Footcare network shares good practice
A network with a target of reducing unnecessary major amputations in people with diabetes by 50 per cent over the next five years met to share good practice.
More than 100 health professionals from across the north east and Cumbria involved in the care of people with foot problems connected diabetes attended the Northern Diabetes Footcare Network’s first Clinical Symposium held at the Durham Centre.
Podiatrists, diabetes specialists, vascular surgeons, GPs, practice nurses and microbiologists gathered to share the latest evidence and developments in this area of medicine from specialists in the field of diabetes care, podiatry, vascular surgery and microbiology.
Consultant diabetologist Rahul Nayar, from City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust, who chairs the Northern Diabetes Footcare Network, said: “We are fortunate to have a diabetes foot care network in our region; in fact we are the only network of this type in the country.
“Sharing good practice through the network has improved outcomes for patients. However, we can always do better to ensure our patients are getting the very best care we can offer and that is what the day was all about.
Sharing good practice through the network has improved outcomes for patients
“The feedback I’ve received so far is very positive and it looks like this day will be the first of many. I’m delighted about that because it’s excellent that health professionals from all over the region are prepared to work together in this way to benefit patients.”
Delegates attended interactive workshop sessions, looked at case studies and discussed the best care and treatments.
South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust consultant diabetologist Simon Ashwell talked about reducing the risk of circulatory disease and said every professional in the room could use the three As as set down by the National Centre for Smoking Cessation and Training –ask, assess and advise.
Keynote speaker Martin Fox from Manchester’s Pennine Acute Hospitals Trust,who is one of the few vascular specialist podiatrists in the countr talked about the need to address the root cause of foot ulcers, saying patients were more likely to die of a heart attack or stroke than have to have the affected leg amputated.
He argued for the need for more vascular specialist podiatrists to assess patients in the community and ensure that only patients who needed to be were referred to vascular surgeons. Delegates certainly left the event with food for thought.
For more information, email the network’s co-ordinator Kate Mackay.