Terms & Conditions

Our veterinary hospital has established itself amongst the local Lincoln community and now provides care to thousands of pets every year. We are now the only independent veterinary hospital in Lincoln.

We are a member of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons’ Practice Standards Scheme, a voluntary initiative which accredits veterinary practices in the UK, we aim to provide a high quality service. The terms and conditions of business are detailed below and we will deem that you have accepted these by requesting that we treat your pet. Please feel free to ask us if there are any aspects which you feel require clarification.

Our History

There are eight veterinary surgeons, working at the Hospital supported by a team of ten veterinary nurses, two kennel assistants, eight receptionists, one secretary and a practice manager. There is a Branch Surgery at Doddington Road, south of Lincoln where consultations only are carried out. All operations are performed at the main hospital.

The practice that was to become the Hospital was started over 100 years ago by Charles Seeley at Monks Road in the centre of Lincoln. The site was purchased by the Technical College in 1977 and the practice moved to Riseholme Road. Following upgrading and improvement Hospital status was granted in 1986, the first Veterinary Hospital in Lincolnshire.

Our practice is now owned and run by Carolyn and Anneli who bought the practice from David Beech in 2018. The new directors have worked here 5 and 10 years respectively and are dedicated to continuing the same level of outstanding service to the community.

It’s our passion

We’re passionate about what we do. The whole team here at the hospital work hard to provide the very best veterinary care services. So, if you are seeking treatment or advice for your pet, do please contact us.

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Appointments

Consultations are by appointment only, which can be made by telephoning 01522 800333 after 8.30am in the morning. This is the number for appointments at both Newport and Doddington Road. Please specify which branch you would like to book for.

Consulting Times

Newport
Monday – Friday 9am-6.45pm
Saturday 9am-12.30pm

Skellingthorpe
Monday – Friday 9am -5:00pm
Consulting Times
9am-10am
3pm-4.30pm

Doddington Road
Monday 9am-12.45pm, 2pm-4.45pm
Tuesday 1pm-4.45pm
Wednesday 1pm-4.45pm
Thursday 9am-12.45pm, 2pm-4.45pm
Friday 9am-12.45pm. 2pm-4.45pm

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Emergency Treatment

Emergencies during normal opening hours will always be seen as soon as possible. It is very helpful if clients telephone the practice when an emergency arises, so immediate practical advice can be given and to let us that they are on their way, so preparations can be made for their arrival. We use Vets Now in North Hykeham for our out of hours care. However we still have a Vet and Nurse on call 24/7 to take care of our in patients and post-surgery cases.

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Owners are responsible for keeping their pet under control whilst in the waiting room area. Dogs must be kept on appropriate leads; cats in secure cat baskets; and rabbits, rats and guinea pigs in secure containers. A dedicated cat waiting area is provided, with a cat bookshelf at the end of the waiting room for you to put your cat in their basket. We can also happy to provide covers for cat baskets – please ask our team on reception. These can be obtained from reception and should be returned reception at the end of your visit. Please note that some dogs, in particular, need space and this may be indicated by the dog wearing a yellow ribbon, bandana or something similar on its lead or collar. We would ask, in the interests of personal safety that, all clients do not to approach animals that they do not know without the express permission of their owner.

Home Visits
Where necessary we can arrange to visit your pet at home. This will incur an additional charge based on the time taken to travel to and from the property, the number of employees required to attend and the time of the visit. Whilst we can visit in an emergency, under these circumstances many pets benefit from being brought to the surgery where a fuller range of equipment is available to deal with the situation which has arisen.

Professional Fees and Charges

Consultation fees are based on 15-minute-long appointments. All fees, diets and drug charges are subject to VAT at the current rate.

Fee levels are determined based on the expertise required, the time spent working up a case together with the laboratory tests required, drugs, materials, consumables and diets used. If reports or referral letters are required a charge will be levied dependent on the time taken to formulate the necessary material.

We are always happy to provide details of our fees on request and a detailed invoice will be provided for every consultation, procedure or transaction. As of the 1st of April 2021, there will be a fee of £10 for any insurance form completed.

