Like cancer care for people, cancer diagnosis and treatment for pets has made remarkable advancements through the years. Today, new diagnostic and treatment protocols in the hands of highly trained veterinary cancer specialists are improving the outcomes for pets. As with any life-saving treatment, this level of advanced care has its costs. But when you consider all the capabilities, science, and expertise now available in the world of specialized veterinary medicine, the cost is still considerably less than one would find in a human health care environment.
As with human cases of cancer, surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy are the standards when it comes to treating a pet. However, at The Veterinary Cancer Center (The VCC) we also want to make available less costly protocols that in some cases can be equally effective. This includes anti-angiogenic and metronomic therapies. The VCC also participates in many clinical trials that can mean substantial savings to participating pet owners.
To put all these costs into proper perspective and understand the true value associated with them, it helps to understand key factors related to veterinary cancer care.
The health insurance factor — When a person faces cancer, there are numerous costs associated with the care and treatment. Many of which are covered indirectly through health insurance premiums. Yet in veterinary medicine, less that 5% of our pets have health insurance. Until that percentage changes, a majority of these costs are carried by the pet owner.
The diagnostic and treatment factor — As in human cancer treatment, many of The VCC’s costs to deliver cancer therapies can be quite high. The equipment (ultrasound, EKG, linear accelerator, hematology equipment, etc.) and therapies we use are often the same used for cases of human cancer. Take chemotherapy for example. Most, if not all, of the drugs used in cases of pet treatment are the same as those developed to fight human cases of cancer. In fact, there are very few treatments that are created exclusively for animals. Safeguards required for both the equipment and therapies add another layer of cost and complexity when providing this level of advanced care.
The experience factor — The VCC has been able to attract extraordinary talent to our facility. Our doctors have over 30 years of combined experience in treating multiple forms of cancer. And our technicians are some of the most experienced in the field as well. In fact, we have the only certified Veterinary Oncology Technician in the tri-state area. Our staff is a critical investment that, when combined with the experience of your local veterinarian, ensures a level of confidence and assurance every pet owner would want.
Helping patients and their owners — At The VCC, our number one priority is to help achieve the best outcome possible for you and your pet, while doing whatever we can to help you manage the costs of care needed to make this level of care possible. We accept most credit cards, CareCredit® and Citi®Health, and would be more than happy to help with paperwork for reimbursement from your pet insurance policy. For questions about payment and finance options, just ask our receptionist or hospital administrator.
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