Housecalls in general practice

Ir Med J. 2012 Jun;105(6):170-1.


Home visits by General Practitioners have declined in many countries. We performed a study of home visits in an inner city practice in Dublin. We noted that rates of housecalls have declined at our practice in recent years from an average of 45 per month in 2006 to an average of 35 per month in 2010. We found that 88 (88%) of the recent housecalls we undertook had a valid medical or social indication in the opinion of the visiting GP. 21 housecalls (21%) were done for solely social reasons. The vast majority of our recent housecalls i.e. 91 (91%) were to patients who are entitled to free medical care under the General Medical Services scheme and 75 (75%) were to patients who were over 65 years of age. 87 housecalls (87%) were to patients with multiple morbidities. With our ageing population it is likely that the housecall will not vanish from clinical practice.

MeSH terms

  • General Practice / organization & administration*
  • Health Services Research
  • House Calls / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Urban Health Services / organization & administration
  • Urban Population