It has long been a tradition for the British GP to visit their patients at home. This is almost unheard of in many countries, such as the United States. However, as demand on the GP's time has increased over the years, home visits must be reserved for patients who are housebound or too ill or incapacitated that they cannot come, or be brought, to the surgery. Going out on a visit takes the doctors away from the surgery for about 4-5 times the duration of a usual appointment, putting a significant demand on resources.
In most cases patients will be expected to come to the surgery. In almost all cases children can be brought to the surgery where we have the best conditions for examination. This is safer for your child, as urgent problems can be referred to hospital quickly.
If you do need a home visit please telephone the surgery before 10.00am if possible. This will help the doctors to divide up and plan their visits which will normally be made after morning surgery, with some visits being made in the afternoon. Late requests mean the On Duty doctor may have to leave the surgery, resulting in less cover for emergencies presenting to the practice, and sometimes the visit may need to be deferred until the next day if it has been assessed as safe to do so.
If you think the visit cannot wait until the usual visit time and is an emergency, please advise the receptionist accordingly.
The lack of transport or cost of travel can not be a consideration in requests for home visits, it is expected that you will access transport with family, friends or by taxi.