Have you recently added a dog or cat to your family? If so, you may be wondering how pet insurance works. Unlike human HMOs and PPOs, there are no managed networks to deal with when purchasing pet health insurance.
Pet Insurance Basics
When it comes to pet care and the use of insurance, you can use any veterinarian in the U.S. or Canada that you wish. Here’s how pet insurance plans work:
- Purchase Coverage – When it comes to pet insurance, there are many providers to choose from. Pay attention to pet insurance rates when choosing the company you will purchase your policy from. Rates, coverages and exclusions can vary widely from company to company. You should also be aware that you will be charged a higher rate for an older pet.
- Print Out Your Claim Forms – Before you visit your veterinarian, print out a claim form from your provider’s website or grab copies of claim forms that have been sent to you in the mail.
- Visit Your Vet – Visit your veterinarian for your pet’s appointment. If your pet’s appointment is covered by your pet insurance coverage you can ask the receptionist or assistant to fax your completed claim form and your vet bill to the insurance company before you leave the office. Alternatively, you can take the forms with you and mail them when you get home.
- Wait – You’ve now done everything that you can do on your end. Once your insurance provider receives the claim form, the form will be reviewed and a determination of coverage will be made. Your provider may require more information before completing your claim. If this is the case, contact your veterinarian to see if they can send the information asked for to help expedite the process. Once your claim is processed and accepted, you will be reimbursed as outlined in your policy documents.
There’s little doubt that veterinary care can be expensive. For many people, having pet insurance can help make veterinary procedures and surgeries more affordable. Keep in mind that you will have to pay for services rendered before you leave the vet’s office; do not neglect to save money for unexpected trips to the vet for your pets. Find more information by clicking here or check out our frequently asked questions.
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