Your Visit

More than likely, you have been referred to us by your Family Veterinarian, or possibly by a friend or family member in case of an emergency.  However you arrived here, rest assured that you have found the right place for your Pet to receive specialized medical expertise and for you to experience personalized service. To help prepare for your visit, here is some information you might find useful.

WELCOME

Consultations with a Specialist are available Monday-Friday.  Please call to schedule an appointment and bring or verify that we have received your Pet's medical records.  Please also bring any medications in their original container that your Pet is currently taking.  Upon arrival, you will be greeted by our Client Services Team who will verify information to help expedite the care of your Pet.

Then, one of our Veterinary Technicians will meet you and your Pet in an examination room to take a history and/or perform an evaluation of your Pet.  One of our Specialists will then meet with you, make an evaluation, and offer their recommendation for any additional diagnostics and/or treatment.

A Team member will then present you with the treatment plan and answer any questions you may have. Depending on the plan, we may need to keep your Pet throughout the day or longer if necessary. Please be aware that procedures which require sedation or general anesthesia may require an overnight stay in the Hospital.

Hospital Hours + Patient Care

Although office hours for our Specialists are Monday-Friday, 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Emergency care is available 24/7.  Because many of our Patients require intensive care or treatment on a continuous basis, our highly trained ICU Team that is overseen by one of our Emergency or Critical Care Doctors will be caring for your Pet while they are hospitalized.  After hours, our Specialists do remain available in case of emergency.  Your Pet will never be alone, and will be observed and cared for around the clock.

When your Pet is ready to go home from the Hospital, be advised that all Patient discharges must be completed by 5:00 PM (Mon-Fr), and by 12:00 PM on weekends.  You will receive a call in the morning after the Doctor's evaluation with a morning update and to establish a discharge time.  If a later time is required, please discuss with your Doctor at that time.

During your Pet's stay, we will do everything possible to ensure they are comfortable.  Although your Pet will be in a designated area, we always provide several blankets and make sure there is adequate padding so that they have a soft place to lie down.  If you wish to leave a special toy, blanket or article of clothing with your Pet while they are hospitalized, we will do our best to keep it with them.  However, with the necessity for frequent bedding changes, we cannot guarantee its return.  Please DO NOT choose to leave personal items with your Pet that have significant sentimental or monetary value.  Thank you for your understanding.

Estimates and Payments

Prior to your Pet being hospitalized for any diagnostic procedures, treatment, or surgery, you will receive a written estimate.  Due to the fluctuating nature of your Pet’s condition, and related variables such as duration and intensity of hospitalization, length of anesthesia, and types / amounts of medications administered, this is only an estimate, and not a final invoice.  The cost for treatment has a range of potential costs, and we will do our best not to exceed the upper limit of the estimate without notifying you first.  If you wish to be updated daily of your invoice in relation to your estimate, please let our Financial Service Representative know of your request.

Before procedures can begin, a payment of the lower end of the estimate is required.  At the time your Pet is discharged from the Hospital, any outstanding balance will be collected or any refund will be credited.  For those Pet Parents that have Pet Insurance, payment is still required at time of discharge.  We are happy to help with your insurance paperwork to facilitate repayment to you.

Please be advised, all checks are electronically verified at the time of payment.  Due to banking restrictions, if a refund is warranted upon the Patient's discharge, please note there may be a processing delay of 2-4 weeks.

If your Pet had any procedures requiring the services of Animal Imaging, please be aware that although we handle payments for them, they are a separate company, and may have polices differing from us.  You may contact them at 972.869.2180.

Occasionally, the Doctor may wish to "add on" a laboratory test after your Pet has left the Hospital.  They will always discuss the reasoning why and obtain your approval, as well as to notify you of the cost, prior to submitting the test results.  Once submitted, our financial department will contact you to arrange payment.

Please ask for information on payment plans such as Care Credit (www.carecredit.com) and H3 Financial Wellness Plus (www.wellnesspluscard.com).  You may apply online anytime.

Patient Updates

Each morning (including weekends and holidays), your Pet's Doctor will call the owners of hospitalized Patients to provide an update on how their Pet is doing.  The Doctors begin making these calls after all hospitalized Patients have been evaluated and medical records have been updated (usually before 10:00 AM but it can vary with Patient load).  You may call throughout the day to receive additional status updates by speaking with one of our Technicians or Patient Advocate.  Updates from anyone other than your Doctor will be limited to general updates and treatments provided by your Pet's Nurse.  Only your Doctor can give a prognosis, diagnosis and laboratory results.  Your Doctor may not be available for phone updates throughout the day due to scheduled appointments, emergency procedures, and surgeries.

