Terms and Conditions of Business

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We seek to offer you the best care and attention as a client of Palmer & Duncan Vets Ltd and thank you for entrusting your pet's medical care to us. The following terms and conditions apply to all clients and visitors of Palmer & Duncan Vets Ltd. By registering your pet/pets with the Practice you agree that you have read and understood our conditions of business and agree to be bound by them. Should you require any clarification of any aspect of the terms then please ask. No addition or variation of these conditions will bind the practice unless it is specifically agreed in writing and signed by the Clinical Director.

GDPR Data Protection Act

Palmer & Duncan Vets Ltd will only process the personal data as is necessary for the business purposes.

Palmer & Duncan Vets Ltd will promptly comply with any client’s request or instruction to amend or delete their personal data.

Palmer & Duncan Vets Ltd will maintain the confidentiality of all personal data and will not disclose personal data to third parties unless authorised by the client.

Fees

All fee, medication and diet charges are subject to VAT and are available on request. Fee levels are determined by the levels of expertise and time spent on a case and according to the drugs, consumables materials and equipment used. A staff member will be happy to discuss any queries you may have.

Settlement Terms

Payment is due in full at the end of each consultation, discharge of your pet or upon collection of medicines unless an alternative arrangement has been agreed in advance by the Practice.

Should an account not be settled a reminder will be sent. If the account has not been settled within 14days of the reminder then administration charges will be incurred. If after due to notice the account remains outstanding it will be referred to our debt collection agency, who will assume full responsibility for recovering the outstanding amount and will add significant further charges for their services to the outstanding debt.

Inability to Pay

If for any reason , you are believe that you will be unable to settle your account in full at the time of treatment, we ask that you discuss the matter with a member of staff as soon as possible and prior to any treatment taking place. The Practice does not sanction payment by instalments.

Methods of Payment

Accounts are due for settlement at the end of each consultation, the discharge of your pet or on collection of medicines. You may settle your account by cash or credit/debit cards. The Practice can accept card payments over the telephone for your convenience. The Practice may also accept BACs payment if clients find this payment method more convenient.

Estimates of Treatment Costs

We will happily provide a written estimate as to the probable costs of treatment or surgical procedure. Please bear in mind that any estimate given can only be approximate and additional costs which cannot be predicted at the outset may occur as treatments progress, as often a pet’s illness does not follow a conventional course. We will make every reasonable effort to discuss any such additional costs wherever possible.

Pet Health Insurance

Palmer & Duncan Vets ltd strongly supports the principle of insuring your pet against unexpected illnesses and accidents. The Practice is happy to discuss your requirements for Pet Health Insurance however the choice of insurance company and level of covers remains you responsibility. It is also your responsibility to pay the Practice for your pet’s treatment and then reclaim the fees you have paid from your insurers.

In certain cases Palmer & Duncan Vets Ltd may agree to claim fees directly from a client’s insurance company. This will only be agreed depending on the individual insurance company and the level of fees outstanding. The insurer’s excess payment must be paid at the point of the direct claim being agreed. Agreement to accept a direct claim does not transfer liability of fees incurred to the Practice. If at any point the insurer refuses payment of a direct claim, the owner will still be fully liable for all costs incurred. The insurance policy is a private agreement between the pet-owner and the insurance company. Palmer & Duncan Vets Ltd cannot be involved in disputes over non-payment of insurance claims. We allow 30 days from completion of a claim form to receiving settlement. Should an insurance company not settle within that time period, the owner may be required to settle the outstanding fees in full.

Pharmaceuticals

Prescriptions are available from the practice. The current charge for a written prescription is displayed in our reception areas or you may ask a member of staff for this information. You may obtain Prescription Only Medicines, Category V, (POMVs) from your veterinary surgeon or ask for a prescription and obtain these medicines from another veterinary surgeon or a pharmacy. Your veterinary surgeon may prescribe POMVs only 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 policy of this practice is to re-assess an animal requiring prescriptions every three months, but this may vary with individual circumstances. The charge for this re-examination is our standard consultation fee. Flea and worm treatments can however be dispensed without examination as part of a health plan agreed at the annual health assessment. Clients are requested to give 24 hours’ notice for repeat prescriptions.

We strongly advise the regular use of routine anti-parasitic medication. Many of these products are POMVs and legally we are only able to dispense such products without the need of an examination when an animal has been examined by a Veterinary Surgeon in the last 12 months. We may therefore be required to examine your pet prior to dispensing. To assist our clients, when the patient is just examined for the purpose of dispensing routine anti-parasitic treatment there is no charge for a consultation. Should clinical matters or a skin condition for which treatment is necessary arise out of that examination then a consultation fee will be incurred at this time.

