Appointments & Scheduling
- How do I know when my preferred vet is on?
Visit our Vet Calendar. You can see who is working and at which hospital if you visit both of our hospitals.
- Why do I have to make an appointment?
Appointments are better for both clients and staff because they allow us to reduce waiting times and allow us to spend the right amount of time with your loved one.
- Why can't I make an appointment during the middle of a week day?
Between our two consulting periods in the morning and the afternoon, from 11am to 4pm our veterinarians and veterinary nurses perform surgeries and procedures, undertake house calls, monitor patients, write up extensive medical notes, research cases, look after boarders and perform administrative work.
- What time can I pick my pet up following a surgery, procedure or dental?
This depends on the complexity or length of the surgery, procedure or dental, the time required by the patient to recover, the nature of the illness if found and the scheduling on the day. Desexings, most dentals and some procedures are day-surgeries and the patient may go home in the afternoon or evening. More complex surgeries may require a day or more of recovery time in hospital with further monitoring, tests or IV fluids. We schedule on the day according to illness or injury priority and other factors such as perhaps performing an x-ray on a patient before a theatre time slot if the patient requires surgery. Our staff will keep you informed as we progress.
Payment, Accounts & COSTS
What methods of payment do you take?
Click here for our Payment Options page.
Do you provide accounts?
In order to keep our pricing affordable, we do not provide accounts. Why is this? If we were to provide accounts we would need to charge more in order to increase our cash-on-hand to pay suppliers and staff. Instead, we offer the financial services of VetPay for those needing a little help. For more information about VetPay click here.
Why do you give estimates and not quotes?
In a consultation your veterinarian may provide a price range for a treatment plan. This is especially the case where an immediate diagnosis cannot be determined and investigation or testing is required. Charges are incurred based on the care received and the treatment undertaken, not based on the condition. If, during the course of treatment, further action or medication is required, or your pet needs to stay in the hospital for a longer period, there may be additional costs in addition to the original estimate. The treating veterinarian will keep you updated with these additional costs.
Why is Veterinary care sometimes expensive?
There are a number of reasons for potentially costly care:
- Your veterinary bill is a reflection of the costs of maintaining a veterinary hospital. You can think of it like this: We operate as a mini human hospital with full facilities such as blood and other diagnostic laboratory, x-ray and ultrasound, other diagnostic equipment, surgical suite, dental surgery suite, sterilisation equipment, hospital consumable and waste management expenses, IT, accounting and consulting expenses, payroll for qualified veterinary doctors and veterinary nurses, continuing education requirements and expensesfor the entirety of our staff's careers, high insurance costs, regulatory costs, facilities management and rent or property expenses. The list goes on.
- Your veterinarian is not just a general physician, but your pet's surgeon, radiologist, dentist, dermatologist, ophthalmologist, psychiatrist, behaviorist, ears/nose/throat doctor, and veterinary pharmacist.
- In recent years veterinary medicine has seen a breathtaking level of advancement, often mirroring that of human medicine. This means more can be done to treat your loved ones than in the past. More advanced care options often equal higher costs if undertaken.
- Your pet's healthcare costs receive no government subsidisation or supplies price regulation, therefore compared to human healthcare it can seem expensive because the actual cost of human care is often largely concealed.
- Quite often surgical and other procedures involve a lot of care in addition to the work of the veterinarian that you may not realise. For instance even a routine surgery will often include pre-surgery blood tests, IV fluids and heated breathing circuits throughout, pre-anesthesia drugs, anesthesia drugs and oxygen during surgery, constant monitoring of all vitals throughout, post-anesthesia drugs and monitoring and pain relief and antibiotics and of course the assistance of nurses.
- All veterinary services and products attract 10% GST which goes straight to the tax office.
Why does the cost of desexing surgery differ between hospitals?
Desexing surgery is discounted by all hospitals as a community service for encouraging the practise. While discounted, we at Bankstown Veterinary Hospital do not reduce the quality of the care, drugs used before, during or after and the time taken to perform the surgery. We also use heated breathing circuits to ensure the temperature of the patient is maintained during surgery. Just like with any surgery, you are given the option of IV fluids to maintain blood pressure and allow quick administering of drugs in the event of complications and also a pre-surgery blood test to see if your pet has any underlying health issues that may raise the risks associated with anaesthesia. Your pet's health is our priority.
I have pet insurance. Can I claim at time of treatment?
Unfortunately insurance companies have yet to put a system in place like HICAPS for human health insurance, which allows immediate claims with your insurer. We hope they set something like this up in the future. Until this happens the insurance companies require you to pay your veterinary health care provider and then claim from your insurer, just like the old days with human health insurance.
What does pet insurance cover?
This is entirely dependent on the insurance company and cover you select. See above for independent comparison and review links.
Will you help me with my pet insurance claim?
We cannot submit a claim directly on your behalf but we will certainly assist with your claim where required by your insurance company. This usually involves your veterinarian completing a claim form your insurer will ask you to give to us and sending your insurer a patient history.
CARE & TReatment
- Why can't a veterinarian or nurse diagnose or prescribe medication based on a phone conversation?
For the same reason a human doctor cannot: it is both unethical and illegal. Without physically examining a patient, it is impossible for the veterinarian to come up with an accurate diagnosis and plan of treatment. A veterinarian can't make a diagnosis based on symptoms only as observed by an owner. The outward signs may be an indication of any number of internal causes with a wide variety of clinical treatments. A complete physical examination and possibly other diagnostic tests are required to determine the cause of the symptoms and best course of treatment. Also, some drugs are prescription medicines and it is illegal to dispense such items without a physical consultation.
- Why may I be informed that I have to bring my pet in before receiving a prescription renewal?
For the same reason a human doctor requires this. Our veterinarians have an ethical and legal requirement to ensure that the medication prescribed is continuing to be of benefit to your pet, is being prescribed at the appropriate dosage and any side effects are considered. Without physically examining a patient, it is impossible for the veterinarian to maintain a correct diagnosis and plan of treatment.
- What is the maximum length of medication that can be prescribed?
This depends on the medication and the condition it is treating. As a general rule, our veterinarians cannot prescribe more than 6 months of medication without a physical examination. Some medications and/or conditions require more or less frequent checks than others between prescriptions. Your veterinarian will discuss this as part of their treatment plan.
- Do you up-sell?
We will always give you the most appropriate care options for optimal health but we do not believe in recommending unnecessary treatment or products. The decision is always yours and will be respected. We are a private hospital and do not need to hit corporate sales targets such as publicly listed or other large veterinary groups.