Q#1: Is this a smart decision? Aren’t the premiums so high it will cost me money in the long run? A: Remember that pet health insurance not only supports you financially for any major, unfortunate incidents related your pet, it also helps you and your pet significantly with preventive care costs like vaccinations and dental care. Following your vet’s recommendations in those areas could potentially save thousands. Pet owners who pay insurance premiums have an extra incentive to get the pet to the vet regularly, which can help prevent many illnesses. Another important benefit of regular visits is the early detection of illness when treatment is usually more effective.
Q#2: What about exclusions? Will all my pet’s health needs be covered? A: While pet health insurance cannot cover every possible procedure, the insurance marketplace is continuously evolving as more and more procedures are developed for healing sick or injured pets. As these advances occur, insurance carriers will need to adapt their coverage options. Even now a variety of coverage plans are available. Find a plan that covers the services you prefer and learn about the Common Exclusions of Pet Insurance.
Q#3: What about additional costs like deductibles, co-payments and other fees? A: It is important to take into consideration that without a deductible or coinsurance, the cost of insurance would likely become unaffordable. These fees reflect the necessity for the insured to take some responsibility for healthcare costs while enjoying the safety of not having to pay the full amount of a major incident. So, keep this in mind when choosing a coverage. Many people who have faced a major incident with their pet have found pet insurance to be very cost effective.
Q#4: If I already have a pet savings account, do I still need pet health insurance? A: That’s great, and it shows what a responsible pet owner you are! But, these days quality health care for some major emergencies or serious illnesses can still easily outstrip a pet savings account. Consider dividing your investment between pet insurance premiums and savings deposits to stretch your dollars even further.
Q#5: What can I say to my friends who say pet insurance is not worth the money? A: Pet owners make a significant financial and emotional investment into caring for and loving pets. Health insurance is a good way to protect that investment. And, how can anyone put a price on the peace of mind gained from knowing you have added another layer of protection with pet health insurance ? Find out now why Pet Insurance is worth it.
Q#6: What if my pet has a pre-existing condition? A: Most policies exclude Pre-Existing Conditions. However, it’s not quite that simple. Some policies do allow for certain pre-existing conditions to become covered conditions if they have been treated and declared cured. If that condition occurs again, it may be considered covered. Also, having a pre-existing condition does not prevent an animal from developing another unrelated health problem, which would be covered as a separate incident. For example, a dog with diabetes can still break a leg.
Q#7: I’m afraid my pet is too old for pet health insurance. Is that true? A: It’s true that younger pets are less expensive to cover. Plus, young animals are much less likely to have a pre-existing condition, which could be excluded from coverage. And, because pets become increasingly prone to more health problems as they age, some insurance companies do not make all their policies available to pets past a certain age. But, there are still some that provide coverage options for older pets. In general, these are accident only policies. Go here to determine if your Pet Is Too Old for Pet Health Insurance.
Q#8: Why is pet health insurance even necessary? A: Most people carry home, auto, health and life insurance policies, which we hope we never need. But, few would argue the wisdom of paying those premiums to prevent the possibility of a financially stressful event in case something major happens. Pet health insurance has a similar function, plus it adds the advantage of helping pay for routine preventive care with the benefit of possibly avoiding a major illness.
Q#9: How can I pay for covered veterinary care while waiting for the reimbursements to arrive? A: Many pet owners make this work by using their pet savings account or special low or no-interest credit programs. The most important first step to get reimbursed for your claims is submitting claims as soon as possible and without delay. Because it takes some time to process claims, submitting claims quickly will result in faster reimbursement to you.
Q#10: How complicated is the process for reimbursement when I have a claim? A: The reimbursement procedure varies with different insurance companies, and some are more complicated than others. It’s a good idea to research claim procedures before making the decision to purchase a policy.
Find out if you need pet insurance.
Dr. Steve Pearson, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
Dr. Steve Pearson previously held the position of chief of staff at a corporate veterinary practice for over 5 years and is certified in Veterinary Practice Administration from American Animal Hospital Association. The statements made in this article are the personal opinions of Dr. Pearson and based on independent experiences and could be different from the opinions of PetPremium Pet health Insurance or any other pet health insurance provider.