Why call before 1030am?
We prefer you to call before 10.30am because there are more doctors available for visits in the morning than in the afternoon – in fact, there are usually 4 doctors available for home visits in the morning and only 1 in the afternoon; the one in the afternoon is also our emergency on-call doctor for the day who will be very busy doing an emergency surgery.
Only ask for a Home Visit if you are truly house bound
House visits are only available for patients who are housebound because of illness or disability. Home visits are at the discretion of your doctor. Please do not ask the doctor to call unless the patient is genuinely too ill or unable to come to the surgery.
Don't have a car?
If the reason that you cannot get to the surgery is because you don’t have a car, then please think about getting a bus, taxi or getting a friend or relative to get you here. We appreciate that patients may have difficulty with transport, however a lack of transport does is not a good reason for the doctor to do a house call. A doctor will assess each house call request on medical grounds.
My mum is 85 years old. Can she have a home visit?
Old age is also not a reason to request a home visit. Many people are active in their older years. We would encourage you to come and see the doctor or nurse at the surgery - even if it means getting a relative or neighbour to take you, or taking a bus or taxi. Getting out and about will help maintain your mobility and activity. And it's not just good for you physically, but mentally too. Breathing fresh air feels good!
Why we prefer to see you in surgery rather than at your home?
There are several reasons why the doctors prefer to see you at the practice than at your home.
- Firstly, there are better facilities for examining and treating patients at the Health Centre than at your home.
- We can see more patients if we see them at the surgery. An average home visit takes 45 minutes (including travel time). At the surgery, we could have seen 4 patients in that time.
- And finally, for many patients it is nourishing for the soul to get out of the house once in a while.
For those of you who have cats and dogs...
Please keep your pets in a different room when a doctor visits.
We know people love their pets and we admire that. However, you also have to remember...
- There are people who are allergic to them. Did you know 40 percent of the population are allergic to dogs (and it is 60 percent for cats).
- There are people who are scared of them (no matter how cute they look) - it's not surprising considering over 15 000 post men/women have been attacked by dogs in the last 5 years simply for doing their jobs!
- There are people who simply don't want fluff and fur all over their nice clothes.
In addition, with respect to doctors and nurses - please also remember that they have to look professional to other patients they see after you. What conclusions do you think another patient might make of a doctor or nurse who is covered in a few dog or cat hairs? Would they still look clean and smart? And what if a doctor then causes an allergy in a subsequent patient who is allergic to cats and dogs? All these things have to be considered.
- Therefore, even if your pet has a nice temperament, please keep them securely in a different room for the duration the doctor or nurse are with you.
- Our staff have been instructed to exercise their right to leave your home if you do not do this.
We know you love your pets, but do remember that we come out to see you because we want to help you. We don’t like coming back to the surgery with an allergy, a bite or even just our clothes covered in fur. All we are asking of you is to think about us too. We hope that you will consider this fair.
What the government say about dogs
Irresponsible dog owners who allow their dog to attack people or assistance dogs will face tougher prison. Changes to the Dangerous Dogs Act will also mean dog owners can now face prosecution if their dog attacks a person in their home or on any private property, except if they attack a trespasser. The maximum sentences for allowing a dog to attack someone have also been substantially increased. The maximum prison sentences in England and Wales are now:
- Up to 14 years, from two years, for a fatal dog attack.
- Up to five years, from two years, for injury.
- Up to three years if an assistance dog is attacked.
Animal Welfare Minister Lord de Mauley said:
- Dog attacks can have horrific consequences for victims and families and it is only right those responsible should face tough punishments.
- Irresponsible dog owners will not only face longer prison sentences, but will also be liable for prosecution regardless of where an attack takes place, even in their own home. This will give protection to those who provide vital services in the community – postal workers, nurses, utility workers – as well as people visiting family and friends.