Forum

Horrible experience with Healthcare at Home

I haven’t posted in a while (too busy, weirdly enough). But I wanted to describe my recent experience with Healthcare at Home (drug delivery company) and see whether anyone has had anything similar with them.

I get Fampyra delivered by Healthcare at Home (HAH) every four weeks. They rang me a couple of weeks ago to arrange a delivery. The first day I was going to be in was last Thursday so we agreed they would deliver between 8am and 12 noon on that day. I’ve been on Fampyra for more than a year and they’ve always delivered when they said they would. This time however, when 12 came there had been no delivery so I rang to find out what was happening. The person I spoke to told me that they had a record that I should get a delivery but the drug had not been loaded on any of their delivery vans so I would not be getting it. They had no explanation for this but they said they would reshedule the delivery for Monday (yesterday).

I was much more nervous about the delivery this time, so at 8am yesterday I rang the number where you can find out what time your delivery will be. I was on hold for twenty minutes and then I gave up and rang the customer service line. After about ten minutes on hold there, I got through to Elaine who told me that they had a record that I should get a delivery but the drug had not been loaded on any of their delivery vans. I was very upset about this and started to cry (demonstrates that I am not always calm and philosophical when things go wrong). Elaine said she would try to arrange a courier to get the medication to me. She said I wouldn’t be charged for this but she couldn’t promise she would be able to get hold of a courier.

Four hours later I had heard nothing so I rang HAH to see what was happening. I spent quite a long time on hold and then the person I spoke to couldn’t get in touch with Elaine but promised to find out what was happening. A couple of hours later, no-one had got back to me so I rang HAH again. I was on hold for quite a while and then spoke to a third person, who was able to tell me that the Fampyra had been ‘checked out’ but couldn’t get in touch with Elaine and couldn’t tell me if a courier had been booked. They promised to find out what was happening and ring me back. I agreed that I wouldn’t keep ringing them. However, a couple of hours later I still had heard nothing and by now it was 5pm and I was scared they would all go home. I rang HAH again and was put on hold for at least ten minutes. While I was on hold the doorbell rang and it was the courier with my Fampyra.

HAH seem like a drug company delivery company that can’t deliver drugs and I’m changing my supplier to Bupa Homecare. I would be very interested to hear whether other people have had these kinds of experiences with either company.

I have my Fampyra delivered by BUPA. They’ve never failed to deliver, although the system is cumbersome . Send script. 'Phone to ask for delivery. Another office 'phones for credit card payment . This office 'phones back to confirm payment complete. First office 'phones to arrange delivery day. Day before agreed date text is received to confirm delivery time. Told you it was cumbersome ! Anyway, my Fampyra has always been on time, and the staff very pleasant and obliging. Cost is £191.50. I used to get my Fampyra from Dickson’s Pharmacy in Glasgow at a charge of £240 until I discovered that they were supplied by BUPA and simply adding a £50 handling charge.

Hi Sewing chick,

I had exactly the same experience with HAH before Xmas. They failed to deliver my copaxone,we rearranged the delivery date and the same thing happened. Trouble was I was going abroad the following day and only had enough meds for a few days. In desperation after getting fobbed off with excuses I rang my copaxone nurse and left a message and my MS nurse to ask what I shoud do ie inject every two days. My MS nurse bless her got back to me and told me she would phone HAH this was at 5.30pm and I was due at Gatwick at 9am the following day. Anyway she insisted they send a courrier with the meds that night. By 10.15 nothing had arrived and I was resigned to not getting them but at 11pm the courrier turned up. It was a veyr stressful day.

Then after Xmas they turned up out of the blue luckily I was in with the meds and sharps bin which should have been delivered before Xmas. Since then they have been ok but my Copaxone nurse gave me a different number to call if I should have any problems again which gets through to the MS nurse at HAH directly.

Fingers crossed there will be no future probs but after reading your experience I’m not so sure.

Cat

You ought to tell your MS team, as they want feedback. Oddly enoough i had trouble last thursday with a delivery. There search engine for ETA didn’t recognise my personal number. I called them up and the guy had poor english and didn’t understand me either. He said it was too complicated! Finally after speaking very slowly he got it, and said the computer system wasn’t working, i’d gathered that. Anyway, they did turn up.

Hi there I’m new to this site but glad I dropped on this subject. I recently asked my neuro if I could try the months free trial of fampyra I say recently it was actually last October! Anyway my neuro told me yes I could try it but its complicated, he then said he couldn’t prescribe it from my windsor hospital I would have to go to his clinic at charring cross so I had to wait until January to get an appointment there, when I went to my appointment he told me rules have changed about providing NHS patients with private prescriptions so he couldn’t do it but he would have to look into how he could do it, I asked how long this would take and he said 3 weeks that was 6 weeks ago and I still haven’t heard anything, I’ve had no joy from charring cross ms nurses or his secretary so I contacted my own ms nurse and she’s trying to find out whats happening. To say I’m frustrated is an understatement, I actually rang bupa homecare myself as this is where he said it would come from, they were very helpful and said he just needed to send the prescription and they do the rest. I wonder if any of you ladies or gents had this experience with trying to get fampyra or this private prescription change he’s talking about? I know I will have to pay privately for the fampyra if I decide to carry on with it but I just want to try it! Also have you had good results? I know it doesn’t work for everyone. Thanks for any replies

Hi

I had a similar problem with them last week. I also spoke to Elaine several times. My medication - I am on Avonex - had been ordered but was not out for delivery and she had no idea why.

