There is a fairly wide-held belief that patients have an automatic right to a home visit from a GP. This is not in fact the case. Home visits are reserved for patients who are house-bound or have serious illness and are too poorly to attend the Surgery. Patients with certain severe conditions that can be passed-on may receive special advice on how they may be assessed and treated.
Although a traditional part of general practice, home visits are time consuming. Please remember that several patients can be seen in the practice in the time that it takes to make one home visit. So please help us to help you and our other patients by visiting the surgery whenever possible.
Although we understand it can sometimes be difficult to get to the Surgery, we cannot undertake home visits for reasons of convenience or lack of transport. Our responsibility to our patients is to resolve the medical problem they may have. It may be that the problem can be dealt with by telephone advice, or that it would be more appropriate to send a district nurse, or indeed arrange a hospital attendance.
Our Doctors will reach a reasonable opinion about whether to attend to a patient at their home based upon information received on the condition of the patient, and whether it would be inappropriate to expect the patient to attend the practice premises. If a patient is encouraged to come into the surgery, it is often on the basis that this is where the best care can be provided. The specialist equipment is located at the practice and tests can be carried out more easily here.
If a patient decides to request a home visit then it would help us if they telephone the Surgery first thing in the morning between 8.00am and 10.00am (01923 262363), except in an emergency. This helps our Doctors to plan their visits. Doctors normally do home visits after the morning surgery, so usually you can expect a home visit after 1.00pm.
If the patient’s condition deteriorates after they have spoken to us then they should call us back for reassessment or call 999 in case of a medical emergency.
The Partners at Vine House would like to stress that NO patient in definite need of a home visit will be refused.
Policy date: 14th January 2016