Global IT outage – EMIS Web

Dear Patients, We regret to inform you that our clinical system, EMIS, is currently experiencing technical difficulties due to a global IT outage. This system is crucial for managing appointments, accessing medical records, and processing prescriptions, so this interruption may affect our ability to provide timely and efficient care. We have limited access to your

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Home Visits

If you need an immediate home visit, please tell the Receptionist. For major injury or critical condition, go to the Hospital Accident & Emergency Department. If you need an Ambulance, dial 999..

Our GP Practice is keen to ensure that we make the best use of our clinical staff, allowing them to provide the most appropriate care to those most in need of it. For the vast majority of patients, attending an appointment at the Practice is the best option for them and for the Practice staff. 

You may think that a home visit by a family doctor (GP) is best for patient care. Home visits are convenient for the patient, but offer a poorer standard of care.

This is because of:

  • poor facilities. For example, soft beds, poor lighting or lack of hygiene
  • inefficiency. The doctor could see four to six other needy patients in the time taken for one home visit
  • patient records that provide appropriate and safe care, are not immediately available; and
  • patient chaperones, needed to be present for some examinations, are not always available.

Many patients are requesting visits that are inappropriate or unnecessary. This has a negative impact on other aspects of our service. These visits take the doctor away from patients who may have a greater clinical need. Most of the consultations done during home visits could have had in the surgery. 

Some myths about home visits

Please note this list only includes some examples, and is not exhaustive.

  • Children, young people or anyone who is mobile
  • Lack of money or transport. This is not a medical responsibility. It is up to the patient to organise transport
  • Lack of childcare or been drinking alcohol and not able to drive. This is not a medical responsibility
  • Can’t get out due to bad weather. Remember that medical staff are also affected by snow, ice or bad weather
  • Timed visits between hairdressing and shopping appointments. Patients who are not housebound are taking doctors and nurses away from patients in need
  • Feeling well, but need a check over to make sure everything is all right. Our priority is seeing those patients who are unwell.
  • Other help may be more appropriate. For example, if you think you are having a heart attack or a stroke, please ring 999.

Where home visits are not appropriate

Myth Fact
It’s my right to have a home visit.Under the GP terms of service, the doctor can decide where a consultation should take place.
I should get a visit because I’m old.  Our clinical work does not judge based on age alone.
I can’t bring my child out in this weather. No-one will be at harm by wrapping up and brought in to the surgery.
The doctor needs to check I’m ready to go into hospital.Paramedics can provide initial lifesaving care. Patients are then looked after in emergency departments. 
 I’m housebound.  Being housebound does not always prevent use of transport.
I live in a care home. Many patients living in care homes still go to hospital outpatients and take trips out.
Can the GP pop in to see me?We have booked surgeries and cannot drop everything to visit people at home.

Where home visits are appropriate and worthwhile

  • Terminal illness: we have no problems seeing those who are at most clinical need
  • Bedbound patients: we have no problems seeing those who are bedbound
  • So unwell, the patient would be at harm if moved: we have no problems seeing those who are at most clinical need.

If you think you may need a home visit

If you are unwell and think you need an urgent same day visit, please call us before 10am on the day.

  • If you are mobile (own legs, using walking aids, wheelchair or scooter), we kindly ask that you see us in the surgery
  • Triage will always consider your request. We will ensure you’re seen by the most appropriate health care professional. We will also ensure you’re seen at the appropriate location.
  • If an Emergency Hospital admission is necessary. We may arrange this via the ambulance service without first seeing the patient. Only for cases where their medical condition make that course of action appropriate.

If we visit you at home and feel that your request was inappropriate, we will inform you. We have a duty to use our resources as best we can for the safety and benefit of all patients.

You can also have home visits at home by a community nurse at the request of your GP. Health visitors do home visits for new parents or if you have a child under 5 and recently registered with a GP,

AppropriateNot appropriate
BedboundNo transport or money  
Terminal illnessChildren, young people and anyone who is mobile
Would come to serious harm if movedSocial reasons or for convenience  

Remember: you do not have an automatic right to a home visit
Under their terms of working, GPs must consider home visits for medical reasons only. If you think you need a home visit, please call the surgery before 10am. All home visit requests get triaged to check if a visit is appropriate.

Always provide a current landline/mobile number so that the Doctor or Nurse can contact you.