Whether it be a home that is flooded, an injured pet or a damaged vehicle, claims service is the point at which customers judge the insurance industry. It’s a vitally important part of insurance that has been at the forefront of innovation over the years, making life better for customers.

So we’re proud to announce that RSA took home some silverware from last night’s Claims Excellence Awards, winning the top award in the Claims Initiative of the Year category for our ground-breaking Referral Vet Network.

The prestigious Claims Excellence Awards, organised by the Insurance Times, recognise and reward outstanding customer service across claims; from those on the frontline who have direct contact with customers in their hour of need, to the nimble and entrepreneurial who are changing the world around us.

So it was fitting that our innovative Referral Vet Network was recognised; created last year, it was a radical step to create an industry first in response to rising claims costs and customer complaints about the cost of pet insurance. Working with MORE TH>N and our partners Tesco Bank, John Lewis Finance and Argos Financial Services we built a network of referral practices (the pet equivalent of specialist hospitals) which would offer our customers a real choice about their pet’s care whilst helping to keep the cost of premiums more affordable.

I’d like to congratulate Brian Doyle and his team for winning this prestigious industry accolade. It is testament to their hard work and focus in delivering a ground breaking quality solution for pet owners, and at the same time helping to control claim costs. It was also great to share the evening and the success with some of our colleagues and partners from MORE THAN, Tesco Bank, Argos Financial Services and John Lewis Finance, who have supported us along the way. 

Karl Helgesen

Claims Director - UK & International

How the Referral Vet Network works

When a local vet refers our customer’s pet for non-emergency treatment, we want to give a choice of where they could go, rather than being directed solely by the decision of the local vet. By encouraging the use of a Network practice, we offer the same quality of care at a more competitive price – ensuring the customers’ policy limits go further.

We’ve addressed spiralling claims inflation by agreeing a cap on future treatment costs, and we’ve secured upfront discounts, allowing these savings to be passed on directly to our customers.

We now have 55 referral practices (77% of which are within an hour’s drive of our customers) employing many of the UK’s most pre-eminent veterinary specialists at leading practices and veterinary teaching hospitals. This gives us the competitive edge by enabling RSA to maintain strong cover levels for customers at affordable prices. Pet claims inflation is a problem for the whole industry and many of our competitors have resorted to lowering cover levels or significantly lifting premiums to make a profit.

Number of referral practices


Within an hour’s drive of our customers

We were pleased to join the RSA network as we recognise a growing need to work with insurance companies to provide healthcare that is affordable for both insurers and owners alike.

Duncan Midgley

Clinical Director at Rutland House Referrals (An RSA Referral Network practice)

Despite some initial opposition from some in the Veterinary community, we held fast, strategically engaging with industry bodies, local and referral vets, our customers, the media and Parliament to build and create a Network which offers our customers a real choice about their pet’s care at an affordable price. Already we have delivered significant benefits for us and our customers.

RSA is a leading UK pet insurer and it’s fantastic that we are taking steps to work in partnership with the industry to target claims inflation. This intervention seeks to deliver affordable premiums and ensure cover limits last longer – so far it has received extremely positive feedback from our customers.

Rob Flynn

Managing Director of MORE TH>N