Our telephones are staffed by our Customer Service Representatives 7:00 AM to 12:00 AM seven days a week.  After 12:00 AM and before 7:00 AM, if you would like to call and check on your Pet, the telephones transfer directly to the ICU.  If all Technicians are busy caring for Patients, leave a detailed message and they will return your call.  Please be aware that, although our Technicians can give updates on your Pet's general status, detailed medical information can only be discussed by the Doctor in charge of your Pet's care.  All afterhours messages for appointments, prescriptions, or other non-urgent matters are relayed to us the next business day.

Visitation

We understand how difficult it is leaving your beloved Pet in the Hospital.  Therefore, we welcome you to visit them during scheduled times.  Please keep in mind we are working around the clock with not only your Pet, but other Pets as well.  To help us give the proper attention and care for all Patients, we appreciate your compliance with the following:

  • Our visiting hours are from 7:00 AM to 9:00 PM.
  • We kindly request visitations be scheduled in advance.  Scheduling a visit allows us the opportunity to review your Pet's plan with the Medical Team and schedule around treatments or procedures.  Please arrange your visit with your Client Service Representative or Patient Advocate.
  • For safety reasons, only employees may enter the ICU.  Therefore, we will usually bring your Pet to you in one of our exam rooms for a visit (with the exceptions of critical Patients and those in need of oxygen support).  Our Patient Advocate or a Client Service Representative will be with you through the duration of your visit in ICU.
  • Patient room visits may be longer, however please know that visits can be tiring for your Pet and care is still needed while they are here so we may ask you to shorten your visit for their health and wellbeing.
  • Any questions you may have about your Pet during the visit should be directed to our Patient Advocate or a member of the Client Services Team.    
  • If your Pet suffers from separation anxiety, visits may worsen the anxiety rather than help alleviate it.  If unsure, ask the Doctor in charge of your Pet's care if a visit would be a good idea.
  • Please realize we are a Hospital with a very active ICU.  Depending upon how we are, visits may not be possible at all times or may be very limited in scope.  If an emergency arrives or if there is a procedure to be performed in ICU, you may be asked to end the visit, or to step out of the ICU.   
  • Visiting on the day of an anesthetic procedure is strongly discouraged.  Patients who are recovering from anesthesia need to be as calm and quiet as possible, and the excitement associated with your visit can cause unwanted stress.  In some circumstances, a visit during this time can impede a Patient's recovery.

After Discharge

  • A copy of your discharge instructions, labs, and other pertinent reports will be faxed or emailed to your Family Veterinarian.    
  • Should your Pet require emergency care, please take your discharge summary with you for the ER personnel.  Remember, our ER Department is available 24/7 should your Pet have any setbacks.
  • General lab results return in 3-5 business days, while specialized testing may require up to 7-10 business days to be received.  We promise to call with results as soon as they are available.   
  • Please understand that calls for general questions may not be returned until late in the day (after 5:00 PM) in order to care for hospitalized Patients.
  • After discharge it may be necessary for your Pet to continue with medications prescribed by your Doctor.  Prescription refill requests may require up to 24 to 48 hours to process as we are attending to our hospitalized Patients.  We appreciate your understanding and cooperation; we will make every effort to ensure that your Pet's medication will be refilled in a timely manner.  If it has been over one (1) year since last exam, a recheck will be required, or you may obtain refills from your Family Veterinarian.  You may submit your refill request via our website under the "Clients" tab.
  • Please be advised, you may not return prescriptions to CVSEC and/or receive a refund for dispensed medication once the medication has left the Hospital.  Also, due to legal requirements, we are unable to accept donations of previously prescribed medications.  You may, however, leave medications with us for proper disposal.
  • Your Pet's disease or condition may require access to a compounding pharmacy.  Compounding is the art and science of preparing customized medications.  CVSEC frequently utilizes www.pethealthpharmacy.com and www.wedgewoodpetrx.com for our Patients requiring these medications.  PLEASE NOTE that compounded medications cannot be refilled here (unless emergency) as we are not a compounding pharmacy.
  • If your Pet has been diagnosed with a chronic disease which requires follow up progress exams, lab tests / diagnostics, and medication adjustments over time, you may choose to follow up with CVSEC or you may choose to follow up with your Family Veterinarian.  Be advised that it is difficult to make medical recommendations if we are not the Doctor re-evaluating your Pet.  If you choose to follow up with your Family Veterinarian, they will oversee making any further treatment decisions for your Pet.  Your Family Veterinarian is welcome to contact us with questions on how to proceed, and we will do our best to respond to these inquiries as quickly as possible, but please realize we are also caring for other Patients.  If you have immediate concerns, we recommend you schedule an appointment with your Family Veterinarian, or contact our ER Department (after hours).
  • Your Pet may be going home with a prescription for a special diet.  We have a very limited supply of prescription diets.  Most are readily available from your Family Veterinarian or can be special ordered from them or on-line.