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Remote INR taking over Coaguchek

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DachsieMom

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I am curious if others have experienced issues with the new owner of coaguchek. First, they suspended my account because I forget to test three times (not consecutive). Now, instead of being charged 250 per month, of which I pay 101 per month after insurance discount, it increased to 880 per month. I cannot even get a phone number for their billing dept. the rep with whom I spoke was very nice, but even she did not have a number. I’m still paying the insured rate of 101 a month, but want to address the pre-discounted rate. It’s ridiculous that increased almost four times the amount!
 

catwoman

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DachsieMom,
Roche is still the manufacturer of all CoaguChek machines.
It sounds as though you may be dealing with a 3rd party anticoagulation management vendor.
Have you contacted your insurance company to find out what business they are paying? An EOB for your insurance may give you some info if you check paid claims.

I have a CoaguChek that I bought new on eBay in 2014. I also buy my strips on eBay. I test every 7-10 days. Have been on warfarin since June 2003. Got my first INR monitor on Nov. 26, 2003. I have never had to report INRs to a 3rd party.
 

Eva

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What kind of insurance do you have?!
Normally a card with contact info is sent together with the machine.
How about the insurance form. It should mention name of the billing company.
I personally found it cheaper and less hectic to buy my own machine and strips. My insurance didn’t accept Roche. And Alere wanted me to pay over $10 every time I test based on min 4 tests.
Note: Roche sold their “patient” contracting company in June to a new contractor.
keep after them.
Good luck.
 

LondonAndy

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if you have the machine, just buy your strips and do your own tests
Dachsiemum, following on from what Catwoman and Pellicle have said: test strips are about $6 each, so if you use 1 per week that's $24 per month. If the management company is advising you on dose changes then clearly it is reasonable for them to charge for that, but how on earth do they get to $880? Here in the UK we could buy a new INR machine every month and have change ....
 

slipkid

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I am curious if others have experienced issues with the new owner of coaguchek. First, they suspended my account because I forget to test three times (not consecutive). Now, instead of being charged 250 per month, of which I pay 101 per month after insurance discount, it increased to 880 per month. I cannot even get a phone number for their billing dept. the rep with whom I spoke was very nice, but even she did not have a number. I’m still paying the insured rate of 101 a month, but want to address the pre-discounted rate. It’s ridiculous that increased almost four times the amount!
I have not had problems like you mentioned yet, but I have not gotten a bill from the new provider of the "service" yet either afaik. I did ask the old Roche testing service (whatever they were called I 4get now off the top of my head) and they said nothing should change with my charges but guess I will see.

I noticed that the new provider uses the exact same verbage on all of their recorded messages that Roche used to use except that it is a different voice now who recorded these messages.

The whole transition was supposed to be seamless and no changes with billing or anything else, even using the same phone # to call the results in.

I've not tried to reach the billing dept of the new provider yet.
 

Protimenow

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I agree with the others. I've been taking Warfarin since 1991, and self-testing since 2009.

For nearly all of that time (since 2009), I've also self-managed --- initially using advice that I got from this forum. Occasionally, I'd get dosing advice from a clinic or doctor's office - and usually ignored it because it was wrong. (For example, I had a pharmacist who does anticoagulation management for my HMO telling me to skip a dose because my INR was 3.4 -- before even asking WHY I was taking warfarin. I had a clinic that mishandled my blood and got a 7.1 that told me to INCREASE my dose).

It comes down to this - you have to be your own advocate for your health -- and doing your own testing and management or trusting a professional who knows what the hell he or she is doing) are the best ways to do this.

(The services may avoid taking responsibility for your dosing by sending your results in to your doctor, and sending you a message that they get from the doctor back to you. Maybe your doctor wouldn't mind getting a weekly call and eventually getting back to you if any dosing changes are necessary).

But, as I said before, there are good resources (and Pellicle) on this forum who can help you to manage your dosing.

You don't need these expensive services - and it's painful to see how much they screw the insurance carriers for loaning you a meter and sending you strips.
 

DachsieMom

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Thanks everyone. I still have not been able to reach the company.
I have a great Coumadin clinic - they call me back same day with changes and I don’t pay them. It’s my cardiologist office.
I’m in the US and it seems difficult to get strips on my own. I also worry about getting recalled strips, etc. from EBay. however this new company doesn’t seem so great so who knows?
 

MdaPA

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I still have not been able to reach the company.
Here is RemoteINR's main number: 1-800-780-0675. Press 3 for information on enrolling in INR services.
Here is their website:
RemoteINR
As others have mentioned, it can be more expensive to use their services, depending on your insurance, versus if going though ebay and the like for the meter and supplies. My wife uses their reporting service to obtain strips, lances and support for the meter they provided her with. She has not noticed a difference between this company since the switch form CoaguChek other than we have also not received a bill yet.
 