Due to an increasing number of missed appointments, we have implemented the following protocol: Should you fail to arrive for a booked appointment on two occasions, please note that you will receive a warning that a further missed appointment will incur a consultation fee which will require payment before any further treatment can be given.

Inpatient Care

Whilst hospitalised overnight your animals will be under the care of our on-call duty vet and a member of our nursing team. The nurse remains onsite and will perform checks at least every 4 hours.

Estimates

An estimate will be given for all medical and surgical procedures.

Please appreciate that any estimate given to you by our team are estimates only and the cost of treatment can change depending on what extra medication or treatment your pet may need. The VH teamwork with your pets’ best interest at all times and no two pets are the same.

It is essential clients ensure that their contact details are up-to-date and that they are readily contactable whilst their pet is with us as an in-patient so that, should any significant alteration to the planned procedure prove necessary, this can be discussed, where possible, prior to any work being undertaken. By signing the practice consent forms in relation to those animals undergoing in-patient procedures, services or operations it is deemed that consent has been given for administration of immediate treatment to prevent pain or suffering should the need arise where a client is not contactable.

Payment

As of 1st August 2021, all non-insured clients will be required to pay a 50% deposit of the estimated costs at the time of admit for any surgical or medical procedures. The balance is then due on the collection of your pet.

If you have adequate insurance cover, we offer a direct claim service if the total outstanding is above £500. In this instance, we will claim the invoices due directly from your insurance provider. Please note we will ask for your excess and completion fee to be paid on the day.

Financial responsibility

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 fees and costs of your pets’ treatments. 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.

Settlement terms

All accounts need to be paid on the day of treatment. If this is not the case an invoice will be sent out the following day and should be paid within 7 days. If the account remains outstanding after 7 days, a reminder will be sent. After due notice overdue accounts will be referred to our debt collecting agency or the County Court and further charges will be levied in respect of costs incurred in collecting the debt, such as production of reports, correspondence and court fees 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 together with interest on the principal sum.

Where possible any outstanding invoices will be emailed.

Inability to Pay

It is essential that if, for any reason, the account cannot be settled as described in the settlement terms above, the matter is discussed with a partner in advance of treatment being administered. Please note that instalments or part payments of any account may only be sanctioned by a partner and only in exceptional circumstances.

Pet Health Insurance

Pet health insurance against illness or injury can help alleviate the worry of meeting vet bills, particularly when referral to a specialist becomes necessary. It is advisable to consider the type and level of cover required as there are multiple formulations of benefits available.

As insurance policies are a contract between you and your chosen provider, for most claims accounts should be settled in full with the practice and then reclaimed by you from your insurance company. If your insurance company requires the practice’s input to complete the insurance claim form a fee, based on the time taken to complete each claim, will be charged for this service. If a further claim is required at a later date an additional charge will be payable for completion of any additional required paperwork. Continuation claims are charged at a lower fee as they tend to be less complex to complete and therefore require less administrative time.

Whilst many insurance companies offer a direct claim facility, we are currently only able to facilitate this in exceptional circumstances, for example where a large bill ( over £500) has arisen due to investigation of a complex case or where an emergency procedure has been required. Under these circumstances we will need you to:

● Contact your insurance company to give us permission to speak to them about your policy in order to ascertain if a direct claim is appropriate

● Have read through your insurance policy details and in order to confirm that your policy details are correct

● Complete and sign a form accepting liability for non-payment from the insurance company and agreeing that should the insurance company not reimburse the practice within 60 days of the initial claim being submitted you will settle the account

● Make payment of any policy excess together with the insurance claim completion fee

In non-emergency circumstances pre-authorisation will be required from the insurance company where time permits. This can take up to 7 days to obtain.

Authorisation for direct claims must be arranged in advance of the procedure being performed, and if agreed by the practice, claim forms must be submitted for completion at the time the work is carried out. As direct claims require considerable administrative effort and can result in a delay in payment to the business of several weeks, a charge will be levied for this service. If, after the initial claim has been made, you wish us to continue to make direct claims for an on-going condition, claim forms must be submitted at each visit and these will carry an additional fee for completion on each occasion.

