ordering supplies

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Eva Lou
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 3437
   Posted 10/11/2007 10:30 AM (GMT -6)   
hi again! So I called my insurance comp. just to check on the procedure for ordering ostomy supplies- they are covered in full, & they have a list of providers who you order from, not the manufacturers. I guess the providers are medical supply places. Does this sound right to you all? Do any of you order direct from the manufacturers, or is this generally how it's done? And I'm assuming/hoping that the hospital gives me a fairly large stash of bags & wafers when I leave- will they?!?! I know our local VNA will come out within a day or 2 to see how I'm doing. Did your home nurse help you order your supplies at first?  
diagnosed '02
meds-
Asacol- 8 tabs/day
Remicade infusions
Imuran- 100mgs/day
Prednisone- 60mgs/day


JudyK89
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 1986
   Posted 10/11/2007 10:39 AM (GMT -6)   
Yes, this is how it's done. Most manufacturers won't let you buy direct, with the exception of a few who make customized products for patients.

You should go home with a "kit" to get you started. Try to arrange a visit from an ET (Enterstomal Therapist) nurse who can help you find the products that are best suited for your needs and she/he will also help you figure out how much to order based on your wear time. These nurses specialize in this and most (not all) home health nurses just have the basic info on how to change it etc. and won't be able to address any problems you may have that are personal to you.

You're a lucky girl to have your supplies covered in full. Mine used to be, but they cover less and less each year. Maybe it's time to change my insurance, lol.

A little tip for you: (please bear with me if I've told you this before) When you figure out how many of each item you will be using in a months time, make sure you order extra. You never know when something may go wrong and you end up using more supplies than normal, and you want to stock up at least a months supply to get you through any type of emergency.

I wish I would have had this site before my surgery, I didn't know anything and learned it all the hard way, lol. Good luck and keep asking questions.
Judy
49 years old, CD since I was a child.    
Six resection surgeries, permanent ostomy, adverse reactions to Remicade finally off of Prednisone, back on 6MP, hoping for a long remission from this last surgery. 
 
 


Eva Lou
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 3437
   Posted 10/11/2007 10:50 AM (GMT -6)   
Our VNA does have ET nurses, & the woman I spoke with on the phone told me that all the nurses are trained in stoma care- but like you said, I bet that's just changing it, etc. I guess you get a visit from a "regular" nurse the first time, then they arrange for one of the ET nurses to follow-up, as the ET nurses don't work a regular rotation schedule. My insurance is ok- they have a maximum of $2500/per calendar year on the supplies though- I have no clue how many bags that will buy me! I also like to stockpile- you should've seen the boxes and boxes of medicated enemas I recently dumped down our drain.... I'm hoping to lay in a few months worth of supplies if I can. I always get paranoid about losing health insurance too, which is sort of crazy, but... one of those irratiobal fears. Thanks for the reply!
diagnosed with UC '02
meds-
Asacol- 8 tabs/day
Remicade infusions
Imuran- 100mgs/day
Prednisone- 60mgs/day
nothing works anymore.....
surgery date- November 14th!!!!!!


JudyK89
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 1986
   Posted 10/11/2007 11:01 AM (GMT -6)   
Mine has the same maximum. It's going to depend on how well your stoma is placed, how nice it's shaped, and what kind of stool output you're going to have (liquidy, acidic vs. formed) that will determine what kind and how many appliances you'lll need and how much it will cost each month.

My stoma was horrible for years and I used to run out of coverage by May each year. It got quite expensive. Now I have a much longer wear time, and I'm hoping to stretch my coverage much longer into the year.

Remember the suppliers are always behind in billing, so while they let you order in October, you may get a bill from your June order saying your out of benefits and you owe them money. My insurance dictates how much they can charge me for what isn't covered now (the same or less than my insurance pays), but it used to be that I had to complain every year because once my benefits ran out they would try to charge me the overinflated rates they initially charge the insurance company.

Don't ever be afraid to call them and ask for a price break. If they kept up the billing in a timely fashion, you would have known you were out of benefits and could have ordered supplies from a much less expensive supplier (and you can get supplies pretty cheap on the internet, you're just locked into getting them from certain suppliers if you want your insurance to pay).
Judy
49 years old, CD since I was a child.    
Six resection surgeries, permanent ostomy, adverse reactions to Remicade finally off of Prednisone, back on 6MP, hoping for a long remission from this last surgery. 
 
 


Amey
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 942
   Posted 10/11/2007 12:48 PM (GMT -6)   
Yep, yep that is usually how it is done. I asked my ostomy nurse to hook me up before I left the hospital. She brought me lots of samples! It never hurts to ask a question...that's my philosophy!

Amey
Amey
 
 
Ileostomy 8/2007
Revised Coletomy/ Reset Anastimosis 2006
Revised Colectomy/ Obstructions 2005
Sub-total Colectomy 2001
 
Prov. 16: 20 Whoso trusteth in the Lord, happy is he.
 