In accordance with the Medicines Act we will always use a veterinary licenced product. Should this not be available we will then use veterinary products licenced for use in other species and failing that a human medical product. Any use of off-licence medication will be based upon or knowledge of its use in animals and an assessment made of the risk and benefits involved. This is particularly common in species other than dogs and cats for which few licenced products are available. Please speak to a veterinary surgeon if you have any concerns about this issue.

Surgery Hours and Out of Hours Emergency Cover

Our normal hours are:

Monday to Friday 8.00 –19.30hrs
Saturdays 8.00—16.00hrs

Consultations are by appointment.

Out with these times if you require emergency veterinary care for your pet, please contact either:

AbbeyHouse Veterinary Hospital , Morley  0113 252 5818

Or

Calder Vets, Dewsbury 01924 465592

In-Patient Care

A qualified or trainee nurse is always on the premises to provide around the clock care of in-patients. An individual care plan will have been prepared by the vet in charge of the case that outlines the care and medicines your pet will require overnight. A duty vet is also available if the duty nurse has concerns regarding your pet.

Vaccination Reminders

Whilst we make every reasonable effort to send out reminders for annual vaccinations, the responsibility to keep them up to date remains with you. Please be aware that PETS passports require rabies vaccination boosters so please keep a personal record of when this is due.

Home Visits

In an emergency, it is usually in the best interest of your pet to be seen at the surgery where facilities and a full range of drugs are available. Home visits are available if requested subject to a vet and nurse being available. It is exceedingly unlikely that a home visit can be arranged after 12noon on week days or at weekends.

Ownership of Records

The care given to your pet may involve undertaking some specific investigations, for example taking radiographs. The ownership of the resulting radiographs and all other records will remain at all times with the practice as part of the complete and comprehensive records. Charges made for x-rays are for the production and interpretation of them. If required, we can arrange copies of the x-rays but this would be at your expense.

Radiographs and copies of all laboratory results, with a summary of the history will be passed on, by request, to another Veterinary Surgeon should the need arise. You may view your pet’s clinical notes on request by appointment only. Please note it is your responsibility to provide us with accurate contact details.

Second Opinions and Referrals

Palmer & Duncan Vets Ltd are happy to provide a second opinion to pet owners who are not clients of the Practice. It is professional etiquette that we contact the vets who are currently treating your pet for the clinical history up to that point. For this reason, we will ask you to authorise the release of your pet’s current medical history so that we may obtain relevant notes prior to our first examination.

Without this information, we may choose a medication that might interact with one previously used, causing problems to your pet. Also, we would not want to put a patient through diagnostic tests (e.g. X-rays) unnecessarily, in instances where those tests have been previously performed.

We are aware that some of our clients may wish to seek a second opinion at another veterinary practice from time to time. We are happy to forward all relevant clinical notes and laboratory test results directly to the instructed vet as the well being of your pet is our primary concern. There is no charge for this service. Client and patient information will not be released to any third party without the prior consent of the client.

Clients may on occasions wish to read the clinical notes pertaining to their pet. We are happy for any client to make an appointment at the practice to view the relevant notes with a member of staff on hand to help interpret the medical abbreviations used.

There are occasions when our veterinary team will advise a client to attend a specialist centre for a referral appointment. Some medical and surgical conditions are beyond our expertise as general practitioner vets and necessitate referral to specialists in an area of expertise. We will discuss the referral options available and organise a referral appointment, forwarding the clinical notes, laboratory results, x-rays and a referral letter to the specialist who will be responsible for the specialist care of your pet.

Complaints and Standards

We hope to ensure you never have recourse to complain about the standards of service received from us. However, if you feel that there is something you wish to raise, please direct your comments within 28 days in writing, to

The Clinical Director, Palmer & Duncan Vets Ltd, Sandbed House, 2 Wakefeild Road, Ossett, WF5 9JB.

An acknowledgement will be sent by return and then a period will elapse while the case is investigated and reports collated from those staff involved. A reply in writing will follow, usually within 28 days although the period may be longer if the Practice Manager of staff involved are temporary unavailable or delayed.

We will not tolerate any aggressive, or abusive behaviour to any staff member, at any time. Any client behaving in such a way will be asked to leave the premises immediately and will then be notified in writing that they must find alternative veterinary cover.

VARIATIONS IN TERMS AND CONDITIONS OR BUSINESS

No addition or variation of these conditions will bind the Practice unless specifically agreed in writing by the partners. Additionally, no agent or person employed by or under contract with the Practice has the authority to alter or vary these terms and conditions in any way.