Should the Veterinary Hospital authorise a direct claim please be aware that you will be liable to pay any outstanding balance should your claim not be settled within four weeks.

Ownership of 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 their results, ownership of the resulting record, for example a radiograph, remains with the practice and will be retained by us. Case history records, radiographs and similar documents are the property of, and will be retained by us. Copies with a clinical history will be passed on request, to another veterinary surgeon taking over the case.

Your Data

We hold records of your name, address, telephone numbers and email address, together with details of your pet(s). These will be used to send you reminder texts for appointments or preventative treatments and on occasions to let you know about special offers. Should you not wish this to happen please inform us.

Complaints and Standards

At Lincoln Veterinary Hospital we are committed to providing a high-quality veterinary service to all our clients. However, if you do not feel that this has been provided to you and your pet, then we need you to tell us about it as soon as possible to allow us to resolve the issue.

If you have a complaint, please inform us, in writing, of the incident, with as much detail as possible, including any names of staff members involved. Please address your complaint to

Mrs K Hockham (Practice Manager)
175 Newport

Lincoln

LN1 3DZ

We will aim to acknowledge receipt of your complaint either by telephone or in writing within five working days of receiving it. As part of the investigatory process, we may contact you for further details of the incident so that we can better understand what happened. We will also normally check your clinical records and speak to any members of staff involved.

If the matter is unable to be resolved following a telephone conversation; or where this means of communication is deemed inappropriate; or if circumstances dictate to the contrary, Mrs Hockham will send you a detailed written reply to your complaint, including her suggestions for resolving the matter, within 14 days of sending you the acknowledgement letter.

We will inform you on receipt of the complaint if either Mrs Hockham or the employee(s) involved in the complaint are on holiday or sick leave at that time as this may inevitably introduce a delay in resolving the issue.

If you feel that the matter remains unresolved, then you can contact the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons by writing to:

Professional Conduct Departments, Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, Belgravia House, 62-64 Horseferry Road, London SW1P 2AF

Prescriptions

Animals with ongoing illnesses need to be reassessed at regular intervals by a veterinary surgeon to ensure that both the best results are achieved for the patient and compliance with the relevant veterinary medicines legislation is achieved. The interval between re-examination appointments will vary dependent on the condition, the stage of the disease, together with any specific requirements set out by manufacturers for monitoring certain medications. It is practice policy that these animals are clinically examined by a veterinary surgeon at least every 6 months, however for some conditions a shorter interval may be deemed more appropriate by the prescribing veterinary surgeon. Please note that if you call to order a repeat prescription and we need to check your pet, we will need to book an appointment before the treatment is dispensed. All repeat prescription including written prescriptions will be issued for a maximum of 3 month’s supply. Controlled drugs will be an exception to this and preventative treatments (e.g. flea and de worming products) may be purchased for up to 12 months. Please note each case will be based on the Veterinary Surgeon’s knowledge and clinical judgment of the individual case.

When requesting a repeat prescription of a drug for your pet, please provide us with an update on their condition. Please also give 48 hours’ notice to allow a veterinary surgeon to check your pet’s records and considering the information that you have provided on your pet’s health, to ensure that prescribing the medication remains appropriate. We would also ask that an up-to-date mobile telephone number is provided, if possible, so that we can text to tell you that the medication is ready for collection.

Written prescriptions for veterinary medicines are available upon request. These can only be authorised by our veterinary surgeons and are restricted to animals under their care. This service carries a fee which covers the professional time taken for your vet to authorise the requested medication, provide dosage advice and maintain the required medical records for your pet.

When requesting a repeat prescription for your pet- there are now 3 options available-

1. Call the practice and choose Option 2

2. Email us on vhprescriptions@outlook.com

3. Speak to one of our reception team and they can put you through to the ordering line.

Return of unused drugs

Whilst we are happy to accept unused medications back into the practice for disposal, unfortunately we are unable to refund any payment made as, because they have left the practice, we are unable to resell them.

Variations in Terms of Business

No addition or variation of these conditions will bind the practice unless it is specifically agreed in writing and signed by the practice owner. 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.

UPDATED: July 2021.

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