Treatment for an incurable condition such as epilepsy, diabetes or hyperthyroidism can extend over the life of the pet, so pet owner needs to make sure their pet's insurance covers treatment over the course of many years
Mayfield Village, Ohio (Vocus) August 29, 2007
When a pet has a chronic or recurring illness, pet owners might expect that their pet insurance would cover the pet as long as the condition persists, just like human health insurance would. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, according to Laura Bennett, who co-founded Embrace Pet Insurance because she was frustrated by these sorts of shortcomings in the products offered by other pet insurance companies.
Many chronic conditions show up in middle-aged and older pets but, because our pets are living longer than ever, veterinarians are now encountering chronic conditions more frequently than before.
"I have spoken to pet owners and veterinarians about chronic and recurring illnesses, and I learned that some pet insurance companies conveniently categorize an illness or injury as a pre-existing condition after renewal, and then exclude it from that day onward," says Bennett. "That's why we have designed our pet insurance policies so that chronic conditions are covered, and have focused our efforts on ensuring pet owners have a reliable way to manage costly, unexpected veterinary bills."
Owners of dogs and cats can be in for a shock when faced with a large vet bill after their pet is ill or gets in an accident. Many vets now offer diagnostic techniques, treatments and surgical procedures that used to be only available for humans -- but the costs can be in the thousands of dollars.
"Treatment for an incurable condition such as epilepsy, diabetes or hyperthyroidism can extend over the life of the pet, so pet owner needs to make sure their pet's insurance covers treatment over the course of many years," recommends Bennett.
Here are some questions about chronic conditions that Bennett and her team of customer service "Embracers" are often asked by pet owners.
Which chronic and recurring conditions does Embrace cover?
There are many chronic conditions that Embrace covers, including skin allergies, osteoarthritis, epilepsy, hyperthyroidism, and pancreatitis. Embrace covers chronic conditions regardless of whether they are considered genetic or not.
Can pet insurance exclude chronic conditions when my policy renews?
When a policy renews, some pet insurance companies categorize all the illnesses that occurred in the previous year as pre-existing conditions in subsequent years. Most people do not expect a health insurance policy to work this way, but by the time they are faced with this situation it is too late to do anything about it. Embrace does not do this.
For how long does insurance cover the cost of chronic conditions?
Many pet insurance policies have payout limits on chronic and recurring conditions by applying a cap on the amount that will be covered for that illness for the duration of the policy. Embrace Pet Insurance takes a different approach, and lets pet owners decide how much coverage they would like each year. With Embrace policies your coverage renews in full each year and there are no per-incident or per-body system limits that restrict coverage further.
What should I consider when comparing pet insurance plans?
When you compare pet insurance plans, ask how a long-lasting condition would be handled, whether the reimbursement on the condition would be limited in any way, and whether any chronic conditions could become pre-existing.
About Embrace Pet Insurance
Embrace Pet Insurance Agency LLC is a specialist insurance agency headquartered in Mayfield Village, a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio. Embrace was founded by Laura Bennett and Alex Krooglik, pet parents who also happen to be insurance experts, and offers self-serve, customizable pet health insurance for dogs and cats. All policies are underwritten by certain underwriters of Lloyd's of London. Embrace is based on core principles of taking an open and honest approach with its customers that is captured in its Customer Bill of Rights.
To see what other pet owners think about Embrace Pet Insurance, visit http://www.petinsurancereview.com/embrace.asp .
Tim Cox, ZingPR
tim @ zingpr.com
# # #