A supervisory campaign carried out by Finnish Regional State Administrative Agencies revealed that not all veterinary clinics are familiar with the requirement to display prices on their Internet sites as set out in the Price Indication Decree.
In accordance with the decree issued on the indication of consumer product prices, the “Price Indication Decree”, service providers must have their prices on display on their business websites. Price lists enable consumers to compare the prices of different companies.
The price list must indicate sales prices. If precise sales prices cannot be provided, the company must indicate how sales prices are set (for example, EUR x / hr). If the company provides so many services that it is not possible to include all of the prices on the list, it is sufficient to provide the sales prices of the most common services or indicate how they are set. In such cases, the price list must specify that a full price list for all services is available and the consumer must be provided with this information on request.
The Regional State Administrative Agencies assessed how well veterinary clinics comply with their obligation to present their price lists on their websites. The supervisory campaign was carried out during the period March-May 2015 in all Regional State Administrative Agency areas and the Åland Islands. Almost 260 websites were analysed. The campaign also sought to improve awareness of price indication regulations and promote compliance with them.
There were deficiencies in the price lists of slightly less than half of the inspected websites. In most such cases, the prices were not presented on the website, or the list was very brief. Most of these clinics were not aware of the obligation to present their prices online. Generally the clinics quickly rectified these deficiencies after the Regional State Administrative Agency contacted the entrepreneur in question.
The supervisory campaign improved awareness of the content of the Price Indication Decree among veterinary clinics. The inspectors also provided the companies with information on other price listing requirements as necessary.
The Regional State Administrative Agencies and the Consumer Ombudsman will continue supervision related to display of price lists of services as part of their general supervision duties concerning indication of prices.
KKV press release 4 March 2015: Regional State Administrative Agencies will check prices on veterinary clinic websites