Terms and Conditions of Business
Thank you for entrusting the care and attention of your pet(s) to Twickenham Veterinary Surgery. This statement details our Practice Terms and Conditions. Some aspects of the Terms may not be relevant to you and we request that you ask for further explanation or clarification if needed.
It is essential for us to maintain accurate records of our clients and patients. In order to do this we will periodically ask you to confirm the details we hold. Up-to-date contact details are particularly important. If your details change please inform us so we may ensure our data base is as up to date as possible.
A detailed fee note is available for every consultation, surgical procedure and transaction with us. All professional fees, medications, diets and reception sales are subject to VAT at the current rate. Fee levels are determined by the time spent on a case, and in the case of surgical cases, by the complexity of the surgery. Fees will also be applied in respect of drugs, materials, consumables and diets used.
Methods of Payment
Itemised bills can be provided with every transaction. Accounts are due for settlement at the end of the consultation, the discharge of the pet or upon collection of diets/drugs. You may settle your account using:
- CREDIT/DEBIT CARD - Switch, Solo, MasterCard, Visa, Delta.
Estimates of Treatment Costs
We will happily provide a written estimate as to the probable costs of a course of treatment. Please bear in mind that any estimate given can only be approximate – often a pet’s illness will not follow a conventional course. We will provide the details of the price of any medicine stocked or sold on request. There is a sign in the reception area detailing the 10 most commonly prescribed medicines.
Should the account not be settled by the end of the calendar month in which treatment and services took place, an invoice will be sent. Where upon you have 30 days to settle the account. Should it be necessary for further reminders to be sent, an additional administrative fee will be incurred, and charged to you. After due notice to you, the client, overdue accounts will be referred to our Debt Collection Agency and further charges may be levied in respect of costs incurred in collecting the debt: such as court fees, correspondence, court attendance, phone calls, etc. 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.
Inability to Pay
If, for any reason, you are unable to settle your account as specified, please discuss the matter as soon as possible with a member of staff in order to minimise further administrative costs being incurred. Please note that part payments, or payments by instalment can ONLY be sanctioned by express permission of the Practice Manager – Kevin Franklin or Business Owner – Christabel Moseley.
Pet Health Insurance
Twickenham Veterinary Surgery strongly supports the principle of insuring your pet against unexpected illness or accidents. We do not endorse any particular company or companies, but please ask for details about insurance from a member of staff. It is possible to for us to accept direct claims from insurance companies. When you submit your insurance claim form for our vets to complete, please ensure that it is signed and that there is a stamp addressed envelope for the insurance company – the insurance companies normally supply their own pre-paid envelopes.
Written signed consent for procedures is required in all cases of admission to the hospital and any alterations will be agreed prior to action being taken. Consent is also required for the use of medications in species for which they were not licensed e.g. rabbits and rodents. In this case a lifetime consent form will be provided to allow this to be done without asking for specific permission in each and every separate case. This is required, as the majority of veterinary drugs are not licensed for use in small mammals, reptiles, birds, fish, amphibians and invertebrates. We must then use drugs which have a proven activity and efficiency despite this lack of licence.
Ownership of Records
Your pet's clinical records, including radiographs and laboratory test reports remain the property of Twickenham Veterinary Surgery and will be kept under the terms of the Data Protection Act (1998). You are entitled to see the records on request. Your pet's records will be sent to another veterinary surgeon or an insurance company on request from them.
Ownership of Radiographs and Similar Records
The care given to your pet may involve making some specific investigations, for example taking radiographs. Even though we make a charge for carrying out these examinations and interpreting their results, ownership of the resulting record, for example a radiograph remains with the surgery.
Under DTI regulations you may request written prescriptions for your pet's medications. There is a charge for this service - please telephone the surgery to ask for the relevant fee. However, you will be responsible for sourcing these medications from a suitable supplier and should bear in mind that delay in the start of treatment may not be in the best interests of the welfare of your pet.
Veterinary prescriptions are not covered by NHS prescription charges and you will have to pay any supplier separately for those drugs, which costs will be at their market rate. In circumstances where it is essential to begin treatment immediately then prescriptions will not be offered. This is most likely to be in the case of injectable medications where a delay would be unacceptable. Prescriptions will not be issued for similar drugs used in anaesthesia or emergency situations.
It is necessary both for the welfare of your pet and to meet legal obligations for this surgery to re-examine pets receiving long-term medication. Prescriptions for POM-V medicines may be repeated at our discretion, to animals under our care, after a clinical assessment of the case. The interval will vary with the condition and the medication but will be no longer than every 6 months. The prevailing examination fee will be charged for that consultation. POM-V medicines may be dispensed in amounts sufficient for up to 6 months treatment, at our discretion. Variations may apply according to our clinical assessment of the case.
Return of Unused Drugs
We are happy to accept unused medications back into the practice for disposal only. Due to new legislation from the Veterinary Medicines Directorate, we cannot credit a client's account when returning unused medication. The British Veterinary Association's Code of Practice on Medicines states the: "Once stock has been dispensed, it should not be accepted back into the dispensary. No returned goods should be offered for resale because there may have been problems with storage conditions beyond the veterinarian's control.
Cancellation of Appointments
We understand that, from time to time, appointments needs to be cancelled: we ask that you let us know as far in advance as possible. If you have cancelled two appointments at short notice (less than 24hrs), or have failed to turn up to two appointments, then you will be charged a full first consultation fee.
Complaints and Standards
Twickenham Veterinary Surgery aim to provide the highest standard of care for you and your animals, and we hope that you never have cause to complain. However, any complaint should in the first instance be made in writing to the Practice Manager – Kevin Franklin. If the problem is not resolved at this stage, you may wish to contact our governing body, the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons.
In the event of an emergency, outside of our normal opening hours, we use Vets Now Referrals located in Hersham. If you call the main surgery number (020 8898 0528) out of hours, an answering machine will give you the details of the telephone number for Vets Now Referrals. Alternatively you call Vets Now Referrals directly (01634 66 66 55) and select option 1 for Surrey. You will be expected to transport your animal to the nominated surgery for treatment. Please note that any treatment given to your pet outside of our normal surgery hours will incur an increased fee. Twickenham Veterinary Surgery is not responsible for costs of treatment at Vets Now Referrals.
Twickenham Veterinary Surgery is committed to protecting your online privacy while providing you with the most useful and enjoyable web experience possible. While you can use many features of the Twickenham Veterinary Surgery website anonymously, you are required to provide personal information to gain access to some of our content and services.
Twickenham Veterinary Surgery will contact you by letter, phone or email in order to advise you of the progress of an inpatient, reminders of any preventative health aspects due for your pet, outstanding accounts, any current promotions, etc. We will send reminders for vaccinations when they are due, but cannot take responsibility for any lapsed vaccinations. It is the owner’s responsibility to ensure vaccinations are up to date.
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 the Surgery Owner, Christabel Moseley, or the Practice Manager, Kevin Franklin. No other agent or person employed by, or under contract with, Twickenham Veterinary Surgery has the authority to alter or vary these conditions in any way.