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Freestanding podiatric surgical units

Discussion in 'General Issues and Discussion Forum' started by jack golding, Mar 17, 2007.

  1. jack golding

    jack golding Active Member

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    Over the years podiatric surgeons have had difficulties in accessing operating theatres in private hospitals. In recent times orthopaedics, who often chair medical advisory committees, have become more hardline when faced with podiatric surgeons applying for privileges and, in some cases, podiatrists have been ousted with little or no ceremony. My partner and I have, for a number of years. run a standalone unit providing theatre facilities for both ourselves and other podiatrists. In the early days of podiatric surgery this was the only way in which we could operate. However, with some people being granted privileges in private hospitals there was a sense in which podiatry units were frowned on. Our unit has, for the past two years, been in the process of upgrading towards a Care Standards Commission inspection. My question is 'does the profession believe that we are likely to become more acceptable in private hospitals and, if not, does the small standalone unit run by podiatrists for podiatrists have a future?'
  2. nigelroberts

    nigelroberts Active Member

    You ask an interesting question that could raise analagies with independent sector procurements the government seem to be keen on at the moment.
    My point is that whatever the orthopaedic community, independant hospitals or anyone else for that matter think, if you can offer a service specification that the Healthcare Commision find satisfactory you must be on to a winner. One large unit in Manchester dealing with all kinds of joint replacement surgery appears to operate on patients who fall into the ASA 1, anything more difficult and they bail out.

    Hope this fuels a few responses


  3. W J Liggins

    W J Liggins Well-Known Member

    Hello Jack

    In legal terms, I am sure that Nigel is absolutely correct.

    I does seem that until very recently the vast majority of private medicine was carried out in private hospitals in the U.K. However, this is certaily not true of other parts of Europe, and indeed the U.S.A. For example, Dr Deiter Werner of Moje implant fame, uses a small, well equipped, free standing unit. A group of opthalmic surgeons in my area have banded together and created the 'Midlands Eye Institute' and some podiatric surgery services, my own included, do, or intend to, use free standing units of the PFI variety.

    Whether private surgery units have a future, I am not buisnessman enough to guess. However, I do predict that orthopaedic surgeons are never going to love podiatric surgeons in any country, and since you have been willing to pay the not inconsiderable costs to create a unit of the appropriate standard, the best of luck!

    This thread does lead to a further thought. If people practice bone surgery in units which are not up to standard, will it be the HPC or the Care Standards Commission who will police the situation?

    All the best


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