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Becoming a Podiatrist - Can you help?

Discussion in 'United Kingdom' started by giggity, Jun 5, 2009.

  1. giggity

    giggity Welcome New Poster

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    I am really interested in this profession, and have been doing some research on what it takes to train etc. My interest was sparked at an early age when my Gran used to have a "Chiropodist" (as they used to be known) come to her house and attend to her feet. I always thought it was quite cool and looking back I think I should have followed that and trained earlier, but life took a different turn.

    I'm now seriously thinking about going to uni and getting qualified. I do have some questions though (it seems that there isn't a lot of good information on the internet about Podiatry, especially since it is a very important field). So I have become a member in the hopes that some kind folk will assist me in my quest for knowledge. :D

    To the practicing Pods - Would you recommend Podiatry as a good field to get into and work in? Is it a growing field?

    Are there more opportunities in Private practice? (I checked the NHS website and there doesn't seem to be very many jobs compared to other healthcare professions).

    Is there any reading that you would consider essential before committing to the course?

    What is the hourly rate for someone who is self employed? I have seen conflicting information and am not sure what is real, so would love some actual numbers.

    Would you say you have to be exceptionally strong academically (Like for medicine) and have all A's at A-level?

    Any time that you can spare to help me out would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you.
  2. Dido

    Dido Active Member

    Hello giggity,
    You will find some information here:-


    hope that helps
  3. davidh

    davidh Podiatry Arena Veteran


    In the order of your questions....

    Not a growing field in the UK, but worthwhile, I believe.

    PP is the way to go, but you'll need some practical experience so a job in the NHS (if you can find one) is a good idea initially.

    This forum is a great source of info. You could also go to the website DIDO recommends, but bear in mind that this is only one professional body (out of three who represent Pods in the UK). They each have their own agendas;).

    Say £60? It changes depending on what part of the UK you are practicing in. Sounds ok, but remember that equipment is expensive.

    You do not have to be strong academically. Entry requirements are nowhere near as strict as medicine.

    Hope this is useful.

  4. David Smith

    David Smith Well-Known Member


    Glen Quagmire wrote
    Dave H wrote
    Or what planet your on :dizzy: At least what part of the planet, This little island isn't the USA. I reckon that most established UK Pods in private practice earn, I.E. profit, around £30,000/annum. Equipiment is expensive but only a capital expenditure, (unless you lease or something) CPD, rent, rates consumables and wages are overheads that bite into your profit margin.

    If your going for the cash then forget it, Physio's computer engineers, plumbers, Porn stars, electricians, tunnel workers and of course M.P.'s earn much more (plus expenses).:rolleyes: (This list is representative not exhaustive :wacko:)

    I enjoy what I do; it can be a great occupation and has given me great fulfilment but I wouldn't recommend it to anyone who is young and with more opportunities.

    If you love the work (like me) it has many non cash based reward and you'll be ok, but if not, you will soon want to move on.

    Have you thought about a career in the sex industry it might suit you better :D Giggity Giggity Gooo!!


    LoL Dave
  5. DAVOhorn

    DAVOhorn Well-Known Member

    Dear Giggity,

    I would recommend you train at one of the Universities and get the Degree.

    This leads to HPC reg and enables you to work in NHS and Private Practice and in several overseas countries. Also can lead to a job in Education as well.

    You can also continue your education and get a:

    MSc, PhD even progress and go into Podiatric Surgery.

    You can specilaise in many areas in the NHS such as Diabetes, Musculo Skeletal, Neurology, Rehabilitation, Sports Medicine need i go on.

    I suggest you contact your Local NHS Podiatry Clinic / Department and ask to have a look at the services offered. Also visit a couple of Private Practices.

    I worked in the NHS in UK for 20 years and ended up running the PCT's At Risk Foot Clinic and was responsible for the Nail Surgery Services in my Local Hospital. I also was the Staff Side Rep for 2 years for my employer.

    I am now living and working here in Sydney in Private Practice and have been in Aus 2 1/2 years. I am in the final stages of my permanent residency application so i hope to stay here in Aus.:drinks

    You can work in :
    New Zealand
    South Africa
    Parts of Canada
    Parts of the West Indies
    Other parts of Europe are coming.

    Earnings in NHS are on a progressive scale based upon experience and speciality, the info can be found on NHS websites such as NHS Jobs.

    Private Practice fees are determined by services offered and your skills and premises. NEVER EVER UNDERCHARGE compared to your competition especially the Non HPC Registered Sector eg Foot Health Practioners.

    Do not even consider doing a Non University course as you will be severely limited in scope of practice and will not have a qualification that would enable you to work within the NHS.:butcher:

    Here in Sydney i recently attended the Pod Conference and there was a superb presentation by Dr. Josh Burns on the treatment of kids with Charcot Marie Tooth disease which is a Genetic abnormality which leads to significant disability in children. Josh is one of the leading Podiatrists in this field. His research is mind blowing and the outcomes he achieves for his patients are humbling.

