Home Visits Policy

Due to increasing demand on primary care services and an ongoing national shortage of GPs we have had to outline a home visiting policy.

Home visits are routinely carried out by our Paramedics and are reserved for the following groups of patients:

  • Terminally ill;
  • Bedbound;
  • Severely ill and cannot be mobilised.

Please remember that a doctor can see up to four patients in surgery in the time it takes to make one house call. Patients can also be examined more thoroughly in a surgery environment and there is access to all your medical records including those held on computer. Please help us to help you and our other patients by visiting the surgery whenever possible.

Babies and small children should always be brought to the surgery where we will do our best to see them promptly. If the Reception staff are made aware that your child is particularly unwell, they will do everything they can to see that you are not kept waiting unnecessarily to see the doctor.

Transport/social problems – We cannot undertake home visits for reasons of convenience, lack of transport, or because simply a patient is a resident in a residential care home, sheltered accomodation or nursing home. We will be happy to provide you with details of local taxi firms and volunteer car services. From experience, we are aware that relatives, neighbours or friends are often willing to help out. Our responsibility to you is to resolve the medical problem you have; your responsibility is to take all the reasonable steps you are able to, to enable us to do that.

If you are too ill to attend the surgery and require a home visit, please telephone before 10.00am, if possible. This will help the healthcare team to plan their visits for the day. Late requests often lead to disruption of the appointment system and excessive waiting times for others. A member of the healthcare team may telephone you prior to the visit to assess the need for a home visit and may decide that it would be better to see you at the surgery. Alternatively it may be that your problem can be dealt with by telephone advice and also prepares the health professional to collect some information required as necessary for the visit.

We would like to stress that NO patient in definite need of a home visit will be refused.

In the past , GPs were able to do routine follow-up home visits. Sadly, pressures of time and more patients needing attention means this is no longer possible.

Thank you for your co-operation.

(Marlow Direct Line: 01628 405526) (Lane End: 01494 881209)