Thank you for choosing Fitzpatrick Referrals for your pet’s treatment. We understand that this time is very stressful for you, but please take a few minutes to read this section to help you understand the terms and conditions of treatment for your pet as well as costs.
Terms and conditions of business
Please have a look at our terms and conditions
This document details our practice terms and conditions. Some aspects may not be relevant to you and we request that you get in touch with us for further clarification or explanation if required.
All queries relating to the costs of your pet’s treatment should be discussed with the clinician at the initial consultation and then arrangements can be finalised with reception after your initial consultation. The VAT inclusive estimate of the treatment of your pet will be specified on the treatment consent form that you are asked to sign.
Please appreciate that any estimates given to you by the clinician are estimates only and the cost of treatment can change depending on what extra medication or treatment your pet may need. Our clinicians work with your pet’s best interest at heart at all times and no two pets are the same.
If you do not have insurance, you are required to pay a 50% deposit of the estimated costs at the time of your initial consultation; the balance is then due on the collection of your pet.
If you have adequate insurance cover, we offer a direct claim service if you are unable to settle the bill in full and cannot wait for reimbursement from your insurance provider. In this instance, we will claim the invoices due directly from your insurance provider.
Please note that direct claims must be arranged in advance, prior to your appointment.
To take advantage of this, please complete the following steps:
- Call your primary care vet (who referred you to us) and ensure that the full clinical history has been emailed or faxed through to us.
- Call your insurance provider and give them permission to speak to us.
- Request a pre-authorisation form and fill in your sections, sign it and then forward it on to us to complete and fax to your insurance provider for processing. Please note that insurance companies can take seven working days to provide a response to a pre-authorisation request, depending on whom you are insured with. Therefore please let us have your form as early as possible so that we can start the process. Please note that we are not always informed directly whether the request has been approved and we therefore recommend that you contact your insurance provider prior to attending your appointment.
- In some circumstances, a pre-authorisation is not available. In these case, we will need to speak to your insurance provider and discuss with them to see whether they are likely to cover the condition or not. Note: the insurance provider will not guarantee to pay over the phone, they will just give us the information required to make a decision.
- You must bring a claim form and a copy of your current insurance schedule with you when you attend for your appointment.
Note: A direct claim will not be possible should your insurance company not agree to cover, or if upon receipt of the clinical history we have concerns that your insurance provider will not cover the condition.
Insured with an RSA affiliate company – refund of additional excess
For clients who are insured by More Than, Tesco, John Lewis, Marks & Spencer, Argos or Homebase and underwritten by RSA Insurance Group, Fitzpatrick Referrals will cover the cost of the £200 additional excess*, if charged, for sending your pet to us instead of the RSA Referral Vet Network. This is to ensure that you are not penalised unfairly for choosing to have your pet treated here. *Read Fitzpatrick Referrals’ policy for the RSA Referral Vet Network.
You are required to sign a consent form for the treatment of your pet. This form contains a clause that specifies that you are responsible for any of our fees and costs of your pet’s treatment. If you are insured and we have agreed to do a direct claim for you but there are costs that do not get settled by your insurance provider, you remain responsible for settling those costs directly with us; this includes any ‘own excess’ that your insurance provider may deduct from their payment to us. In signing this consent form you agree to these terms and accept the liability.
Your main invoice will, in some circumstances, include the first set of recheck x-rays that will be required. Please note that if your pet requires any further re-checks or treatment this will be invoiced separately. Should you be advised that your pet requires rehabilitation, e.g. hydrotherapy, physiotherapy, shockwave treatment or acupuncture, these treatments are all charged for separately, and are not always covered by pet insurance policies. You will therefore need to check with your insurance provider whether you are able to claim.
If you do not have insurance or your policy does not cover the full cost of the treatment of your pet, and you are not able to meet the costs in one payment, we may be able to help you spread your payments through the service of a third party payment plan provider subject to you meeting their credit requirements. This service can be made available if requested in good time before treatment takes place. Applications will often return an answer very quickly, but depending on your financial circumstances the process can take several days.
If you have any questions or queries relating to payments please call us on 01483 423 761 to speak to a member of the finance department.