    So i would say for any Pod today you must consider that the BSc is the first rung on the ladder to practice and that the MSc and PhD is going to be the future for the profession in the NHS.

    Also Podiatric Surgery will expand as we can do this well and release the OrthoPaedic Surgeons to do Hips and Knees etc etc.

    There is a revolution coming in the Allied Health Professions and Nursing Professions.

    Do you want to be part of it?

    So go and visit people go to the Universities and see what the courses have to offer.

    AS an aside it is not always warm and sunny here in Aus. I am in my flat with the heater on and having a hot cup of tea as it is pretty chilly this evening.:morning:

    I wish you well in your endeavours.

    regards David:drinks
  6. davidh

    davidh Podiatry Arena Veteran

    There may well be - its called cost-cutting, and there are posts about it and how it affects different parts of the UK on this forum every week.

    I have no disagreements about a degree, then a higher degree. That is the way forward.

    The true picture of Podiatry in the UK is perhaps somewhat less rosy than David paints IMO.
  7. carolethecatlover

    carolethecatlover Active Member

    Do it! Be Champions!
    Yes, I'm in Sydney and it is chilly, 10C....it is the middle of winter, and winter lasts about 6 weeks here.
    I got into Podiatry because I couldn't get into dental hygiene(20 years a dental nurse) and I am kicking myself. I would never have tried to get into podiatry because I thought it was above me, and was told, it was a male profession. BULL****! HORSEFEATHERS! It is harder and above dental hygiene, but no one thinks about it, and it is the best kept secret going. If you are a mature student, in UK or in Aus, you get in with less than nothing in the way of qualifications. In my class of 55, there are 35 over 30, and the oldest is 63, in fact there are only about 10 schoolleavers.
    What would I have liked to have read? Nothing much makes any sense until you start doing it. I would have worked more with a podiatrist. I did a day with a guy who did the feet of people who had had strokes, and he was glad of a hand, he would have been gladder of a strong young man! I did a couple of reflexology courses too. I had a diploma in leathergoods design and had made a few shoes too, I am so ****** off that I did not do this when I was 19 or 20!!!!!!
  8. dgroberts

    dgroberts Active Member

    The future of NHS Podiatry seems uncertain at the moment.

    The PCT's seem to be moving toward a rather fundamental reshuffle and will emerge as entirely different commercial entities. The cynic in me sees it as a grand plan by them in charge (the gov) to erode our favourable (ish) terms and conditions.

    Carrer progression seems to be much harder today also. KSF has seen to that.

    Put it this way, if my daughter said she was thinking about becoming a Pod I would try my hardest to persuade her otherwise.
  9. carolethecatlover

    carolethecatlover Active Member

    dgroberts. What would you advise your daughter to do?
  10. dgroberts

    dgroberts Active Member

    Doctor (GP)
    Racing Driver
    Car washer
    Benefit chav

    In that order :D
  11. You seem to be a nice person so I will spare you the grave hardship I am going thru as a poor podiatrist. First, "chiropodist" should have never been changed to all these other meanningless titles. I don't see any dentist calling themselves dental doctors or teeth physicians. So why are we so insecured about who we are and what we do! And yet dentist can name their own price and it will be paid unlike us who are beholding to insurance companies eg. these racist HMOs to whom I am losing more and more patients. Then there are those who will be threaten by you opening up oh 250 miles away from you and will do all they can to run you out of business including taking away the only nursing home you got on your own accord! Or fix it so that if you are not board certified in butchering up feet, you cannot get hospital privileges! I have tried to get out of the rat race of private practice by seeking sustained income in the form of full time podiatrist in the VAMC. But in a system where people like me who was borned in this nation of meanness and greed should be given the job based on that, they rather give to someone born outside the US. I have two uncles who faught in the Korean and Vietnam wars and it is downright insulting that a federal hospital like the VAMC rather give the available position to someone whose relatives never contributed to this nation's imperialism the way my uncles did! And for the record, I worked as a part-time consultant in Marion, IL and before the year even ended my contract was not renewed and instead they went behind my back and hired some failing podiatrist in that small racist town who now isn't even licensed in Ill because of drug issues! None of the veterans I treated back then ever complained about my work and therefore race was the only reason I could think of for this termination. But the fact that I worked in a VAMC once should also have been a plus in my favor.
    I do not regret being a podiatrist but I do regret having to fight my own collegues for every single scrap and ill-informed MDs although I am beginning to see why they disregard us so. If you really are interested in the science of foot medicine then just go for the gusto and become an orthopod and do so in a country where the feet and overall foot health are very well regarded. GERMANY. That wayyou will be respected for the MD degree and many Germans with foot issue will appreciate you! Good luck!
    If I can just save one...
    Dr Brooks

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