Ask Sheila - Archive England

Sheila Scott OBE has now retired and therefore is no longer available to answer your social care questions. However, you might still find the answer you’ve been searching for down below.

01st March 2016

GP: Duty of Care towards non-patients

What immediate action should one take when the receptionist informed the practice nurse that an elderly lady who is not a patient of the surgery has collapsed on the pavement in front of the the GP surgery, who required medical action?

Apart from calling for an ambulance, should the clinic bring the lady in and start resuscitation?



I was pleased to be able to ask QCS's GP practice expert contributor Alison Lowerson and this is her response.

Practices have a contractual duty to provide emergency treatment and immediately necessary treatment. There is no definition of immediately necessary treatment in primary medical services contract regulations but is subject to the contractor’s clinical judgement.

As far as Nurses are concerned, the NMC website states; ‘The Code contains the professional standards that registered nurses and midwives must uphold’:

15. Always offer help if an emergency arises in your practice setting or anywhere else.

To achieve this, you must:

15.1 Only act in an emergency within the limits of your knowledge and competence;

15.2 Arrange, wherever possible, for emergency care to be accessed and provided promptly, and;

15.3 Take account of your own safety, the safety of others and the availability of other options for providing care.

I hope this helps.

Best wishes.


*All information is correct at the time of publishing.

About Sheila

Sheila Scott OBE has now retired and over the years , prior to her retirement she has answered thousands of your social questions. You can still access the many questions below.

For Sheila Scott OBE as the former CEO of National Care Association (NCA), care is Sheila's life. She possesses a strong command of the issues facing the care sector informed by her long career as a nursing professional, the owner and manager of a care business, and as a leader in the care sector.

Please do get in touch with our team of specialists if you can’t see an answer to the question you may have and we will be happy to help.

Here at QCS we have an extensive panel of specialists with a wide range of knowledge and experience so don’t worry if you have a social care question you are struggling to find the answer to, our team are here to help.

    Join over 130,000 users already using the QCS Management System!
    Start Free Trial Buy Now
    Back to Top