Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

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sabresfan18
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by sabresfan18 »

kittyridge wrote: 2022-04-28 02:55:29 Please feel free to take my input along with you to your meeting:

I definitely noticed the decline in Convatec's bag from the old to the new, and am very disappointed that they seem to have favored cheaper made products/materials and larger profits to higher quality and better products. Seems like profits over people.

I didn't really notice my old bag, 51411310, which is how you want it. You want it to just work and not have to think about it. The filter always sucked, but that was about it.

The new bag, 51416417, seems inferior in the most important and crucial aspects. The invisclose is absolutely horrible. I find it has leaked about 4 out of 5 times when I empty the bag, creating a new worry and anxiety I never had with the previous one.

The fuzzy material on the new one is atrocious. If you have rough hands and dry skin, this horrible fabric material pulls out and fibers dangle and puff out, etc. After a day of emptying it 5 times or so, the rough skin on my hands has caught on, pulled, and shredded the fibers so that it looks like some shaggy feral cat has clung to my abdomen.

The filters on Convatec bags have always been bad, but the new bag has some how made it even worse. I don't think I've had a single filter work yet, because my bags start ballooning form the first day I put a new one on. The old one at least worked for a day or two before getting clogged, but this new one never even begins working.

The shape and size of the new bag, for me, are a detriment. This is a more subjective thing from person to person, but the old shape, size, and dimensions were so much better for me.
Kitty,

I am so sorry to hear about your negative experience as well. I will absolutely be bringing your feedback into the meeting with me.

Thanks for sharing. I hope you have a nice weekend.
sabresfan18
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by sabresfan18 »

Bumping this thread one more time in hopes for someone to see it and provide any feedback they haven't already. Meeting is tomorrow afternoon.

Thanks for everyone who's contributed thus far. I will bring your concerns to Bruno + Neil, in addition to my own.

Be well, everyone.
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To Dream a Dream
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by To Dream a Dream »

Thanks so much for representing all of us at the meeting. Hopefully, your work on this will not only improve manufacturer to client relationships for ConvaTec, but also encourage our membership to address concerns regarding other companies. With great appreciation of your efforts.
Crohn's Dx '66 (perforated ileum)
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Ileo '77 Revision '85
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steiconi
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by steiconi »

Any comments from convatec?
Lee

I am not my disease.
sabresfan18
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by sabresfan18 »

steiconi wrote: 2022-05-13 20:03:08 Any comments from convatec?
A productive meeting and they allowed me to present a ~20 min presentation with some research I've done as well as some of the feedback provided in this thread. They asked me to provide them with the PowerPoint that I used and a hyperlink to this thread. I did inform them that they can view the thread for research purposes but are NOT to post on behalf of the company (this was a request from a moderator).

I will provide more information when I get some time to. I am back in the office after a week in the Adirondacks, so I'm playing catchup.

I will add that I felt way better about meeting with Karin, Sue, Bruno (COO), and Neil (R&D) than I did with the previous COO of the ostomy division, Mani Gopal. Mani had excellent intentions and was as empathetic as they come. But sometimes good intentions still miss the mark, and I think that's precisely what happened when Mani decided to shrink lot size and provide a streamlined/lesser quality product for patients. Now the people in charge are trying to clean up the mess again.
hastings
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by hastings »

I too was told, without notice, that my pouch was discontinued and there was a "new, improved" product. I have sent three emails complaiiing about the filters (THEY DON'T WORK), and received a phoone call each time,which at laeast shows that someone reads the emails. In speaking with a Convatec nurse, I was assured that they were aware of the problem with the filters, and it was being referred to Design to work out a fix. Nothing ever happened and the filters still do not work. In my last conversation, I was essentially told to "Suck It Up", no fix is coming.
I had intended to query other members about other suppliers, but it sounds as if nothing is any better.
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steiconi
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by steiconi »

sabresfan18, thanks for talking to them and letting us know.
Lee

I am not my disease.
ThatFLguy
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by ThatFLguy »

Convatec is what I left the hospital with. I had loads of issues with the barries and then the bags. I suffer from dysgraphia and it affects my hand coordination as well as my ability to handwrite. There were a lot of times were in the early morning I could not get the bottom of the bag open and ended up very mad. I made a mess of my bathroom and then finally tried the Coloplast bags I am using now. So much better and less issue opening the bags.
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To Dream a Dream
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by To Dream a Dream »

Am attempting to bump this thread up as I cannot find any current comments from sabersfan18 regarding the meeting. Having used ConvaTec products since 1977 when they were still a division of Squibb, I am interested in any further developments. Thanks.
Crohn's Dx '66 (perforated ileum)
Multiple Bowel Resections
Ileo '77 Revision '85
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sabresfan18
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by sabresfan18 »

To Dream a Dream wrote: 2022-06-18 09:06:41 Am attempting to bump this thread up as I cannot find any current comments from sabersfan18 regarding the meeting. Having used ConvaTec products since 1977 when they were still a division of Squibb, I am interested in any further developments. Thanks.
Hello!

I apologize that I have not updated you much. I am busy trying to balance a full-time job as well as a master's program, so free time is hard to come by these days.

I will let you know that I presented a ~25-minute PowerPoint to Convatec's new COO Bruno Pinheiro, their director of R&D Neal Carty, their managing clinical RN Karin Bello (a fantastic person), and an individual named Mary Kelso -- I am unaware of her role at the company, admittedly I missed it. Anyone interested in seeing this Powerpoint may reach out to me via DM, and I will forward it to you.

