Pump company support

I am curious what people think about their pump company’s helpdesk / tech support.

I know FUD has users with Medtronic, Animas, Tandem, and OmniPod, so almost all of them are represented here.

A year ago, I was impressed with the OmniPod help desk. I could explain a scenario with the pump, and they would always have a working setup available and they could plug in the exact numbers and basically do the same thing I was doing and be able to see it, and provide an answer. I actually uncovered a few bugs in their PDM formulas and called to report them, and they were able to reproduce it and write them up for getting fixed.

Recently though, I have been very disappointed in their help desk. They no longer have a pod connected to their PDM.

For those if you not familiar with the OmniPod system, that would be like Dexcom trying to do tech support and only having a receiver available and no sensor data. Or a pump company trying to support a pump and their help desk only having the infusion set, and not the pump.

It makes no sense that the people answering the phones for OmniPod’s help desk no longer have a complete working system for troubleshooting. They all have PDM’s at their desk, how hard could it be to have a pod connected to it?

The other thing I have noticed is a pretty long hold time before you get someone to take your call. Last year is was immediate. But recently it has been much longer, sometimes 10 minutes, depending on when you call.

They are good about replacing pods. Never have trouble with that, they send them out whenever there is a problem. But I wish they were prepared to do a bit more than just ship pods. That’s kind of where they seem to have gone lately.

Just my opinion. What’s your opinion on your pump company’s support?

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We haven’t had to contact them lately, but the last time we did (about an error pod), we didn’t have to wait long to talk to someone and get a pod replacement sent. Are you asking other questions not pertaining to error pods? If so, what types of questions are you trying to ask them? I don’t think I’ve ever had questions for them? My questions have always pertained to PODs that errored out. They would explain what the cause might be, then tell me they’ll ship me another.

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We talked with Animas ping support once when we had a scary pump malfunction. While they were very responsive and fast, they couldn’t actually help us in explaining what went on. So I’m not sure if that was all that helpful. I’m guessing certain types of malfunctions require some knowledge of the mechanical workings of these pumps, and its hard to imagine a typical customer support person being up on all those nuances.


A lot of it is just reporting problems. Here is an example of a call I made.

When you are using a temp basal %, the temp basal amount displayed in:
My Records>Insulin Delivery>Basal
is not always the amount that is actually delivered.

For example, if your basal was 0.55 units, and you set your temp basal to be 15% less, the display shows 0.46 units.

But we know a pod can’t deliver 0.46 units!!! Since it is incremented in 0.05 units, in this case it would have to deliver either 0.45 or 0.50 units.

The display should show the amount actually being delivered, not the amount that is mathematically calculated from multiplying the temp basal %. (15% less than 0.55 is 0.4675, which is what they show as 0.46).

Anyway, in this instance the pump records are not correct. You can try this yourself to see it.

But try explaining that to a tech support person who doesn’t have a working system setup to see it! The guy actually said to me, “Okay, we can get that pod replaced for you…” OMG! It’s not a pod problem!


@ErinElizabeth actually pointed this out to me…that the system “rounds” at times. When we’re doing 95% more temp basal on a .10 / hr regimen, the ACTUAL math should work out to .195, but since the system can’t, or doesn’t work with numbers on the 3rd decimal point, it just rounds to .20 / hr. Even though it should be .195.

I think that’s just an issue with how it’s designed and they need to work on making the PODs capable of being that finely tuned?

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I think in this instance, it should display what is being given, rather than what the math turns out to be!


well, so at least with the Animas Ping, I remember asking about just this question when we were new users – i.e. if its minimum increment for a bolus or basal/hr is 0.025 units, then how can it deliver a 20% reduced temp basal on 0.05 units/hr? Well, at least with this particular model, it turned out that it delivered insulin in much smaller increments enough times across the hour for basal in such a way that it actually can deliver smaller squirts of insulin than their smallest bolus or basal increment – like in your example, say 0.46 units over an hour.

Not sure how the OmniPod works though, and I know this math problem crops us for us with openAPS and the Medtronic 722, because of how it delivers insulin for basal and bolus.

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The pods can only deliver 0.05 at a time. So the only way it could average 0.46 units per hour would be over the course of a 5 hour delivery period. So if you set it for 15% less like in the example, they can’t really say it is delivering 0.46 units per hour unless your temp basal was 5 hours or 10 hours.

But all that aside, my point was simply that there is no way anyone could address that issue without being able to see it on a PDM. So I say to Insulet, “Come on, give your help desk people a few pods to use!”

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