Terms & Conditions
PAYMENT AT WHITE CLIFFS VETS
All fees must be paid upon request, unless otherwise agreed with Julie or Chris. The only exception to this is where an ‘Excess only’ pet insurance policy has previously been registered and accepted by us (for full details please read the relevant section below). Please note, we do not offer credit facilities, we leave that to the banks.
You may settle your account using any of the following methods:
- CREDIT/DEBIT CARD
Payment is requested at the end of each consultation, after each individual treatment session, daily throughout any period of hospitalisation, at the time of discharge, at the end of treatment and upon collection of any drugs, diets or other products.
Prolonged treatment may require frequent payments in order to maintain a clear account and clients should be advised that further veterinary services cannot be provided to those with outstanding debts of more than 30 days, unless alternative arrangements have been made with our Accounts Department. Our reception and clinic staff are instructed to decline further services until any debt has been cleared in full.
INABILITY TO PAY
If, for any reason, you are unable to settle your account upon request, we would ask you to discuss the matter immediately. Instalments or part-payment of any account may ONLY be sanctioned by Julie or Chris.
ESTIMATES OF TREATMENT COSTS
We will be happy to provide a written estimate as to the probable cost of a course of treatment. Please bear in mind that any estimate given can only be approximate as a pet’s illness may not follow a conventional or predictable course. For this reason, such an estimate should not be interpreted as a fixed price quotation. We will only honour a fixed price quotation which has been signed by Chris or Julie.
Treatment and investigations are dictated by a patient’s condition over time. Clients need to be aware that it is only possible to give estimates covering short periods of time, i.e. two to three days. After this, further two to three day estimates can, and will, be generated in response to information available, alterations in the patient’s condition and/or any progress made.
When a pet is hospitalised every effort will be made to give regular updates via the telephone however it must be remembered that some conditions change swiftly and may require treatment immediately, this is rare and you will usually be asked to give consent for further treatment and will be advised of the cost at the time.
SET PRICE PROCEDURES
Certain elective procedures, such as neutering and vaccination, are carried out at set prices, depending upon the type and size of patient. Such fees assume that no complications occur. Management of complications, from whatever cause, always generates additional costs, which are not the responsibility of the White Cliffs Vets and so must be met by the client, as detailed below.
OUTCOMES, COMPLICATIONS AND COMPLICATION MANAGEMENT
There are many and varied reasons why surgical or medical complications may occur, including self-trauma by the patient. We regret that we cannot be held responsible, whatever the cause. Risk of complications is clearly identified on all our surgery, anaesthesia, hospitalisation and other consent forms. Costs arising as a result of dealing with any complications are regarded as additional to any estimate and will be included in the final account.
We pride ourselves on our excellent standards of practice, equipment, staff skills and up to date veterinary techniques. The outcomes of our medical and surgical cases are remarkably good. However, just as with human medicine, nothing is 100% predictable and results can never be guaranteed.
STANDARDS OF SERVICE
All White Cliffs Vets veterinary services are determined and performed by qualified veterinarians, assisted by qualified registered or trainee veterinary nurses. All our vets and qualified nurses are registered with the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) and so must act in accordance with their guide to professional conduct at all times.
White Cliffs Vets is recognised by the RCVS as an accredited Tier 2 practice. This means that our facilities and services are of a consistently high and certified standard. Details of the practice accreditation scheme are available from the RCVS (www.rcvs.org.uk).
In an emergency we can be contacted using our telephone number 01304 41 41 41 to access our 24 hour veterinary service which is provided by Vets Now or you can ring them directly using the telephone number above.
COMPLIANCE WITH BOOSTER DATES
Clients are obliged to ensure that all registered animals are fully vaccinated at all times.
White Cliffs Vets is not responsible for the consequences of a client bringing an inadequately vaccinated animal to any of our hospitals or clinics. We do not accept responsibility for the consequences for any animal that is not up to date with their vaccinations.
THE RIGHT TO REFUSE SERVICE
Any client threatening a member of staff, behaving inappropriately, or failing to clear their account in response to a final written request will be refused future veterinary services.
We sincerely hope that you will never need to complain about the standards of service you receive from White Cliffs Vets. However, if there is something you wish to discuss or you have a complaint, please in the first instance discuss the matter with the veterinary surgeon or nurse in charge of your pet and if you are unable to do this please telephone or write to either Julie or Chris. Contact details can be found on our website. Please remember to include your details, details of any member of staff involved (all our staff wear name badges and are easily identified) plus the full circumstances of your complaint. This information will remain confidential. We take all complaints very seriously and will endeavour to deal with client concerns as quickly and efficiently as possible.
We are registered under the Data Protection Act of 1998 to keep your personal information for accounting and record purposes. We will not divulge your details to other agencies except for debt collection purposes. We will use the data that we have on file to contact you with information beneficial to your animal’s health, for example vaccination reminders, drug recall information, other products which may be relevant, and newsletters. If you DO NOT want us to send you such information, please advise us in writing.
OWNERSHIP OF RECORDS
Case records and documents, including those of specific investigative procedures such as radiography, endoscopy or ultrasound scans, remain the property of White Cliffs Vets, and will be retained by us. Relevant copies of any record and/or history are available to you and can be passed, upon request, to another veterinary surgeon or pet insurance company.
Unless our clients specify otherwise, employees of White Cliffs Vets are free to take photographic images throughout the course of all or any treatment. Such photographs may eventually be used by the Practice e.g. for marketing, teaching or training purposes.
In An Emergency
24 Hour Phone Line
Monday – Friday
8.30am – 6.00pm
08.30am – 12.00pm
Sunday & Public Holidays