Eligibility for a home visit
Home Visits are reserved for the following groups of patients:
- Terminally ill
- Those who are severely ill and cannot be mobilised
Please remember the following when requesting a home visit:
- At the surgery your GP will have access to all your medical records, including those held on computer. This means safer prescribing and assessment.
- Facilities are better for examining and treating patients at the surgery and more staff are available if additional help is required.
- More tests and treatments are available at the surgery compared to home.
- In our experience home visit requests for children are almost always inappropriate, we would normally expect them to be brought in by their parent or guardian so they can be assessed and monitored with the full facilities available at the surgery. This can often be done much quickly than a home visit therefore helping children get treatment more promptly.
- Home visits are time consuming for the doctors - several patients can be seen in the practice in the time that it takes to make one home visit.
- We cannot undertake home visits for reasons of convenience or lack of transport. From experience, we are aware that relatives, neighbours or friends are often willing to help to bring you to the surgery
How to request a home visit
Please request visits before 11am whenever possible as this allows our GPs time to plan their workload accordingly. Late requests often lead to disruption of the appointment system, excessive waiting times for patients who have booked appointments and inconvenience for other patients.
What happens after you have requested a home visit?
A doctor will call you back to assess your problem. This is to enable the doctor to assess the need for the visit and to determine if a more appropriate course of action is required. It may be that your problem can be dealt with by telephone advice, or that it would be more appropriate to send a nurse, or indeed arrange a hospital attendance. It also prepares the doctor to collect some information required as necessary for the visit. You may still be asked to come to the surgery, where you will be seen as soon as possible.
No patient in clinical need of a home visit will be refused one.
Who will visit me?
Other members of our team and community staff also carry out home visits. This includes our nurse practitioner, the community matron and the district nurses. We also have access to the AVS (acute visiting service). This is a service which has been commissioned to assist GPs with home visiting and is employed to cover home visits.
We cannot guarantee patients that a specific doctor of their choice will carry out the visit.