Home visits: love ‘em or loathe ‘em (I loathe them), they are a part of our everyday workload.
Finish surgery, hungry and generally needing a wee, and head to a visit with a heavy heart. We have started phone triaging, which has helped hugely to cut down on them, but we still have some to do. Some of ours up to 20 mins away, and when we get back to the surgery we face a bunch of paperwork.
And it’s all about to get more fun. With weeks to go, NHS England is still intent on implementing the removal of practice boundaries, but after giving a level of detail that I would expect from my three-year-old if asking her about which mortgage we should get.
There has been no national announcement, some surgeries havent even heard of the plan and those who have, have nothing to work with when deciding to opt in or not.
It think this may be the most extraordinarily ill-thought-through, politically-driven load of utter codswallop that we have been faced with in a long time.
There is talk of payment for GPs coming from a ‘national specification’ but no news about what that means.
We sign up people who we don’t have an obligation to visit we get less money, which is great for commuter areas, but not so good for everyone else.
If a person asks for visit who’s registered in London, but lives near us, we’ll have no notes, and no prior knowledge of patient. Do we visit? And if so, who pays for it – our CCG or their surgery?
Or do we send them to A&E, whilst at the same time slogging away doing unplanned admission no-care plans for patients who get admitted the next day?
Or, because no one is quite sure, am I to be paid to visit my own patients who live 100 miles away? If so, may I suggest all my patients move to the Maldives – I’ve always wanted to go.
So much could go wrong with the Government’s plans.
GPs of the UK, say no. Please. This is twaddle – and any money will dry up after a year anyway. For once, let’s stand together and refuse en masse.
Dr Stephanie de Giorgio is a GP in Walmer, Kent.