COVID-19 Client Visitor’s Summary

Stage 4 Restrictions

Stage 4 Restrictions allows for veterinary services as an "Essential Service":

  • "You can take a pet to the vet" is defined specifically as one of the four reasons to be away from home, under the topic of ‘Care and healthcare.’
  • Leaving your home for ‘Care and healthcare’ is exempt from the 5km radius restrictions
  • ‘Care and healthcare’ is exempt from curfew hours

What to expect when you visit us

Clients or visitors are not permitted to enter the hospital.

  1. The front door will be locked (these instructions are on the front door).
    • Telephone us when you arrive in the car park (for appointments or collecting orders)
    • Telephone us to order all food or medication. (walk-ins may cause you extensive waiting)
  1. Clients are not permitted to enter the hospital.
    • Our front door ‘airlock’ will be used as a social distancing measure to transfer pets (and orders) between the hospital environment and pet parents.
    • Consultations will now be via pet drop-off and pick-up from our front door airlock.
    • You will need to wait in the car park during your visit.
    • We still need your participation in the consulting process either via telephone, or we are to trial Zoom Cloud Meetings to allow your “virtual” participation in the room. Please download the ZOOM Cloud Meeting application to your smart device ahead of your visit to speed up your connection to us.  (Google Play Store) (Apple Store)
    • All cats must be presented within a secure carrier.
    • Our cleaning protocols are thorough. These will still involve room cleaning between every consultation, even if only your pet has been present.
  1. We will no longer be accepting cash payments
    • Existing clients may choose payment over the phone using a card.
    • First-time clients must present the actual card that they are using for payment
    • “Pay Anyone” (OSKO pay) direct transfer is also available
      (we ask you to email us a copy of the payment receipt to avoid delays)
    • Openpay. Care Now, Pay Later, is an available payment plan we provide
  1. It is important that you inform us if
    • You have been overseas within the last 14 days
    • You’re experiencing symptoms (Fever, Shortness of breath, Cough, Runny Nose or Sore Throat)
    • You have been asked to self-quarantine by government authorities

Splitting Our Healthcare Team in Two

With daily rates of community infection increasing, we can no longer accept the risks of our entire team to work together. If one team member was to contract COVID-19, then all in-contact people (our entire team!) may be sent home to self-isolate for two weeks. By splitting our team in two, then we would still have half our team members available to continue providing our services. This will allow us to remain open.

We ask you to remain patient with us as we will have fewer team members available each day. This means things may get busy. We will be doing our best. Again, thank you so much for your patience and understanding thus far, we really appreciate it.

Reducing Our Opening Hours

With smaller teams available to work each day, due to splitting the team in two, we are reducing our opening hours.

Our temporary Hospital Open Hours are:

   Monday to Friday – 10am – 6pm

   Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays – 10am – 2pm.

   Surgery admissions will be occurring from 9.50am, weekdays.

   NOTE: Please arrive 10 minutes prior to any appointment and call the hospital upon arrival to check-in from your car.

Waived Weekend Surcharges

With reduced hours available in the evenings we understand that bringing your pet in out of typical business hours is more difficult. We have decided to waive weekend surcharges, both Saturday and Sunday, while we operate on the reduced hours detailed above. Public holiday surcharges remain unchanged.

Anti-anxiety medications for highly anxious (or aggressive) pet

As we are now running consultations without owners present (as detailed in our previous email) this presents some challenges for aggressive or very anxious pets. We are very passionate about a ‘fear-free’ approach and utilising anti-anxiety medications for those pets has become necessary, so we can safely and calmly complete their consultations and examinations. Medications will be dispensed in the days leading up to their visit, and instructions will be provided as to how and when to give it. Exception will obviously be made for emergencies or unwell patients, which are more time sensitive. Call us to discuss your pet's needs.for highly anxious (or aggressive) pets.

Veterinarians confirmed as an "Essential Service"

On the evening of March 27th, the Australian Veterinary Association received the following statement from the office of the Hon. David Littleproud MP, Minister for Agriculture:

“The Federal Government considers the role of veterinarians essential to the agricultural sector and therefore to our nation’s food security but also in protecting companion animals and our nation’s wildlife... The Federal Government will continue to work to maintain the essential role that veterinarians have in Australia during this crisis..."

 

COVID-19 and Pets

An excellent summary has been provided from the Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) that is essential reading for any clients worried about their pets during this time.

(28th March) UPDATE AVA Video: Belgium cat News Article: Brussels Times News Article

Here is the AVA-link to view their summary and short video

In summary:

  • all current evidence supports the fact that the spread of COVID-19 in the human population is due to close human to human contact and that there is no evidence that pets are capable of spreading the disease to humans
  • There have been two dogs in Hong Kong who have tested positive to COVID-19. This was due to close contact with their owners who had COVID-19. Neither of these dogs showed any sign of illness
  • If you are in quarantine, please keep your pet with you. However, minimise close contact and please wash your hands before and after handling your pet or its food and water bowls
  • Do not do anything to compromise your pet’s welfare. Your veterinarian can talk to you on the phone about any concerns you may have

 

Once again, we would like to thank you for your understanding, patience, and cooperation thus far with the changes we have implemented. This is a time of rapid change and we know this can be unsettling. We will continue to act as necessary to slow the spread of this virus within our community, and further updates will follow as required.