Here are some helpful guidelines for our hospital protocols and policies.
1. General surgery (e.g., neuter, spay, GI surgery, soft tissue surgery) can be scheduled on Wednesday. Dental surgery can be scheduled on Wednesdays and Fridays. To book a surgical or dental procedure, your pet must first be examined by a veterinarian. At the pre-surgical appointment, you will receive an estimate for the procedure. Estimates reflect an expected range of costs associated with treatments that may be needed for surgery. The final cost is determined when the charges are entered by the technician right before discharge. Estimates are an approximate calculation; we usually are within range but occasionally things come up which there would be no way of predicting. Please note that your pet will be staying with us for the duration of the day when they come in for surgery/dental work. We recommend having someone home for at least 24 hours post-op to monitor your pet.
INTAKE: We will perform a proper intake of your pet during the specified time on your estimate for drop-off. The front desk staff will take a credit card to keep on file for billing after surgery. A technician is available to answer questions should you have any. Please note that we have limited time during the drop off period. We ask that you discuss your questions with the vet at the pre-surgery appointment and please be patient during drop-off as it's very important not to rush this process. Your pet will be individually monitored by a technician throughout the entirety of the premedication, surgery and recovery period.
DISCHARGE: Discharges will be performed by a technician and you will be given thorough post-operation care instructions. The technician will review the patient-specific instructions with you, and you will receive a copy of the discharge
2. Cancellation & No-Show Policy for a Doctor Appointment: We understand that there are times when you must miss an appointment due to emergencies or obligations for work or family. However, when you do not call to cancel an appointment, you may be preventing another patient from getting much needed treatment. Conversely, the situation may arise where another patient fails to cancel and we are unable to schedule you for a visit, due to a seemingly “full” appointment book. If an appointment is not cancelled at least 24 hours before the appointment you will be charged HALF of the exam fee.
3. Cancellation & No-Show Policy for Surgery: Due to the large block of time needed for surgery and dental procedures, last minute cancellations can prevent additional or emergency appointments from being seen. To schedule an appointment for a dental/surgical procedure, we require a deposit of HALF of the low end of the estimate. The deposit is refundable as long as we receive a cancellation/reschedule notice at least 7 days prior to surgery.
4. New Patient Records: If your pet has previous medical history, please provide a copy to our clinic at least 24 hours prior to your appointment. This allows the vet to familiarize themselves with the medical history, and prevents delays during the exam. This also allows us to customize your pet’s vaccination and treatment reminders so that you can keep them up to date.
5. Emergency Walk-in Appointments: While we accept walk-in emergencies, we do request that you call before coming in. Our staff will go through a triage conversation with you asking you several questions which is then documented and then given to a veterinarian on duty. The veterinarian will assess the urgency of your pet’s situation to determine if another emergency facility is in your pet’s best interest or if we can accommodate at Alison. While we strive to accommodate emergencies and sick walk-in appointments, our facility is unable to take in emergencies that may require overnight monitoring or some specialty surgeries. Our verbal triage assessment is designed to make sure you don’t need to come to our clinic, only to wait and be told that an emergency hospital would be in your pet’s best interest. This way, we minimize excess travel for you and your pet.
6. Payments: We accept all types of credit cards and cash. We also accept Care Credit; our staff can give you more information and assist in application upon request. Care Credit is the only long-term payment plan we offer. Payment is due in full upon completion of services and exams. Overdue balances incur an additional $50 fee for each late month and will be turned over to a collection service.
7. International Travel Certificates: If you are planning international travel with your pet, please visit the USDA-APHIS website to gather all of the information and requirements for travel. This varies country to country, and you will be responsible to bring a checklist of requirements with you in preparation. For all international travel certificates, you are required to have your pet examined by a vet within the appropriate time frame. There is a separate charge for exam and international travel certificate forms. Your pet may also need vaccines, bloodwork or treatment before travel, so please be aware that you may have additional charges. All pets will need a current and registered implanted microchip for travel. Dr. Alex Klein is the only USDA certified veterinarian at Alison Animal Hospital.
8. Sedated Examinations: At times, for the safety and emotional comfort of your pet (and our staff), we will recommend a sedated examination. A sedated exam is a mild form of anesthesia whereby certain drugs are used to both calm the patient and possibly cause momentary unconsciousness. The patient continues to breathe normally on their own and the effects of the drugs are relatively short, lasting from about 5-15 minutes (and often can be reversed with additional drugs). Sometimes an intravenous catheter will be placed as well to deliver the medication and then removed at the end of the procedure. The goal of a sedated exam is to achieve higher quality treatment and diagnostic options which we could not perform if the patient were fully awake. Patient selection, condition of the patient, temperament and the degree of work to be performed are all factors in determining whether sedation is appropriate or not. During sedation patients are monitored using instrumentation with a doctor or technician by their side for the entire duration of the anesthetic event. As such, sedated exams are safe and offer the pets a better option of achieving a higher level of care. We do require that for sedated exams the pets are dropped off in the morning and picked up at the end of the day. This gives us the flexibility of performing the sedated exam when we have the maximum amount of time and personnel available. When your pet is with us for the day, we will make sure they are comfortable and relaxed. At pickup time a formal discharge will be performed by a technician or the doctor and the pets will be fully awake.