FAQ: Why is foot care important? | QCS

FAQ: Why is foot care important?

Dementia Care
December 6, 2022

Untreated foot problems can lead to significant mobility and wellbeing issues, especially in those with Diabetes. Care Home Podiatry answers frequently asked questions so you can care for your residents’ feet properly.


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Foot care is so much more than just cutting toenails! Untreated foot problems can lead to significant issues with people’s mobility and wellbeing.

Some foot problems are linked to an increased risk of falls.

In people with Diabetes poor foot care can lead to foot ulcerations, the need for amputations or even premature death.

How do I care for my residents’ feet?

Having robust policy and procedures around residents’ foot care is essential to set out the roles and responsibilities among your team and external providers.

Creating a foot care plan for each of your residents is a great way to ensure that their foot care needs are being met – covering everything from daily hygiene, routine nail care and what to do when something goes wrong.

What is the difference between a Chiropodist and a Podiatrist?

Chiropodist and Podiatrist are the same profession, Chiropody is simply the old name for the profession which is being phased out. Both of these titles are protected by law, anyone using these titles must be registered with The Health and Care Professions Council.

How can I tell if someone is a qualified Podiatrist and what should I look for when choosing one for residents?

The easiest way to check if someone is a qualified Podiatrist is to use their surname to search the Health and Care Professions Council register.

When choosing a Podiatrist always ask for a copy of their DBS check and insurance. We would encourage you to ask for references – particularly from other care homes they have worked in – just as you would when recruiting a member of your care team.

Is Podiatry for the people we support expensive, are they entitled to any reductions or benefits?

Private Podiatry fees vary across the country. Generally, care home residents are provided with a discounted rate when compared to accessing private foot care as an individual at a clinic (associated with the number of residents seen in one visit – a bit like a bulk buy discount).

Some care home residents may qualify for routine foot care with your local NHS trust. However, there are significant geographical variations in what is available and the criteria by which residents can apply for care. Contact your local NHS trust for more information.

Am I allowed to cut a resident’s nails on their feet?

There is no law or regulation preventing care home staff cutting residents’ toenails, even those with Diabetes. Guidance suggests a risk assessment for each resident is carried out before completing foot care and the individual providing care should have been assessed for competency.

Whether you should cut your residents toenails is a completely different debate, and serious consideration needs to be made of the safety and quality of providing foot care “in-house”.

How often should people in care homes see a Podiatrist?

Each resident should be assessed on an individual basis to decide on the frequency of foot care to best meet their needs.

Typically, foot care visits by private Podiatrists are organised at a 6-8 week interval and NHS care is provided at 12-14 week intervals.

There is specific guidance for people with Diabetes based on their individual foot risk provided by The National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE NG-19).

What training can care home staff do to improve our knowledge of foot care?

Some NHS Podiatry teams will provide free of charge training for care home staff, contact your local NHS trust for more details.

Alternatively, private companies like Care Home Podiatry Ltd have paid for courses available.

Online resources around foot care and common foot problems are available from The Royal College of Podiatrists.

Care Home Podiatry

We’re on a mission to drive up the standard of foot care in care homes.

Care Home Podiatry Ltd supply highly skilled, experienced Podiatrists to care homes in the UK.

Find out more at:

or email:
[email protected]


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