The best place to see a doctor is nearly always at the surgery as we have the necessary equipment and facilities available for safe, effective examination and treatment (having electronic access to notes greatly reduces the chance of prescribing errors, for example). Additionally, home visits are time-consuming and doing unnecessary visits would reduce our ability to see greater numbers of patients at the surgery.
However for patients who are housebound (ie. completely unable to leave the house even with transport), this is possible and therefore doctors will see these patients in their home, as per recommended Local Medical Committee (LMC) guideline.
If you do need a home visit, please call reception before 10.30. A late request essentially means you are asking the doctor to leave their afternoon surgery in order to see you, at the expense of the patients they are booked to see.
All requests for home visits will be triaged by a member of the practice team in order to assist the GPs and nurses in prioritising visits. Your GP will also decide if/how urgently a visit is needed (please be aware that a request for a home visit does not mean that one will be undertaken if the GP thinks it inappropriate). Please bear this in mind and be prepared to provide suitable details to enable the doctor to schedule house calls. If you are a Carer or relative ringing for a patient, please be prepared to leave your name and mobile phone number, as we will not confirm a visit will be undertaken until we have spoken with you to ascertain more details.
We regret that we are unable to offer home visits for patients who are prevented from attending the surgery by lack of transport or childcare issues.
You can also be visited at home by a community nurse if you are referred by your GP or upon discharge from hospital, by a consultant; the nurses will also tend to visit the housebound only, and are likely to decline other requests.
You should also be visited at home by a health visitor if you have recently had a baby or if you are newly registered with a GP and have a child under five years.
Please see the link below, for the nationally accepted guidance for home visits, should further detail be required:
North Staffordshire Local Medical Committee General Practitioner Visiting Guidelines (External Website)