Recently I had to take my Invacare power wheelchair into National Seating and Mobility for repairs. I can not express strongly enough my displeasure with Invacare power wheelchairs. This is my third Invacare power wheelchair and each one of the first two had multiple problems which needed service. How Invacare can charge $27, 000 dollars for these inferior products is far beyond my comprehension. It is my belief that the MedicareMedicade Administration should investigate the possibility of not purchasing this brand wheelchair in the future. It seems to be a complete waste of taxpayer money for these chairs then the follow up repairs. It’s not like chairs get hundreds of miles on them.
Then to add insult to injury, It took National Seating and Mobility 10 days before they could even look at my chair for repairs. Finally after repairing my chair, they said the chair needed more powerful batteries and that it would take approximately 30 days before this would be approved by Medicare. It’s my personal belief that companies like National Seating and Mobility, whose business is mainly dealing with the disabled, have a responsibility (morally or just as a good business practice) to assist their customers as much as is possible. I believe that something as simple as loaning two batteries in the interim would have been a temporary solution to the problem. But not to be until I suggested it. And guess what? I was told they couldn’t put the batteries in for another 4 days. Less than a minute job ( at this point I had been with out a chair for 17 days) wait another 4 days. Unbelievable. If I treated my customers like this in my business, I would soon be out of business, but I don’t have a captive customers base. As a quadriplegic, I need to lean back in my chair every 2 hours or so to relieve pressure on my butt to help prevent pressure sores. Without a functioning chair that’s not possible. The alternative is staying in bed 24/7. Obviously, that defeats the purpose of having a power chair. When they did install the batteries in less than 30 minutes, they billed MedicareMedicade $300.00 for the installation. That comes out to $600 dollars an hour, $10 per minute. And we wonder why Medicare has financial problems.
And lastly, when calling National Seating and Mobility, and explaining my thoughts to the receptionist on what I believe could be done, I was accused of yelling at her and treating her badly. First, I told her I was talking about the company she works for, not her personally. Second, she accused me of yelling at her. I don’t know what she considers yelling, but my MS has not allowed me to yell in over 10 years. This young lady needs to develop her people skills for the job she has. When I contacted her boss, Rose ( a nice lady) who talked to the receptionist, the receptionist lied to her, turning it all around saying I was swearing at her. So here I am, I put in a complaint and now I’m made out to be at fault. That a way to handle a complaint. I guess, the best defense is a good ofense. I look at all this as more of National Seating and Mobility” indifference, uncaring attitude towards their disabled customers while protecting their own people, right or wrong.
While in the process of writing this, my friend, was Googling the address for National Seating and Mobility and found this area with multiple complaints about National Seating and Mobility. And to no surprise, someone else wrote about a very similar chair situation with the receptionist saying the exact same thing she told me about yelling. He also was left waiting over 2 weeks, this was in 2009. Wow! Again showing NS&M indifference, uncaring attitude.
Can’t someone or agency do something to protect wheelchair confined individuals from these uncaring companies that not only mistreat the disabled with long waits, but waste Medicare/Medicare to the tune of multi millions of dollars with inferior sub quality products and outrageous services charges.