Pets provide companionship to a lot of people and are often considered an important part of their family. As healthcare emergencies arise with humans, the same happens for pets. Hence, there is a need for coverage at all times. Healthcare costs are on the rise, including veterinary consultations and procedures. Therefore, as a pet parent, you need a pet insurance policy to help protect your furry friend against unwanted costs should they suddenly fall seriously ill. This article contains a simple introduction to the concept of pet insurance.
How Does Pet Insurance Work?
It is the same as any other insurance, as you would be paying a monthly or yearly premium (an agreed fee, stipulated by your insurance provider) for the coverage. Your policy provider will list the health expenses covered and inform you of parameters like:
- Deductibles (the bills you must settle before the policy is activated)
- Reimbursement rate (what percentage of the expenses will be paid back to you)
- Limits (the maximum payout you can receive in a month or year)
Different providers usually have their own set of principles. However, most of these providers will not offer coverage for an already ill pet. Some allow per-incidence or annual options for the limits and deductibles. Premiums also vary with the extent of coverage. Hence, you can find a suitable policy that is within your budget.
When you take your pet to the clinic for a visit or a procedure, you must keep track of all the expenses and receipts. This is necessary because the insurance providers require accountability when you file a claim for reimbursement. While some providers reimburse the policyholder, others can reimburse the vet directly if they are within the provider’s network.
What Will Pet Insurance Cover?
There is no fixed set of rules related to this, as each provider determines what health expenses their respective plans will cover. Usually, it is safer to find plans that cover tests and conditions specific to your pet’s species. Typically, pet insurances should cover the following:
- Diagnostic tests (blood tests, ultrasound, MRIs, etc.)
- Emergency treatment of accident injuries
- Minor surgical procedures
- Medications and consultations for the management of certain diseases and conditions
It is important to note that these policies usually do not cover an already existing condition, vaccinations, routine, and preventative care, among others. Therefore, make sure to check with your provider if they cover some other special treatment options.
What Determines the Cost of Pet Insurance Plans?
Many factors influence the pricing of pet insurance plans. However, every pet parent should be able to find just the right one for their budget. While some go for as high as $50/month in premiums, others may opt for as low as $10/month.
Usually, lower premiums come with higher deductibles. Here are some other factors that will affect the cost of your pet insurance policy:
- Age and size of the pet
- Annual or monthly payout limit
- Policy type and provider