their definition of "refurbished" is a bit hazy -- the case is new because it can't be opened and re-closed, but the components inside could be old). Imagine what a new one might cost!

    Do yourself a favor... go to the last line of the status screen (press ESC) and check the software version. I've found that I've secretly gotten upgrades when I had my pump replaced.

    One more thing -- that clear case sure does look cool. I might consider that when I come due for a replacement...

  2. The title of this post made me guffaw. Oh yes, it did.