How to make the best use of your Practice (Home Visits)
If you are too ill to come to the surgery, your doctor will visit you at home. This would normally mean you are confined to bed or otherwise physically unable to come to the Practice.
If a visit is required urgently, please make this clear to the receptionist.
The decision on whether a GP visit is appropriate or not rests with the doctor. Community nurses are not employed by the Practice (they work for Sussex Community Trust) and have their own regulations regarding patients who may be genuinely housebound. This may not necessarily be in accordance with the Practice's guidelines.
GP Visit to Care Homes (Nursing Homes and Residential Homes)
All requests from Care Homes for a GP visit must be accompanied by a completed SBAR form and submitted before 10.30AM.
Information provided on the form will help us to triage the visit.
The visiting team comprises the Duty Doctor (this responsibility is rotated amongst all of our regular GPs) and our Paramedic or Paramedic Practitioner. They will a) prioritise each visit and b) allocate it to the most appropriate clinician.
Any delay in sending completed SBAR forms might cause unnecessary delay in getting appropriate help for patients.
Upon the arrival of our clinician, we request that a member of staff (RGN or Senior Carer) who knows the patient well accompanies the clinician to ensure best possible outcome for our patients.
GP Visit is Not Usual
In most of these cases, to visit would not be an appropriate use of a GP's time:
Common symptoms of childhood: fevers, cold, cough, earache, headache, diarrhoea/vomiting and most cases of abdominal pain. These patients are usually well enough to travel by car. It is not usually harmful to take a child with a fever outside. These children may not be fit to travel by bus or to walk, but car transport is available from friends, relatives or taxi firms. It is not a doctor's job to arrange such transport.
Adults with common problems, such as cough, sore throat, influenza, back pain and abdominal pain, are also readily transportable by car to a doctor's premises.
Common problems in the elderly, such as poor mobility, joint pain and general malaise, would also best be treated by consultation at a doctor's premises. The exception to this would be the truly bed-bound patient.
After initial assessment over the telephone, a seriously ill patient may be better helped by attendance at hospital - Examples of such situations are:
- Myocardial Infarction (Heart Attack).
- Severe shortness of breath.
- Severe haemorrhage.