- Charter Veterinary Hospital, Roundswell, Barnstaple
- Bridge House Surgery, Pilton, Barnstaple
- St. John's Surgery, Newport, Barnstaple
- Mullacott Veterinary Hospital, Ilfracombe
- South Street Surgery, Braunton
Charter Veterinary Hospital Group terms of business
Thank you for entrusting the care and attention of your animal to Charter Veterinary Hospital Group, this statement details our Group Terms and Conditions. Our terms of business require our clients to pay for their pet’s treatment and medication at the time it is provided, or on collection of their pet, following procedures or inpatient care.
- We encourage you to ask us for an update of current costs at any stage of your pet’s care, as more information becomes available. This is particularly important where we have been unable to estimate costs at the time of admission.
- If you know you are not going to be able to pay in full for your pet’s treatment and medication when you collect your pet please let us know in ADVANCE.
- If, at the time your pet is admitted or at any such time you are consenting for further treatment, you think you will not be able to pay in full at the time you collect your pet please let us know. IT IS ESSENTIAL THAT YOU DO THIS to enable us to liaise with our credit control and allow us to consider whether we are able to arrange payment terms and advise you of what information you may need to provide us with in order to facilitate exceptional payment terms.
Should the account not be settled under these terms, then a reminder will be sent. After due notice to you the client, overdue accounts will be referred to the Small Claims Court or our Debt Collecting Agency and further charges will be levied in respect of costs incurred in collecting the debt. Any cheque returned by our Bank as unpaid, any Credit Card payment not honoured and any Cash tendered that is found to be counterfeit will result in the original account being restored to the original sum with further charges being added in respect of bank charges and Administrative costs.
Direct Insurance Claims
Charter Veterinary Hospital Group are happy to provide a direct claims service for owners whose pets are insured. If you wish to take advantage of this facility you will need to abide by the following terms:
When you collect your pet following treatment.
- For bills of less than £2,000 - When you collect your pet you must give us an owner signed insurance claim form, even if the treatment relates to an ongoing condition for which you have already made a claim.
- For bills of more than £2,000 - In addition to an owner signed insurance claim form you must give us a copy of a valid insurance certificate, showing the amount of veterinary costs your policy provides.
- ONGOING MEDICATION - When you collect the medication you must give us an owner signed insurance claim form.
- EXCESSES - If the insurance claim relates to a new condition or falls into a new policy year you must pay us the excess at the time you collect your pet. If you don’t know the amount of excess that applies to your policy you will need to pay us a deposit of £100 and, when we receive payment from the insurance company, we will refund any difference.
- PART OWNER CONTRIBUTION– some policies require an additional owner contribution, eg 20%, for older animals. If the terms of your insurance policy require you to make any additional contributions towards the cost of any treatment for your pet, you will need to pay us that amount, in addition to any excess, at the time of collection of your pet, in addition to giving us an owner signed insurance claim form.
- IF THIS CONDITION MAY LEAD TO A CLAIM IN THE FUTURE - You must pay for any treatment at the time, until the cost of treatment has exceeded your excess. You will then need to give us an owner signed insurance claim form.
- IF YOUR INSURER DOES NOT PAY US WITHIN 10 WEEKS - We will send you an invoice and you agree to pay us the outstanding amount under our normal terms for uninsured pets.
- IF YOU INSURER DECLINES TO PAY YOUR INSURANCE CLAIM -We will send you an invoice and you agree to pay us the outstanding amount under our normal terms for uninsured pets.
- WE WILL NOT MAKE DIRECT CLAIMS FOR ANY POLICIES ISSUED BY E&L OR ANY OF THEIR SUBSIDIARIES. PLEASE EXPECT TO PAY ON COLLECTION OF YOUR PET.
Overnight Care and associated fees
At Mullacott Veterinary Hospital and Charter Veterinary Hospital we have members of staff on the premises 24 hours per day, 365 days per year to enable us to provide the appropriate level of overnight care to all our patients. Some patients require greater monitoring than others, and there is a cost implication for levels of increased involvement by the members of our team.
Our standard level of overnight care for inpatients involves a vet review at 5-6 pm ward rounds, nurse checks at 8 pm, 11 pm, and 7 am, nurse update and vet review at 8.35 am ward rounds. These examinations are included in the normal daily charges for hospitalisation. Patients on intravenous fluids, infusion pumps and more frequent monitoring incur a fluid management charge. Where treatment is required to be given more frequently, or if the condition requires it, staff, both veterinary surgeons and nurses, will attend your animal during the night and this will incur a high dependency charge. At the highest level of care, for example with an animal recovering from complex surgery, then the care may be continuous with a member of staff monitoring your animal constantly and for this you will incur an intensive care charge.
We encourage you to ask for updates of the costs incurred to date at any point during your pets care.
