Enhancing Best Practice: AECC UC Podiatry Programme Partners with Local Specialists

Acute foot complications are the most frequent reason for admission to hospital if you have diabetes in the UK – greater than heart disease, kidney disease & stroke. Sadly, there are over 7,000 diabetes-related amputations every year in England.

In the UK, people living with diabetes are over 20 times more likely to have an amputation compared to the general population. Early identification of foot complications on admission, along with clear referral and management pathways, are critical to improving outcomes.

In 2021 University Hospital Dorset NHS Foundation Trust appointed a full-time Consultant Podiatrist for Diabetes inpatients to ensure individuals living with diabetes and foot complications have timely access to specialist podiatry.

As an in-patient Consultant Podiatrist, Jo Baynham will facilitate the care and expertise offered in outpatient diabetes foot clinics to the in-patient setting, enabling better co-ordination of care, aiming to reduce amputation rates and length of stay in line with national strategy.

With the advent of the MSc Podiatry (pre-registration) programme at AECC UC, the course team was keen to integrate course content with the local health economy.

During the first semester Jo will join our teaching team to integrate core topics around wound care, specifically being able to offer an overview of local pathways that incorporate National wound care strategy for the lower limb which students will be able to integrate directly into practice. 

This approach will offer students ‘real world’ examples and an opportunity to see how national strategies can be implemented at local level. Students are now in a better position to apply this knowledge directly during their forthcoming clinical placements.

Students commented how much they enjoyed these co-facilitated sessions, appreciated the knowledge and experience Jo brings together with an approachable manner to a complex topic.

The opportunities bring practice to life and enable our course to integrate theory and practice as well as providing a key exemplar of how the programme aligns with AECC values.

Jo as a consultant-grade Allied Health Professional offers an excellent role model for career pathways.

Above: Consultant Podiatrist, Jo Baynham, teaching AECC UC students