Not For Profit Vet Makes History
Since coming to live in France full time one major difference I’ve noticed with the vet care for our animals is the much lower cost here compared to the UK. It’s drastically different, which is good news for us, but it’s a topic I’m always curious about as it affects friends and family in the UK and the charity I founded, Schnauzerfest. So I read this news today with great interest.
A group of not for profit veterinary surgeries has become the first in the UK to become a community interest company (CIC), cementing their commitment to pets in local communities.
Animal Trust, improves access to good care including giving free face to face consultations to patients across all their surgeries, no matter who they are or where they come from. Knowing that charges for services like this can create a barrier between vets and pet owners, they provide appointments for free to help pets access a vet as soon as they need one. This is brilliant, and something I would love to be more available.
The CIC status is an important milestone for us, as it locks our commitment in law where our priority always is the health and care of the animals we see in each of our communities.Owen Monie, founder of Animal Trust
A CIC is a regulated, transparent structure with the primary aim to deliver value to society, rather than make a profit. Once established, the public benefit is protected in law and the social benefit can never be lost.
Since Animal Trust first opened in Bolton in 2012, they have established a total of nine surgeries based across the West Midlands, North Wales, Cheshire, Merseyside, Greater Manchester, Lancashire, and Yorkshire.
We find our clients travel from all over the UK to obtain the care their pets need, with patients travelling up from more southerly locations including central London, Sussex, Portsmouth, and Bristol, particularly for our orthopaedic treatments as they find that, even with their travel included, it’s still more accessible than veterinary practices in their hometown. The good news for pet owners is that becoming a CIC doesn’t impact who can join us, we’re still open to everyone – there is no eligibility criteria to meet to benefit from our services.
I think this model is great and something that would make a lot of difference to many people and animals if it spreads more widely.
For more information about Animal Trust visit https://www.animaltrust.org.uk/ where you can find your nearest surgery, and register your pet online.