What are we doing during Covid-19 to keep you safe?
As a result of COVID-19 the NHS system will be under significant strain. Podiatrists are key to the successful management of foot & lower limb problems that will help avoid unnecessary visits to acute hospitals and in some cases admissions.
Supporting the management of high-risk foot patients, to help avoid complications such as ulceration and specifically infection is essential.
With this in mind we have been issued the following advice:
1. If you show any of the signs of COVID-19 infection you must self-isolate for 7 days, if any of your household show symptoms you must self-isolate for 14 days.
2. Podiatrists in private practice, who are vulnerable themselves as outlined by the Government should follow this advice and strongly consider self-isolation.
3. All routine and non-urgent treatments and assessments should be delayed until further notice for patients with low-risk feet or they can be offered a remote consultation as per COP guidance. See NHS England/Improvement guidance on prioritisation within Community Health Services
4. Patients with high-risk feet or urgent need can still be treated especially if they are at risk of breakdown or infection. This would also include those that are in a vulnerable category or are over 70. Please undertake a risk assessment on each patient.
5. When treating patients, you should be following the College of Podiatry Infection Control Standards as a minimum.( Please ask us for a copy if you would like to see it)
6. If a patient requires urgent Podiatry treatment but has or is suspected of having COVID-19 you must not treat them in Private Practice and you should advise them to call 111.
7. Ideally limiting distance (2 metres minimum from their face) and length of time spent with patients limits the spread of the disease - noting when visiting someone’s house there may be others present and they should be advised not to be near you when you are treating the patient i.e. asking them to be in another room if possible.
8. If any private patient with a high-risk foot presents with an infection, we will engage with our local NHS podiatry service immediately if possible, or their GP.
9. Between contacts, all surfaces and door handles should be cleaned with antibacterial and viricidal spray.
10. Waiting room chairs should be spaced apart and it is recommended appointments with different clinicians are staggered so multiple patients are not congregating in the waiting room if possible.
11. Prior to the day beginning all patients booked in will be screened as to their health, presenting complaint and risk to assess if their appointment is required.
12. When doing home visits we will ask other members of the family to be in another room if possible and keep appointments to as short as possible.