Wellness plans: What's your role?


Some pet owners are still confused about health or wellness plans. Some believe its a form of insurance or that it covers everything their pet needs while theyre enrolled. The answer lies in good communication.

>>Receptionist: Offer pet owners a detailed handout that explains the health plans you offer so they can review it while they're waiting to see the doctor.  Explain that it's a way to spread the cost of wellness services out over the course of a year. You may also help interested pet owners enroll at the end of the visit. When clients enroll, print and email the details of the specific health plan they signed up for and walk them through the services their plan covers. 

>>Technicians and assistants: Ask clients what questions they have about the health plans the receptionist introduced. Based on the pet, the client and their needs, you can make a recommendation about which health plan is best suited for the pet and client. 

>>Practice manager: Identify your goals. If your goal is to increase dentistry, create plans that include a dental cleaning in addition to the annual wellness services.

>>Veterinarian: Use plans as a payment option for the services you're already recommending. During wellness appointments offer the option of enrolling in a plan that includes the care you've recommended for the pet. 

Rate your success. My practice wanted to increase dental care, so we promoted a plan with dental cleaning. Our dentistry numbers are up 12 percent in the last year, and almost 15 percents of our active client base is enrolled in a health plan.

Kelly Searles is the practice manager at  Bigger Road Veterinary Clinic in Kettering, Ohio.

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