Zelnorm, Colace, Motilium, Citrate of Magnesium, Nexium, Amitiza, Potassium, Magnesium, Miralax, Milk of Magnesium, Corgard, Glycerin Suppositories, Sorbitol, Bentyl, Senokot


justjenjen
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2003
Total Posts : 518
   Posted 10/11/2007 1:39 PM (GMT -6)   
Did all or most of you have home visits? I did not and just wondered...

summerstorm
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 6571
   Posted 10/11/2007 5:10 PM (GMT -6)   
i had a home visit from nurses that were not ET's actually the first time it was an RN, and the second one was an LPN, who suggested to me that i poke a hole in my bag to let the air out. I just called them and told them not to come back, lol. Really what those nurses are there for is to check your incisions and your pulse and stuff, and since my husband is a nurse, i didn't see any reason to pay for that.
The hosptial will send you home with some stuff, but it might not be the stuff you want, they will probably put clear bags on you, they have to be able to see the stuff.
My husband actually does my ordering for me, and i always try to keep lots of stuff, like they said, younever know when something will happen, like getting your flange stuck on your towel when you are trying to put it on, lol! or you could get a bad bag, or mess up, or there's lots of things that can happen.

justjenjen
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2003
Total Posts : 518
   Posted 10/11/2007 6:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Isn't amazing how clueless non-ET nurses are?? My hubby is a nurse and just watching me and on the rare occasion helping me has helped him to be a better nurse to his ostomy patients. He seems to be the only one who can put a bag on correctly!

summerstorm
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 6571
   Posted 10/11/2007 7:45 PM (GMT -6)   
my husband had done it a few times before, he works in the ER and on transport and had had to change them at his job, and for a while he changed it for me, i didn't do it at all. The nurse that wanted me to poke a hole in the bag said that the next time she came we were gonna change the bag together, and i thought, um no lol.
EvaLou, be careful what those nurses tell you, they aren't ETs after all and they might tell you something that isn't right, just because that isn't their specialtiy

peggy113
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 1998
   Posted 10/11/2007 8:22 PM (GMT -6)   
Eva Lou,
I also think it is a good idea to have a supply of products just in case of emergency.  But I just want to remind you that you may change what type of wafer, bag, different brand, etc..... so, don't stockpile too much until you are sure of what you will be using.  Be sure to ask for samples if there is something out there you have seen in a catalog that you want to try.
 
Best of luck.  BTW - great questions!
 
Peggy
      
Diagnosed with CD in 1979, many resections and meds
Perm Ileostomy July 1984 at Cleveland Clinic
Disease free since surgery 
 


Eva Lou
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 3437
   Posted 10/12/2007 7:49 AM (GMT -6)   
I got a coloplast catalogue this AM-my God, the array of items is staggering! I had called to ask for samples, & the cust. serv. rep. told me I was better off waiting until I actually had my stoma so that I would be more informed as to what it is I wanted. From what I've seen, I'd like to be able to use a 2 piece, drainable, opaque!!!!! system. That seems to be the easiest. I guess maybe a couple different sizes of bags as needed. Summerstorm- I cannot believe that nurse telling you to poke a hole in your bag! I have a feeling I am going to come in contact with a lot of uninformed medical personnel. As it is, I work a desk job in a health clinic, with many doctors, nurses, PA's, etc. and I know for a fact that maybe one of them has actually even seen a live working stoma! Thankfully they're accepting of the whole deal, but in reality I think very few have a clue as to the care & "workings" of one. Now have many of you found that you are running out of supplies before the end of the calendar year? Insurance wise- if I have that $2500 max per year, will that really last me a whole year? Hhm!  

diagnosed with UC '02
meds-
Asacol- 8 tabs/day
Remicade infusions
Imuran- 100mgs/day
Prednisone- 60mgs/day
nothing works anymore.....
surgery date- November 14th!!!!!!


JudyK89
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 1986
   Posted 10/12/2007 9:18 AM (GMT -6)   
Eva Lou,

Try and get some samples of the cloth covered pouches if you're going 2 piece. Makes a big difference in comfort.

My daughter is an ER nurse and had to help me off and on after my last surgery with wound care and ostomy care. She didn't know anything about either when she started (except knowing mommy had an ostomy most of her life). Now when they have an ostomate patient come in they look for her because she's the "expert", lol. She's also trying to get on the committe that orders the products because she doesn't like the quality and types of ostomy and wound care products they use. She knows the difference after seeing what the nurses brought versus what I order.


Judy
49 years old, CD since I was a child.    
Six resection surgeries, permanent ostomy, adverse reactions to Remicade finally off of Prednisone, back on 6MP for maintenance, hoping for a long remission from this last surgery. 
 
 


Ohio43
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 212
   Posted 10/13/2007 5:40 PM (GMT -6)   
Eva Lou, I'm not sure if you've left the hospital, but try and get a catalog from them. I received one for Edgepark, but order my supplies through Sterling Medical. The catalog is very helpful in comparing products. I was told my HomeReach Nurses were all trained in ostomy care, but I'll tell you what, each person has a different view point on how and what should be used. I found out that I was allergic to the Hollister brand wafers and their products - especially the paste. One of the HomeReach Nurses put the paste all over my wafer and then put it on my tummy. My allergic reaction was so bad that my skin was weeping. Another nurse thought that all the wafers from the manufacturers used the same adhesive. The nurses also thought I had a yeast infection. I finally went to wound center to see an ET Nurse who has been practicing in the ostomy field for 30 plus years. She immedicately could tell it was an allergic reaction.

You can contact the manufacturers directly for samples of anything - Coloplast, Convatec, Hollister, New Hope, etc. They'll all send you what you'd like. Then you order the supplies from you medical equipment company.

Good luck!
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