Should it become necessary to transfer patients from their home, one of our 3 branch surgeries or between hospitals you will be consulted before hand and updated by the duty nurse once your pet has been transferred.
Post hospital consultations and associated fees
Surgical procedures include 3 follow up consultations within the fee. If an animal requires more than 3 follow up consultations any additional consultations relating to the surgical procedure are charged at the full price less a 20% discount.
Post medical inpatient consultations
If your pet has been hospitalised for medical treatment but has not had surgery the first 2 follow up consultation will be charged at 50% of the full price, any further consultations will be charged at the full price less a 20% discount provided they relate the condition for which the animal was hospitalised.
Post diagnostic investigations
If your pet has been admitted, as a day patient, for diagnostic investigations, follow up consultations relating to the diagnostic investigations will be charged at the full price less a 20% discount.
Complaints and standards
We hope that you never have recourse to complain about the standards of service received from Charter Veterinary Hospital Group. However, if you feel that there is something you wish to complain about, please direct your comments, in writing, in the first instance to the Practice Manager at our Roundswell site.
Ownership of records
Case records including radiographs and similar documents are the property of, and will be retained by Charter Veterinary Hospital Group. Copies of a summary of the history will be passed on by request to another veterinary surgeon taking over the case.
Ownership of radiographs and similar records
The care given to your animal may involve making some specific investigations, for example, taking radiographs or performing ultrasound scans. Even though we make a charge for carrying out these investigations and interpreting the results, ownership of the resulting record, for example, a radiograph remains the property of the Group.
Out-of-hours small animal emergency cases are seen at either our Mullacott or Roundswell Veterinary Hospital. You will be expected to transport your animal to the nominated Veterinary Hospital for treatment. This permits us to access any equipment that might be required to provide the best treatment for your animal and mean the vet will be able to call on the assistance of the duty nurse, if required.
Variations in terms of trading
No addition or variation of these conditions will bind the practice unless it is specifically agreed in writing and signed by one of the Partners or the Practice Manager. No agent or person employed by, or under contract with, the Group has the authority to alter or vary these conditions in any way.
Prescriptions are available from this practice
You may obtain Prescription Only Medicines, Category V (POM Vs) from your veterinary surgeon or ask for a prescription, for which there will be a charge, and obtain these medicines from another veterinary surgeon or a pharmacy.
Your veterinary surgeon may only prescribe POM Vs for animals under his or her care
A prescription may not be appropriate if your animal is an in-patient or immediate treatment is necessary.
You will be informed, on request, of the price of any medicine that may be prescribed for your animal.
The general policy of this practice is to re-assess an animal requiring repeat prescriptions every 3-6 months, but this may vary with the individual circumstances and may be more frequently for recently diagnosed conditions.
Further information on the prices of medicines is available on request.
Off-Licence Medicine Use
There are certain situations where the best treatment for your pet may require the use of medicines which do not hold an appropriate licence for the species concerned. In this case we might therefore recommend using such a medicine “off- licence” but these will prescribed in accordance with the cascade.
The cascade is a sequence that all veterinary surgeons must follow when treating animals. Each vet must firstly look for
- alternative medicines that are used in other animal species for the same condition
- then medicines for different conditions in the same species
- finally medication authorized for human use
There are a lot of human medicines that are extremely useful in the treatment of pets. Most of these medicines have been in general veterinary use for years, anti- histamines, asprin, digoxin, diazepam and pain killers etc. Most of these
off-licence medicines are widely used in the veterinary field: there are documented dose rates and they are known to be safe. Our use of off-licence medication will be based upon our knowledge of the use in animals and an assessment of the risks and benefits involved. These medicines will only be used when they are indicated and deemed necessary and no licensed alternative exists.
Due to the cost of obtaining a licence for full use in a particular species, there are only a few drugs actually licensed for use in the smaller and exotic pets (eg rabbits, birds etc.) The consent form we will ask you to sign for treatments for your pets gives lift-long agreement for the use of unlicensed products (to save you having to sign a form every time your pet is treated). If you require further re-assurance about these new consent forms please ask to speak to one of the vets.
PLEASE NOTE THE FOLLOWING IMPORTANT INFORMATION
- Any drug dispensed (whether on or off-licence) will be dispensed with instructions for usage and, if applicable, special storage.
- Please handle all drugs carefully (particularly if you know yourself to be allergic to some drugs).
- Keep out of the reach of children.
- In accordance with BSAVA guidelines: Once medicines have been dispensed they should not be returned to the practice for resale, as correct storage conditions (and therefore safety and efficacy) of medicines returned by clients cannot be guaranteed. It is practice policy not to accept any medicines, un-used or part used for refunds, or disposal.
- If you have any medication left over we will be happy to dispose of it safely. Please be aware that there may be a small charge.