27 January 2021: Tackling a subject that can often be confusing for pet parents, PetSure today announces a series of changes to how pre-existing conditions are handled across all pet insurance policies administered by its partners. These changes will remove eligible exclusions automatically to help pet parents access more claimable conditions across the life of their policy.
The changes, which came into effect from 1 December 2020, will also differentiate pre-existing conditions depending on whether they are curable (and therefore temporary), or more long lasting (or chronic) in nature.
PetSure CEO, Alex Thomas said, “As our pets grow and change over time, their health status evolves too. We don’t believe in blanket policy exclusions for the life of the pet. What was once the case two years ago may not be the case today. We know that not all pre-existing conditions are created equal, and that they can often be a source of confusion in pet insurance policies. That’s why we’re pleased to align our new policy terms with this philosophy, ultimately making pre-existing conditions easier to understand to help our customers get the most out of their pet insurance .”
The changes are:
- Moving away from a blanket classification approach, pre-existing conditions for pet insurance policies administered by PetSure will now be evaluated on whether they are considered a temporary or a chronic pre-existing condition. Temporary pre-existing conditions will be automatically removed as a policy exclusion if the pet hasn’t shown signs of that condition for 18 consecutive months or more.
- A temporary pre-existing condition is a pet health condition that usually resolves itself with treatment.
- A chronic pre-existing condition is a pet health condition that requires ongoing care or is more prolonged in nature.
- Further details and full lists of temporary and chronic pre-existing conditions can be found in the pet insurance policy’s Product Disclosure Statement (PDS)
- Unlike other pet insurance providers, it also does not matter when the pet was insured – the temporary pre-existing condition exclusion will automatically be applied given the pet has not shown signs of that condition for 18 or more consecutive months (pre or post insurance).
For extra peace of mind, pet parents can also request a review of any pre-existing conditions on their pet insurance policy at any time by filling out the pre-existing condition policy review form with their Vet, available at petsure.com.au/policytoolhub
“It is our ultimate goal at PetSure to ensure that our customers get the most out of their pet insurance policies, while making sure that they remain sustainable for all. We’ll continue to review and introduce new features to our policies through collaboration with the Veterinary industry to help customers get the most value, and help enable pet parents to seek Veterinary care for their pets when it’s needed without delay.”, said Ms. Thomas.
For further details, please visit the article on pre-existing conditions on PetSure’s Knowledge Hub at petsure.com.au/knowledge-hub/pecupdate
Differentiating between a temporary and chronic pre-existing condition
A customer’s puppy had Demodex Mites at 18 months before taking out a pet insurance policy. The issue resolved with treatment from the Vet.
Two years later, the puppy is diagnosed with a new case of Demodex Mites. Can a claim be made?
Yes, the first episode of demodex mites was a temporary condition that resolved with treatment, and is not excluded from the policy’s PDS. The puppy has also not shown signs, symptoms, or abnormalities in relation to the condition for more than 18 months.
A customer notices their dog is limping on its rear leg. The Vet diagnoses the dog with a Luxating Patella (a dislocating kneecap).
15 days ago, the customer took out a pet insurance policy for the dog, meaning they are currently mid-way through the policy’s waiting period for this condition. This means treatment is not covered by the policy given it arose during the applicable waiting period, as outlined int eh PDS.
Two years later, the dog requires surgery for the Luxating Patella. Can they claim for this condition?
No, both the customer and the Vet were aware of this condition during the pet insurance policy’s waiting period, so it’s not eligible for cover. Patella Luxation is also defined as a chronic condition in the policy’s PDS, so as a result, it remains ineligible for cover two years later.
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About PetSure, part of the Hollard Insurance Company
- PetSure provides a sense of security to half a million Australian pet owners.
- We are three different businesses within one – a global leader in underwriting, claims processing and administration services.
- As an insurance underwriting agency, we power the pet insurance propositions of more than 30 brands, including some of Australia’s most recognizable and prestigious brands, such as IAG, AAMI, Woolworths, RSPCA, PetBarn, Guide Dogs, Medibank, Bupa and HCF.
- As a global leader in pet insurance claims processing services we assess over half a million Australian claims each year and we are retained by leading pet insurers in the United Kingdom and the United States to provide claims processing services.
- Administration services is our third business arm: the financial technology solution GapOnlyTM. GapOnlyTM is a paperless claims service whereby a customer can obtain claims approval within minutes, without ever leaving the Veterinary surgery. It transforms the claims experience with reduced out-of-pocket expenses and is progressively rolling-out to Veterinary surgeries and hospitals Australia-wide.
- As an underwriter, administrator and fintech company, PetSure is helping to transform the pet healthcare experience of Australian and global pet parents, with a commitment to their lives with their pets.
- To find out more about PetSure, please visit petsure.com.au