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Not only addicted to insulin but to my pump

I had a complete pump failure last Sunday.  You have to understand that over night on Sunday means Tuesday morning.

With the insurance changes coming up, I had decided to investigate another method of diabetes management.

Now, I have some issues that are probably not going to change.  I have some eating issues and I've never been able to be on a schedule.  That cuts out 90% of diabetes management method.

In fact, that probably only leaves the pump.

I've had problems with getting too insulin in my system -- and I did during the pump failure.  I took the choice of dosing every 4 hours.  One option I have been thinking of is trying one of the new long acting insulins, but I did not this round.  Even with dosing every four hours, I slipped up -- I forgot to eat lunch, or didn't even plan for it, and went low doing dog agility.  I was able to fix it, but just didn't plan for the whole incident.  It is something I should get better at, but it probably won't happen since I've been living this way for decades.


Pump Failure

The good news, is that so far, my blood sugar has been good.

Yesterday when I got home from the dog show I went to change everything out.  I got a critical failure.  The fun part, was that the Medtronic tech on the other end of the phone had no idea what that was, had never heard of that screen, and had to talk with someone else.  They were all "shrug", we have to send you a new insulin pump over night.

The definition of overnight, is Tuesday morning.

More fun.  My endo is still between offices.  Though I did send an email and I think I'll give his wife's office a call again.  They are passing the message along.  Of course, now we have no history.

Of course, the primary care can't help other than phone in a prescription for long acting insulin but then you have to get that stuff out of your system when you put the pump back on.

So I've got my phone alarm set to go off every 4 hours, I check my blood sugar and give myself an injection based on 2 year old numbers.  Of course the current numbers aren't much better.

The call got better -- He put the voice message on about returning the pump and he got disconnected.  He called me back in the middle of the message, I ignored him and just kept listening.  He called me when I tried to call him.  I lost it at that point and demanded the supervisor, who was pleasant but of course, "overnight" means Tuesday morning.

Being delivered by UPS who have already lost two insulin pumps and have destroyed uncountable Nordstrom packages.


Service Dog Issues - Recent Cyber Bullying

Last year I went to a diabetes conference sponsored by AstraZenca. At the time I was still using old, faulty, CGMS technology and a service dog.

Yesterday, a social media site posted a picture from that conference with some really nasty comments on the picture. Two different people found me from the picture and let me know. 

Here is the thing -- if you just bring something like that up to someone without telling them you did something about, yes, you too are cyber bullying.  The first posted as a comment to a Facebook public post. The second reached me via messenger and she did say she asked Facebookto pull it.

First, the service dog in question has worked as a diabetes alert dog in my classroom and when I was out in about. She has had only one issue in public and it has been solved.  We were at Love Field when a guide dog attacked her.  As a result, for a while she would not tolerate other service dogs around us, but we trained and fixed that.  

At the conference, she reminded at least one participant that they had forgot to bolus for a meal.

She has flown several times, gone to lots of conferences and teacher training with no issue. I stopped using her when they upgraded my technology to some that works most of the time. I may be losing that technology in January with my insurance. Waiting for the state legislature to stop worrying about bathrooms and to fix real problems like baiting and switching their teacher retirees. 

 


Insurance Change Update

Went to refill my blood sugar test strips.  Can't do it on the app, have to call in and get a supervisor to override even though I have pre certification, etc.

Representative told me that while someone else is filling our scripts, our actual formulary, etc won't change until January.

Not holding my breath but that will help.

I'm still waiting for Diabetes of America to come back online, but if that doesn't happen, a new endo practice is opening where my retired endo had his practice.

Still not holding breath.


Insurance Changes

Man, that was fast. Bill passed last week of May, board meets and passes insurance changes. 

On September 1, we move to CVS Caremark. I have already seen their formulary and looks like I may be going back to Novolog.  Everything else is generic and will probably have to go though precertification again. 

On January 1, we go to a high deductible plan, deductible is $3,000 with an out of pocket max of $7150.  Coverage is 80%.  Cost is $200 a month.  I think I am paying $310 now. 

Fun. 


Mystery Shopping Amusement

Interesting month mystery shopping.  I was out of the country the first week.  I over scheduled the second week to the point I decided I needed to quit.  I still have almost a week and I have over $500 of shops scheduled.  Two big money ones, quite a bit of phone and web shops.


Insurance Update and other issues

A bill passed the Texas State Legislature that is supposed to address the insurance issue.  The good news, is that changes won’t come in effect until January 1.  We are supposed to get free generic prescriptions – everything is currently generic except insulin.

Back in April, when I was at the Shreveport dog shows, I received a letter telling me that my new diabetes doctor was going out of business the Friday before my next appointment.  They said in the meantime see your primary care physician.

Shortly after that appointment was scheduled I received an email that they were opening a new office on June 1.  I haven’t heard anything since.

Went through my meds last week, packaging them using PillSuite, and discovered not only was out almost out of my cholesterol medication but that there were no refills.  Makes sense, we were supposed to relook all that at the appointment.  So I did what they said and made an appointment with my primary care physician.

Saw him yesterday.  I went off of statin drugs last year due to statin pain – may still have some vestiges of that – but my labs have slowly been drifting up.  So he added generic Crestor, lowest dose.  He also said that he was cool with writing scripts for supplies, but couldn’t help with pump dosages.  I hope he asked his office assistant if she was cool with it, because he is often cool with something, but she isn’t and it never gets to him.

All good for the next three months. 

He did tell me that if Diabetes Center of America didn’t reopen, that there were was an endochronolist office opening soon in their building.


Mystery Shopping Feeling Under Control

Now that I’ve learned that a) you can make some extra money mystery shopping and b) that is hard work, it’s under control now.  I’ve got some ideas for some apps that would help shoppers.  Just got to get the technology skills back up.

I haven’t taken a restaurant shop – though there are some clients I’m still open to.  Close, pay well and healthy food.  No fast food.

I have a check coming from an MSC from March shops yet, and I’m not doing any work for them until I get it.  Seriously, you expect me to work in March and haven’t paid me by May 20th?  They owe me almost $100 for 5 shops. They are local and pay well.  I can usually pick up between $10-$15 a shop from them and those are local shops.  Mostly healthy food shops.  They are the only MSC that owes me from March.  In fact, they are the only mystery shop that hasn’t paid me since I started in February.  I currently have an email out about that. 

Well, I lied a bit about that getting paid for everything I did.  I mystery shopped off an MSC’s app, didn’t save the receipt, and their system blurred the receipt.  I had them take me off their system.   They had dental shops and ice cream shops in the area.  No.   I didn’t lose much, I was already at that location and it was good ice cream.

After my first week of May, I’ve limited myself to web and phone shops, at home shops, and 10 miles radius. It also has to be an interesting shop.  Of course, my idea of interesting is different than most.  Yesterday I peed in a cup for $15.00.  It was across the street from my gym.

I did sign up for some grocery store shops that are a bit further, but that company pays quick and I haven’t done their grocery store shops yet.  I need to start getting on their local shops, they have a ton of those.  The first one I did was a fail, but I still got $5.00 for it, the client I was shopping accepted a phone call but didn’t make an appointment.

So I did over $900 in April and am at $340 in May so far.  Pays for some of the dog bills.


Insurance Problem

I know i won’t be listened to, but the retirement system needed to go back to the school district when they saw our costs were exceeding the intake.  The state needs to help too.

I’m a huge believer that if someone is signed up for an retirement system, the entity providing that retirement has to make sure the money is there.  It was part of the incentive to be hired.  Of course, I’ve been screwed by the state and the district at just about every turn, so I’m not completely surprised I’m being screwed on my retirement.