Today’s Veterinary Business Staff
Companion animal practices fared well in June despite the pandemic and economic recession, according to the Veterinary Hospital Managers Association.
A survey of 644 member practices revealed average revenue growth of 14.6% in June compared with the same month in 2019. The number of new clients jumped by 14%. June 2020 had one additional workday when Sundays are excluded.
“We have not seen increases in new-client numbers in several years; this is a significant change,” wrote Karen E. Felsted, DVM, CPA, MS, CVPM, CVA, the author of the monthly “Insiders’ Insights” report.
“It will be interesting to see if this turnaround holds.”
The VHMA survey showed that June revenue growth was stronger with feline patients — a 15.9% jump compared with 14.3% for canine patients. One month earlier, in May, revenue fell by 1.5% and 1.6%, respectively.
Patient visits also increased in June, rising by 2.3% compared with June 2019 after falling by more than 11% in May. Year to date through June, patient visits were down 5.5%.
Of more than 265 companion animal practices that participated in another part of the survey, 14% either started to resume normal operations amid the pandemic or never changed. About three out of four respondents answered that they “will continue to practice in our COVID-19 operational mode.”
Most of the practices surveyed, or 65%, reported that clients didn’t seem bothered by the cost of veterinary care and were willing to accept care recommendations. About 27% noted that clients were “more concerned about the cost but still accepting our recommendations” and 7% noticed that clients were “more concerned about the cost and accepting fewer of our recommendations.”
Dr. Felsted advised veterinary practices to “keep your prices, particularly those that are easily price-shopped, competitive and actively communicate the payment options you offer.”
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