I first expected delivery on the Monday between 8-1 - they phoned at 12.30 to say the driver had not been able to find my house so re-arranged delivery for the follwing Monday. Never arrived - they then promised it on Tuesday and then on Wednesday - again ordered but not despatched. I was due to take it on the Wednesday. In the end they couriered it to me - I only knew this for definite at 9.15pm - it arrived an hour later. Stressful! The courier said his previous delivery (the night before) had arrived at a lady’s house at 1.30 in the morning!

I have only been on betaferon, supplied by hah for two months and the meds del have always been ok, but I rang last week to ask for a new travel sharps bin and was told that they didn’t have any in stock?, they were supposed to send one with the last delivery but although the invoice said small bin, they sent the big one. They couldn’t help me with a new one, didn’t know when they were getting any more in and I had to buy one from my pharmacy. Not expensive, just a couple of pounds but I thought it strange that hah couldnts provide one, isn’t that their business, meds/sharps/bins? Sue

I was on Rebif for 4 years and it was always delivered by BUPA. They always phoned me in the week leading up to delivery to confirm the delivery date and see if I needed any other supplies. They were happy to deliver at work and would deliver at home in the school holidays only. Always delivered on the right date in all weathers. If they ever forgot to include batteries, replacement diary etc they would pop one in the post first class so I received it the very next day. I never had a problem with them.

Tracey x

Sorry not to get back and thank you all for the info - sounds like BUPA are a much better bet than HAH. Really interesting to know that I’m not the only one being messed about by HAH.

I’ve just had my first delivery from HAH. They rang ME last week to arrange delivery for this Tuesday. Spent the whole day at home and nothing turned up. Rang them twice but sat on hold for 30mins each time then gave up. Couldn’t use the internet to check delivery as I hadn’t had a welcome pack so didn’t have a customer number. Anyway, rang them Wednesday morning & managed to get through to someone and arrange a same day courier as I had training arranged for Thursday. Courier was expected at 530 (I discovered on phoning to check where it was at 545 …!) Courier turned up at 730. Welcome pack and grip missing … Also meant to be the pen injection not prefilled syringe but that turned out to by a misunderstanding between ms nurse & neuro! But so far not hugely impressed by HAH. Here’s hoping they improve next time.

I have been having bad experiences with Healthcare at Home also. The last time I had a failed delivery I put something on twitter and eventually got it sorted by a ‘troubleshooter’ but it still took ages and was so stressful. I would like to change to BUPA also but not sure the best way to go about it. Does BUPA charge more? I read somewhere that it was more expensive but since I looked on this site I don’t believe that. Maybe you could confirm that for me.

I had virtually the same experience as you, being kept waiting for 20 mins or more on the phone several times, and as I am often away from home, sometimes want the delivery day changed. The last time I had to go to London for a week followed by another week in Greece, so I asked them to deliver it in the week prior to when I was leaving, but of course it didn’t come. Next when I contacted them they said they could deliver it to London, and were familiar with the address. They said they had vans there every day, it would be no problem.

Of course it didn’t get delivered, with the result that I actually ran out of pills at the critical time when I was travelling, which made things very difficult going through airports etc.

I managed to get a little bit ahead with the pills and hope I don’t run out but I think I am expecting a delivery when I am away next week, it’s never sure when they reckon it will come, so I am about to start again contacting them. I will probably go back to the twitter contact if I wait very long on the phone the first time I ring.

As it is a NHS approved supplier, my husband contacted our MP about it who forwarded the complaint to the minister Jeremy Hunt, but we are still waiting for a reply.

Sorry, I have gone on a bit. (stress relief)

Hello everyone

I too have had problems with HAH. Had the free trial then problems with the delivery for the next batch, (eventually arrived after I was left without the drug), have now just spent 3 hours trying to sort out the next delivery. This has now been assured (I hope?) and I have 2 weeks supply left, so all being well, it should work out.for next Tuesday’s delivery. Not impressed with there system and the fact that they said on 3 occasions this morning that they would call me back…they didn’t but I did and I have other things to do. I reminded them that I do work part time and am not always available so would appreciate that they deliver when agreed. Not happy with this service and considering changing to BUPA even though it costs a little more.

Bye for now

I posted a few days ago because I got flowers and a written apology for my treatment at the hands of HAH. I would never get Fampyra from them again. BUPA Homecare deliveries are a few pounds more and they’re not flexible - they have a few days in the month when they deliver in your area and you have to have your delivery on one of those. But they don’t just leave you waiting for a delivery that never comes …

Hello Sewingchick

I’ve posted previously today about my disappointment with HAH. That aside, as someone who’s been using Fampyra for a while, can I ask how it has worked for you. For myself, I have had a good response and I’m now continuing to walk with crutches but with less effort and much faster than before. I’m hoping that eventually I can use only one stick and manage to exercise more. Fingers crossed…

Tina W x