My main concerns were with the quality of the new pouches that have been released. Although I find Convatec flanges second-to-none, their new line of pouches is inadequate and unsafe for ostomy patients to use. I raised these concerns and cited numerous scholarly sources indicating why Convatec representatives are not hearing from the population they're attempting to serve. There is a myriad of reasons that ostomy patients often remain underrepresented and outspoken -- and I emphasized this to Convatec, silence doesn't necessarily represent feelings of content. Many of us are suffering in silence because of the changes they implemented to their pouch line.

Another concern I addressed with Bruno was to abandon the previous COO (Mani Gopal's) strategy of making executives on the ostomy team wear ostomy devices filled with oatmeal to "simulate" being an ostomy patient. I explained that this was a dangerous and insulting approach to what is a significant aspect of many of our lives. When Mani told me this in my first meeting with Convatec, I knew immediately that the company was under the wrong supervision. And make no mistake, eyebrows raised when I started my meeting with Bruno, Neal, Karin, and Mary when I explained to them I was elated to hear Mani had stepped down, as I felt it was Convatec's ostomy division had no chance of thriving under his control. Mani was a brilliant and kind human being with good intentions, but the good intentions missed the mark and came up wildly short. I explained that they would benefit from some targeted hiring where they acquire some talent who not only has the educational background but is also an ostomy patient. This will allow them insight into social, physical, and emotional variables arising during product innovation that non-ostomy patients cannot account for.

They have requested another meeting with me in July, and I have accepted. They seem to be looking to fix this, but I also didn't get the vibe that anything was happening quickly.

Since our meeting, I have also reported the pouch line to the FDA, which regulates DME in the US. Because of the number of times I had to have my hypergrannulated skin cauterized, I felt it warranted reporting the product to the FDA so they may re-review whether the product meets safety and quality standards. I will post a link below where you can do the same if you feel Convatec's product changes have negatively impacted you.

Quickly: Convatec does not know I have reported these bags to the FDA. I didn't want to do this, but I also realized that nothing would induce change quicker than hitting Convatec where it hurts the most: their wallet. If their ability to make a profit off this substandard product goes away, they'll have no choice but to put more money and energy into producing a quality product quicker. So if you're reading this from Convatec....maybe add this to the agenda for our July meeting? ;)

Sorry again for my delays. Below is the link you're able to file a report with the FDA regarding Convatec products that you've had adverse reactions to.

FDA website: https://www.fda.gov/medical-devices/rep ... nduct-form
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To Dream a Dream
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by To Dream a Dream »

Thank you for your very enlightening & comprehensive report. It shows a great deal of time & effort well spent in selflessly supporting advocacy for us all. My very best for your continuing full-time work. And your Master's program. You are an exemplary example of a person with an ostomy who has managed to overcome obstacles familiar to many of us despite the condescension & dismissal often shown by others. I look forward to your posts.
Crohn's Dx '66 (perforated ileum)
Multiple Bowel Resections
Ileo '77 Revision '85
Celiac Dx
sabresfan18
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by sabresfan18 »

One other thing I'll add is the second-hand market that I've also brought to the FDA's attention. I'm reading that many ostomy patients are taking the old line of Convatec's pouches, washing them after use, and reusing them. I cannot encourage folks enough to refrain from doing this. While it seems to be an efficient way to keep using the products you're using, you are increasing the probability of an infection surrounding the stoma exponentially by doing this.

I implore you to check out products by Coloplast, Hollister, and the other groups out there. There are also specific ostomy providers that major insurances cover members to see. These individuals can help you fit into another product that may not be euphoric, but it's at least not putting your wellbeing at risk. As I stated, my free time is limited. But if you feel you could benefit from some help locating a provider like this in your area, please reach out to me via private message, and I will make some time to help you.

The best thing you can do when you're dissatisfied with a company's changes is stop giving them your money. I've transitioned my colostomy AND urostomy products over to Coloplast to ensure that Convatec doesn't get another dollar from me until they fix this. If you'd like help doing the same, please reach out.
sabresfan18
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by sabresfan18 »

To Dream a Dream wrote: 2022-06-21 17:41:48 Thank you for your very enlightening & comprehensive report. It shows a great deal of time & effort well spent in selflessly supporting advocacy for us all. My very best for your continuing full-time work. And your Master's program. You are an exemplary example of a person with an ostomy who has managed to overcome obstacles familiar to many of us despite the condescension & dismissal often shown by others. I look forward to your posts.
Appreciate your kind words and I'm sorry to keep you waiting on an update.
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Mara
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by Mara »

As far as reporting to the FDA, I am not sure exactly what the point is. Ostomy appliances are Class 1 Medical Devices which do not need much in the way of regulatory approvals as far as I understand.
Here is an article that explains FDA classifications:
https://www.fda.gov/medical-devices/con ... -marketing

I still recall a poster from a long ago, previous iteration of this discussion board - maybe Bob Webtech remembers - who often complained that the FDA didn't control ostomy appliances.
Ileostomy due to UC - 50 odd years
sabresfan18
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Re: Decline in Convatec's Products and Service

Post by sabresfan18 »

Mara wrote: 2022-06-21 22:24:59 As far as reporting to the FDA, I am not sure exactly what the point is. Ostomy appliances are Class 1 Medical Devices which do not need much in the way of regulatory approvals as far as I understand.
Here is an article that explains FDA classifications:
https://www.fda.gov/medical-devices/con ... -marketing

I still recall a poster from a long ago, previous iteration of this discussion board - maybe Bob Webtech remembers - who often complained that the FDA didn't control ostomy appliances.

Based on the conversation I had with a pharmacist that works at Medwatch, that's not necessarily true. If the product is determined to be causing physical adverse effects, it can be re-reviewed with these concerns in mind.

You could be right, I could be right. Either way, I encourage folks to file reports if they feel Convatec's products have adversely impacted them.

The more information the FDA receives regarding the company, the more inclined they're going to be to see what's going on.
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