You’ve probably heard it before: Veterinarians accused of only being in it for the money. But as we all know, medical care for pets is costly, and most veterinarians are barely breaking even. (Which sucks when you have vet school bills to pay.) It’s hard for people to understand the true cost of healthcare period, since we’re mostly unaware of the cost of our own healthcare, thanks to insurance companies and Medicaid/Medicare. It’s led to a popular joke around here: “Too bad there's no Obamacare for pets.”
It’s no different over in the United Kingdom, as Veterinary Care Assistant Tracey Morgan writes in her opinion piece "There Is No NHS for Animals" over on the Huffington Post's UK website. Morgan says nothing we’ve haven’t already said before, but she does make a point of breaking down the real cost of human healthcare:
“As humans in the UK we are incredibly lucky to have the [National Health Service], so let's look at how much human care actually costs. Well for a ten minute consult with a GP we cost the NHS between £45-70 (without taking anything away from GP's who do a fantastic job, let's not forget most humans can tell their GP how they are feeling — it is much harder to diagnose an animal), to see a specialist for a consultation will be from £200 upwards. Surgery? For a human hysterectomy costs are around £5000, for a female dog the cost of a spay is around £90-£180.
Medical care costs, full stop.”
Should there be an Obamacare/NHS for pets? It might solve a lot of problems if there were — and cause a whole host of new problems paperwork wise, too. Is that a distant but possible future program for the U.S. or U.K. as pets become more and more like family members? Only time will tell.
Read the whole piece here, and let us know your thoughts in the comments.