Our Review of EUSOH
An alternative to traditional insurance companies, EUSOH (pronounced “you-so”) is a community-based, decentralized organization that allows members to share veterinary costs via local groups of other users pooling their funds together. Similar to a credit union or co-operative, each member submits a monthly fee (as low as $17, according to the website, with a $250 lump sum to begin) that forms part of their group’s shared pool. They must maintain a minimum balance in their share of the pool every month, which may vary depending on the number and cost of claims members of a particular group make.
Whenever a member has a veterinary claim, they submit the proper documentation through the EUSOH website to the group, where each member can vote to contribute a portion of their share to the claim. Unlike traditional insurance, approvals or rejections are made by individual members with little to no involvement of company decision makers.
Should claims be accepted, the user can access the group’s funds to an annual limit of $8,500 per member. EUSOH claims that members save an average of 55% on common veterinary costs as compared to traditional providers. Members are free to choose their own veterinary providers, but must be cautious, since if their provider is more expensive than others, the group will not cover those costs.
Covering a fairly broad range of accidents and illness, EUSOH offers no set plans, and instead provides users with great flexibility to claim services included on their coverage list. The simple website provides an easy-to-understand explanation of how EUSOH works and their exclusions, but cannot provide extensive details on costs and reimbursements as they may vary depending on the group.
Breadth of Coverage
EUSOH covers insurance for cats and dogs, with no mention of exotics or other animals. There are no age or breed limits set out by the company for either pet type, and the coverage applies across the United States wherever there are coverage groups available.
In keeping with national insurance providers, EUSOH does not cover pre-existing conditions, cosmetic, or breeding-related services. A full list of exclusions appear on the website in the How It Works section, as well as in the Membership Agreement template accessible at the bottom of the page. Unlike many providers, there are no plans or tiers of coverage as each claim is subject to approval by the member’s own group. This makes assessment and estimates of monthly costs difficult, if not impossible, to provide in advance.
As a cooperative coverage organization, EUSOH does not offer plans in the same way that traditional insurance providers do. Instead, members can claim expenses on the coverage list with their local group and await approval from the other members for reimbursement.
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Accessibility of Products
EUSOH members pay an average of $40 per month, with $17 of that payment going to EUSOH as profit and the remainder going towards the funding pool. In the event that a procedure or treatment costs more than what the group coverage provides, the individual member must pay the variance, not the group. Payments can be made through ACH, credit card, and debit, and are all done through the dashboard on the member website. As there are no set plans, members are free to claim anything they want on the coverage list as needed. There are no group discounts as the structure of the company itself is based on a group model.
Transparency is the stated bedrock of EUSOH’s approach to coverage and the website reflects this. In addition to simple, easy-to-understand explanations of how the membership works, the EUSOH website also features videos to help provide visitors with a visual understanding of the company’s operations and benefits of membership.
Specific policy details, however, are only available during the registration process and not readily accessible on the website for visitors who have not yet made a buying decision. There is a Membership Agreement template available at the bottom of the website, but as it sits next to the Terms of Service, it can easily be overlooked by many visitors. To register, users provide their information, pet name, age, breed, and sex, and bililng information.
Ease of Use
Both EUSOH’S desktop and mobile websites load quickly and provide a very user-friendly browsing and scrolling experience. Information on pricing, coverage, and limitations are stated in the FAQ and How It Works sections to a basic degree, though visitors must go through the registration process to obtain detailed policy and legal information. There are a few customer testimonials on the main landing page for users to read and review.
Given EUSOH’S unique operational structure, there are no “Get a Quote” buttons or floating windows as reimbursements are determined by each individual user within their coverage group. All claims must be submitted electronically via the member dashboard on the website.
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EUSOH’S blog features both informative and expert-written entries on pet health, adoption, COVID-19 precautions, and so on, and also has some personal entries by EUSOH contributors sharing anecdotal stories and tips and tricks. There is a sense that the leadership, staff, and membership ruly care for animals and their well-being. There does not appear to be any particular pet charity that EUSOH uniquely sponsors or supports, though the Press section reveals that EUSOH has helped support adoption drives and local efforts.
Established in 2017, EUSOH is one of the youngest nationwide pet care coverage providers and they appear to have grown very quickly into a national alternative to traditional pet insurance. As a startup, EUSOH received $2 million dollars in seed funding that was largely crowd sourced by friends and family, according to the article in their Press section. Market share is difficult to assess based on the website presence in its current form, though the cooperative cost-sharing model definitely would have an appeal with American pet owners who want to avoid high veterinary costs. The website has room to expand on EUSOH’s unique market position, either with more videos or infographics.