Out of Hours (OOH) refers to the arrangements we make for emergency care and appointments for your pets outside our normal opening hours.
This applies to night times, weekends outside normal opening hours and all Bank Holidays.
Up until now, we have run an “On Call” service for our OOH service. This meant that vets and nurses who had worked a full day shift and were due to work the next day too, took an emergency phone home and were often needed to come out to see appointments or do operations at any time of day or night.
Vets Now are a dedicated emergency vets who are only open at nights, weekends and bank holidays. Their fully qualified staff are on site all the time ready and waiting and inpatients receive an excellent standard of care. The staff receive regular training in emergency medicine. As they have not worked during the day, they are well rested and can provide the best care without having to cope with lack of sleep. This will allow us to raise the quality of the OOH service we provide to you and your pet.
We truly believe that this is a safer and better service for your pets both during the OOH period and normal opening hours.
Yes, in order to reduce the chance that you will need to use the Out of Hours Service, we are increasing our opening hours on a Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the Oundle Surgery. This means we will be able to see more appointments and deal with more emergencies on the day.
Using the Vets Now service is easy. If you require assistance or advice outside our normal opening hours, do the same as you do presently. Call us on the normal practice number and you will hear a message which will give you the emergency contact number.
If you require a consultation at the clinic, the fee if £48 plus a surcharge of £113 before 11pm and £159 after 11pm. Any treatment costs are additional to this. You will be given an estimate of any costs expected. Vets Now are a separate company so you will need to pay them directly for their services. Vets Now fees should be covered in the same way as any other veterinary fees by your insurance company.
The trained staff at Vets Now can always offer expert advice over the phone free of charge at any time. Only 20% of calls to their service result in an appointment.
The Vets Now in Peterborough is based at the Pengelly and Mizen Veterinary Surgery, postcode PE1 2TR and the Vets Now in Northampton is based at the VetSavers Veterinary Surgery, postcode NN5 6HN. If you do not have transport, see question 12.
Vets Now is fully equipped to do emergency surgery and hospitalise patients overnight. If your pet does have to stay, you can arrange to receive regular updates on their condition. In the morning, if your pet is well enough to travel, you will need to collect them from the Vets Now surgery before 8.30am, either to go home or return to us for further treatment. If they are not well enough to travel, Vets Now may arrange for them to be cared for during the day by the clinic they are based at in Peterborough.
In an emergency, it will nearly always be best for your pet to come into the clinic to receive immediate attention and have direct access to the full range of facilities. In order to make home visits, the vet at Vets Now would need to arrange for cover so that they can leave the inpatients in the care of another vet. For this reason, they only attend pets at home if there is a clear medical need.
After any appointment at Vets Now, we will receive a report to let us know what treatment was provided. If your pet is well enough to go home without further treatment, we recommend a general check up within 48 hours of being seen. If your pet needs further treatment, Vets Now will ask you to contact us as soon as possible for an appointment, and we can continue your pets care with our team.
If your pet requires continued overnight treatment, they can remain in the care of Oundle Veterinary Surgery. After the practice closes there is no one on the premises permanently until we re-open, however we have a Vet and Nurse team on duty, who will visit the practice to deliver inpatient checks.
Should more intensive care and 24 hour monitoring be required for your pet, or specifically requested by yourself, referral to Vets Now or a specialist service can be arranged.
We know that transport to the vets can be difficult especially if you need care out of hours. Animals at Home is a local service that provides a DEFRA licensed pet taxi that is available to transport your pet 24 hours a day. Their contact number is 07941 058548.
Alternatively, some standard taxi services will transport pets, please contact the practice for details and contact numbers so you can be prepared in an emergency situation.