I appreciate the last Banfield Employee who tried to clarify some misconceptions about the practice, but it was a little wordy... sorry!!
Banfield does push wellness plans, but again it is because, speaking from my standpoint, we do see so many people overspending for preventative care. It is absolutely ridiculous how much money is just being thrown away!! Our charges for preventative care (outside the WP) are pretty comparable to other vets in the area, by using the WP you can save 50% to 75% off that price!!
Basically the reason it works and the reason we can give you discounted prices IS:
Since you are paying for a whole year of services and so we are guaranteed those services (pretty much) if you went to any other vet or are not on the WP, think about it.. we are only guaranteed that one visit and those few services...
Therefore, you are being rewarded for continuing to use our vet and our services..
Our motto IS "Treating Your Pet Like Family" because, think about it.. you would want the optimum care for your kids.. you would want less trips to the ER!!
Even though our WP is not insurance, it is pretty comparable to it. I like to think of it this way..(maybe opposite insurance)
WE REQUIRE SAME DAY PAYMENT...but....
Insurance means you might pay a copay and most everything else is included.. but you get billed for other stuff
THE WP HOWEVER...
The $30 office visit is paid for (which would be comparable to a copay..am i right??)
YOU have certain services that are included (just like there are only certain things included at your doctor)
YOU pay for anything else that is done, but we do not bill you (we accept same day payment).
another controvercial topic: paying to cancel your wp
we charge you either for the services you received or for the rest of the wp year.. that is why we have it on an annual renewal schedule.. so really, you are only paying for what you would have originally owed us anyway if you pay for the out of pocket expeces or you still get it discounted by owing the rest of the year!!! (that means that paying for the rest of the year would actually cost you less than if you had paid full price in the first place!!!
TRANSFERRING is actually easy for the client.. (usually better to do monthly payments if planning on moving in the middle of your year term.. you wont have a high bill the day you transfer)
basically, your year starts over when you tranfer, so if you are 6mo in, it will then become your "yearly check up" instead of your "6mo". with monthly payments, you might owe for that month depending on when your last monthly payment had been recieved (whether for that month or not), you DO NOT have to pay another membership fee!!!!
IF you pay yearly fees.. since you are going to be "starting a new year" it charges for the whole year, but takes away the amount for the months you have not used and gives it back to you, but you are still owing for that additional 6mo..
HOPE THAT MAKES SENSE!!!!
Soooooo.. The employees at banfield are required to find out who owes what, call previous banfield to get records, and take care of all paperwork..
THE REASON WE ARE NOT ALL CONNECTED....
you would not believe how many pets we have with the same name, they are the same breed, and the owners have the same last name as well!! that is just in our city!!! 3!!!! since that is how we categorize pets.. pets name, and owners last name and then we just verify it is the correct pet because of the breed/color it is already more complicated.. now with this specific set of 3 pets, we have to always verify the owners first name..
so you can only imagine how difficult this would be to try to keep up with the whole nation.. we do have a corporate office who has access to this information, but since they do not run into these specific pets each day and also have the time to be more specific over the phone, it is a lot easier for them to have access to this information..
you do have access to any banfield though, no matter which one you go to!!
your specific wp items (vaccines, bld work, dental cleanings, etc) are limited to your HOME HOSPITAL which simply means where you SIGNED UP or TRANSFERED TO.. but you get what is called a TRAVELLING WP which gives you your free physical exam and the discount which goes with you wp at any banfield.. since our corporate office has access to this information, we can access it pretty easily, too!! all you have to do is inform us that you go to another banfield..EASY!!!
WE PRICE MATCH MEDICATIONS!!!
If you bring in an estimate or invoice from where you bought it before or even from petmeds.. we will match it for you!! the companies we purchase from set the prices and we only get so much production from it, but we would rather you come to us anyway.. JUST DO YOUR RESEARCH!!!
as far as upgrading Wellness Plans, we try to keep you on schedule so that you are due at the time of renewal.. and keep in mind that upgrading is the same as transferring.. you start your whole year over.. so if you have a puppy and you get all the vaccines when you sign up and then upgrad just before spay/neuter 5 to 6mo of age.. you will have those puppy vaccines still available, but not the adult vaccines when they become due again.. SOME vets will make exceptions, but some won't because we dont get production for giving you those adult vaccines for free... we really lose out, so some vets just wont do it and you will end up owing money anyway!!!
However.. if you are NOT SURE whether you are going to spay/neuter your pet, primary is best.. otherwise you are wasting $60.. we do recommend it though because you can lower your pets risk of certain cancers by 50% if they are spayed before first heat or for males neutered before that hormone change which triggers "spraying and humping"
anyway, i believe in the WELLNESS PLAN and in BANFIELD and that is the only reason i still work there!! I would not sell somthing i dont believe in and I would not work somewhere that i didnt believe in the ethics and practices..
Product or Service Mentioned: Banfield Pet Hospital Pet Vaccination.