Sheenas7

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Here is RemoteINR's main number: 1-800-780-0675. Press 3 for information on enrolling in INR services.
Here is their website:
RemoteINR
As others have mentioned, it can be more expensive to use their services, depending on your insurance, versus if going though ebay and the like for the meter and supplies. My wife uses their reporting service to obtain strips, lances and support for the meter they provided her with. She has not noticed a difference between this company since the switch form CoaguChek other than we have also not received a bill yet.
Same here.
 

Protimenow

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I wouldn't be particularly worried about the strips you get on eBay.

If the seller doesn't show the expiration date on the strips, don't buy them. (One unscrupulous seller was trying to sell strips that expired in 2018 or 2019 -- these were listed as NEW - technically, I guess they were - but they were also EXPIRED.) I think that, at this point, any strips that expire in 2021 will NOT be involved in the recall. The recalled strips have all expired by now.

When I used - and I now use - CoaguChek XS strips, they were all bought on eBay (and I was given some strips without a code chip by one of the nice people on this forum - I don't know where she bought them).

eBay strips haven't been a problem for me.
 

DachsieMom

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So I finally heard back from Remote INR. They raised the price from 250 every 4 tests to 880 every 4 tests (before insurance discount). I will still pay $101 every 4 tests after the insurance discount (I pay this $101 out of pocket due to my high deductible) but that’s crazy.
 

pellicle

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So I finally heard back from Remote INR. ... will still pay $101 every 4 tests after the insurance discount (I pay this $101 out of pocket due to my high deductible) but that’s crazy.
do what we do ... self test, self manage. Its only the first step which is daunting.

I for one can certainly help you move into the knowledge you need for self management if you want, but I'm sure there are others here too.

As many have already said, nothing wrong with buying strips from eBay, it is after all just a market place and has pretty good checks and balances. How would you know how well the insurance company handles strips anyway?
 

Eva

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My Medicare HMO and Blue Shield denied my request to deal with Roche where my out of pocket was to be about $3.99 for each test (minimum 3 tests/month) plus free test strips and free testing machine. It was very reasonable, but my insurance is contracted with Alere which wants to charge me over $40/month ($480/year).
So, I bought my own machine ($800 full payment and the strips for 48 weeks is $225 max). I have been managing my INR since 2018. so, for me this less hassle and overall is cheaper!
 

Protimenow

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That kind of exploitation of insurance companies should backfire on this unbelievably greedy company. Before the **** hits the fan over this price jump, I suggest (as I think I may have done when you said that your deductible was $110), you should strongly consider self testing and self management.

Even with that deductible, you're being badly exploited - and your insurance company is being raped.

If you need help managing your INR, there are people, and charts, that can help you get a handle on it. (Pellicle is a great source of information and advice for self management). Your other challenge may be to convince your MD that you're able to self test and self manage. You'll need to do this in order to get prescriptions for warfarin. (There was a time, years ago, when I had to order warfarin from India - I was able to do this without a prescription).
 

DachsieMom

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My deductible is about $5000 annually, which is why I pay 100 percent of all costs up to that amount, and then 30 percent thereafter (plus premiums). So I pay about $1200 per year on monitoring.
I have asked my doctor about self monitoring. He didn’t understand although frankly, I just call coaguchek and they fax the doctor’s office so not sure how that’s any different than me calling directly. I may ask again but I’m concerned about always being able to secure a steady supply from eBay. Also, how would you learn of recalls?
 

pellicle

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I may ask again but I’m concerned about always being able to secure a steady supply from eBay. Also, how would you learn of recalls?
being concerned about the future is a bit like avoiding buying a house in case there is a market crash (which is btw a much worse risk). I'm worried that the government will introduct negative interest rates, but I haven't sold all my stuff yet.

One can't predict the future with accuracy, but the chances of there being NO supply of Coagucheck strips on the internet is seriously not a significant risk.

as to learning about recalls ... visit here? But again recalls is such an insignificant issue that in the only recall I've ever heard of involved only specific batches and even then only influenced specific INR ranges. If you were in a normal range then there was nothing wrong with the reading.
 

Protimenow

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The recalled CoaguChek XS strips have all expired by now. At this time, I don't think that there are ANY recalled CoaguChek XS strips.

Paying as much as you do for something that you can easily do from home doesn't make much sense to me. Even a new meter is about $800 or so - and strips cost around $5 each. Pellicle and others can help you to self manage your dosing.

The only reason you may not want to self test and self manage is if you have a doctor who doesn't understand what you're doing and who refuses to prescribe warfarin. Keep a spreadsheet of your INR, date and dosage, and you may be able to convince your doctor that you've got a firm handle on the process. If your doctor still won't prescribe warfarin, you can find another doctor, or consider getting it from a foreign pharmacy. (For a while, with no medical or drug insurance, I bought my warfarin from an Indian company -- it was the same that I now get from the pharmacy).
 
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