North Downs Specialist Referrals (NDSR)Hot
The Friesian Buildings 3 & 4 , Bletchingley, RH1 4QP, united-kingdom
North Downs Specialist Referrals is an internationally acknowledged centre of excellence for Specialist Veterinary Care, offering access to one of the largest groups of recognised Veterinary Specialists in the UK and Europe.
Our aim is to provide the highest standards of medical and surgical care for pets, in a caring and compassionate environment. We are committed to excellence in the care we provide patients and the service we provide to their owners and referring vets.
A friendly, highly trained and caring team of staff, dedicated to looking after you and your pet
Specialist level care for pets referred to us by veterinary surgeons across the UK
24 hour veterinary and nursing care for in-patients
State-of-the-art facilities situated in pleasant, clean surroundings
A commitment to excellence in every aspect of our service
Buildings - very nice and airy.
Reception staff - not so great. Like other users have mentioned, they do feel non-welcoming in general. Also, there are a huge number of them, yet they seem to be doing very little. I have asked them a number of times for help in getting hold of documentation, and its been a bit hit and miss (mostly miss). There were also quite a number of times where I felt I was chasing my tail, especially when I needed urgent vet advice and had to chase them for several days.
Finance team - I just want to groan - they have been really unhelpful - really, really difficult at times. As others have also mentioned, you do feel as an owner that they are very motivated to get their money out of you, but not to help facilitate this by sending the patient history, invoices and breakdowns to the insurance company. They seem very fixated on getting you as the owner to pay them an extra admin fee to do what should be part and parcel of their service. I was really disappointed with them in general and also as they specifically reneged on an agreement that I came to with their client care manager.
Client care manager - she is good at her job! Pleasant and tried genuinely to be helpful, but her other staff simply didn't stick to our agreement when she was away on annual leave. Also, no matter how much she wanted to help, the owning company have very restrictive policies.
Getting there - many narrow country lanes - I don't like doing the journey at all, but I've done it a number of times and I'm still alive and my car isn't trashed, so my advice is just take slowly when there's limited vision. I've seen giant trucks go down these lanes - thankfully we just missed being on the other side of the road, because I can't begin to imagine how we would have got past in some of the single lane bits.
My cat was treated well though, and ultimately she appears to have recovered (fingers crossed) from what was v. serious and a couple of years ago, would have killed her, so I'm grateful that she got treatment, but I have been to a number of vets and had a much better experience.
The service is inpersonal to say the least. Vet was brilliant, but cash is the main voice in this place. The admin staff have no concern at all that your animal has just been diagnosed with cancer, or even to listen to your concerns, just pay pay pay and pay now even if you have insurance you have to pay up front. Don't be fooled by paying the admin fee for direct payment. This is non refundable and if your insurance company pay you direct and you have to organise payment etc it will cost you more. They won't refund. I'm used to vets putting the animal first and foremost. Here, it's about how much money you have and not for me I'm afraid or my little cat.
Commitments were made (which I have in writing) to undertake surgery on my dog that was not technically feasible. In addition, the vet tried to withhold the consent form (for surgery) and would not provide a written quote for the work. I had to complain to the practice manager to get hold of this information.
When the day of surgery arrived, not only was the vet very late in seeing us (after we had travelled for hours to be there), but he had created a completely new consent form with a very different set of surgical procedures - in complete contradiction to what had been agreed.
It turns out that the surgery that he had originally promised (and raised our hopes with) was not technically possible - but he did not have the decency to inform me, or perhaps he just wanted to take more money for doing 'something' even though it was unnecessary and high risk.
A great deal of money was spent unnecessarily and more importantly, my dog went through painful and invasive tests unnecessarily. I walked out and contacted the RCVS.
It is only human to automatically trust vets - especially when your animal needs help - but I would ask anyone reading this to think as carefully as you can, make sure you get everything in writing and do not assume that all vets are honest or know what they are doing.