When Good Insulin Pumps Go Bad (Part 3)

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OK, this is the last installment in my three-part series on my insulin pump biting the dust. If you’ve made it to this week’s blog without having read my previous two entries, you can grab some much-needed context by reading part 1 and part 2.

When we left off, I’d just replaced my insulin pump’s battery cap in the hopes that a faulty cap may have been triggering the short-circuit, or whatever it was that was causing my insulin pump to shut down and restart at various times. For the remainder of that day and well into the late morning of the next day, it appeared that, with the help of the Deltec Cozmo representative, we’d solved the problem. The battery cap was the culprit!

I decided I would leave the faulty cap off of the pump, and instead use the original cap and go blood glucose monitorless (although I have a stand-alone backup monitor, it doesn’t directly communicate with the pump, which is one of the benefits of the Deltec Cozmo, and why I chose it when I was first picking out a pump).

By the way, I know that my audience here… that not all of you are insulin pumpers, and that not all of you who pump go the Deltec Cozmo route. So, for those of you who’ve never looked at the Deltec Cozmo insulin pump, who may be saying “huh?” to all of this talk of battery caps and CoZmonitors and so on, here’s a simple visual that I hope helps.

About noon, then, on the second day of my insulin pump seemingly back in the realm of normalcy, I get the follow-up call from Smiths Medical. The representative wants to make sure everything’s going OK. I tell him it is, and he says that they’ll get a replacement battery cap in the mail.

Problem solved. Or so I thought.

Fifteen minutes after hanging up the phone, I feel the insulin pump on my hip vibrate its two quick, buzzbuzz start-up tones. Yes, that’s right: It had just powered down and started back up again with the original battery cap.

I get back on the phone, this time with a different representative (David, the person with whom I’d been speaking, was, to my chagrin, helping someone else). The woman I spoke with apologized for the continued malfunctioning and said that they’d get a new pump out to me overnight. All I had to do was make sure I sent the old pump back within 15 days.

When she was going over the shipping information with me (I had her send it to my office because a signature was required), she said, “And you want the volcano black again, right?” Well, wait just a minute. I can choose a different color? I mean, I know that Smiths Medical is pulling out of the diabetes market, so I expected to find out that black was all I could get.

Another by the way: In all honesty, I didn’t expect the high level of customer service I received by a division of a company that is on its way to extinction. But to Smiths Medical’s credit, they went above and beyond in helping me resolve my problem.

So when I asked the rep about a different color, she told me, “Well, we’ll see what we can do. What color do you want?” I hadn’t thought about what color. I remembered from the Web site that there was a blue and a green. “Green,” I said. Yes, the green. She said she’d put that on the paperwork and if they had one, I’d get it. If they didn’t have green, would I want a blue pump? I said yes, yes I would.

The next day my new pump arrived via UPS. Not only is the case tropical green, it’s also translucent, which I really think is neat.

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