I think that many people consider a trip to the vets to be an expensive occasion with many considering the bills to be overpriced. Generally it is assumed that Vets are rich people that make lots of money. This may be the case with some, however with a lot of practices it is simply not the case.
The prices charged are very reasonable and fair for the work involved and it is very difficult for Veterinary Practices to make any profits at all within the first few years of opening a surgery as they gradually aim to update equipment and purchase new items in order to improve the practice and facilities available all the time as Veterinary medicine is always changing and improving.
In order to run a Veterinary Practice we firstly need premises which need to be mortgaged or leased. In addition to this are the additional costs that run alongside the building such as the gas and electricity bills, council tax, water rates, insurance, phone bills and repair costs as needed.
The practice requires staff; Vets, nurses and receptionists. All of which need to be paid, be supplied with uniforms, have paid holidays and go on regular training courses in order to keep their skills up to date with the latest developments to help ensure you receive the best possible treatments for your pets.
We need equipment such as Anaethetic Machines, circuits and endotracheal tubes and masks, X-ray machine and processor, Dental Machine, Autoclave, Surgical equipment, blood machines, tables, computers, kennels, vetbeds, washing machine, phones and much much more. (Many of which require regular servicing to ensure they are safe for use).
Equipment, materials and drugs such as fluids, tablets, injectables, suture materials, flea and worm treatments, foods, muzzles, needles, syringes, cleaning supplies etc.
Whenever a pet comes into the surgery for a surgical procedure this always involves at least three staff members. Clients are greeted by a receptionist. The vet or nurse admits the patient for the procedure. During the procedure, the vet always needs the assistance of a nurse and the nurse monitors the anaesthetic and records readings on a chart all the way through the operation. The receptionist mans the desk and answers phones during this.
It can also be extremely hard work in a Veterinary Practice with an awful lot of multitasking going on in the hopes of providing the best possible care we can, in as good and clean an environment as we can whilst also dealing with new people and queries from clients coming into the surgery or telephoning the surgery throughout the day. In addition to this, animals are not always predictable and can often cause chaos if they do not appreciate what we are trying to do with them.
Over all we all love working in a Veterinary Practice and enjoy the challenges it presents. However we would ask that people just stop and have a think next time they visit the surgery with regards to the work put in by all and the reason we charge the prices we do.