Understanding the Cost of Veterinary Care
Adapted from Trends Magazine article, December 2013
How can my veterinarian help me reduce the cost of veterinary care?
The very best way to reduce the overall cost of veterinary care is to invest in preventative care for your pet early on. This means scheduling regular exams during which your veterinarian can help your pet avoid preventable conditions and detect disease early on, which in turn helps you to avoid costly and painful treatment down the road. Just like with humans, preventative veterinary care is widely recognized as the best method of helping reduce long-term medical costs.
How does the cost of veterinary care compare to that of human health care?
Veterinary care is actually a good deal compared to human medicine. We are lucky enough to live in a world where veterinary hospitals can use the same technologies used in human health care. Thankfully for pet owners, veterinary hospitals offer medical care for a fraction of the cost of human medicine. The difference is that, in human medicine, we often do not see the full cost of health care as it is commonly paid by a health insurance provider.
How are veterinary fees determined?
Fees for veterinary health care are determined by the complexity of the case and treatment options, operational costs of maintaining hospital facilities with the appropriate technologies and equipment, and support personnel to provide the elevated level of service and care that pet owners expect and deserve. We strive to keep our fees competitive with clinics offering similar levels of care.
Why do fees appear to vary so much from one veterinary hospital to another?
It is important to recognize that different veterinary hospitals will provide different levels of care and expertise. As consumers, pet owners must choose their veterinarian based on a combination of the quality of care they are seeking as well as personal financial considerations. Just Cats Veterinary Services is committed to quality care and is first and foremost concerned with the best interest of the pet.
Not all veterinary hospitals are able to offer the same level of care, so prices vary from practice to practice. Just Cats Veterinary Services strives to offer the highest standard of veterinary care and offers services and treatments not available at other practices in the area. There can be additional costs associated with these services.
How can I learn more about Pet Insurance?
There are many things to consider when choosing a pet insurance company to help with the financial aspect of pet ownership. Pet insurance does not work in the same way that human health insurance works. Typically the owner will be responsible for filling out and submitting the claim forms for each visit. The owner is also responsible for paying the veterinarian for the cost of services. After the claim forms are submitted and reviewed by the pet insurance company the owner will receive a check in the mail for the amount of the visit that the insurance will cover. Most pet insurance companies offer plans with and without a deductible, some will not cover the cost of routine health care such as vaccines and neutering, and some offer add on coverage to help with these costs. Visit http://www.consumersadvocate.org/pet-insurance/best-pet-insurance to view comparisons for the top 10 pet insurance companies.
Does my veterinarian act in the best interest of my pet?
Veterinarians are pet owners and are passionate about strengthening the human-animal bond. Many veterinary professionals are committed to providing the same level of care for their patients as they do for their own pets. The care your pet ultimately receives at Just Cats Veterinary Services is a result of the collaboration between you and your veterinarian, taking into account the doctor’s recommendation as well as the level of care you choose. Our team-based approach gives pet owners the ability to choose their doctor, get all of their questions answered and discuss treatment options.