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What defines a podiatrist ?

Discussion in 'General Issues and Discussion Forum' started by mike weber, Jul 26, 2010.

  1. Members do not see these Ads. Sign Up.
    In this thread I said that I hope that in the future Podiatry will spread to more countries and be welcomed.

    This issue has become very important to me since moving the Sweden, from Australia. I had no real idea of Podiatry outside of Australia, the US and the UK and alot of that was wrong as well.

    What defines a podiatrist to you ? Today

    I´ve discussed a Definition of Podiatry with one of the ex heads of FIP. But I´m notsure the document will ever see the light of day due to different country issues.

    What would you like to say defines a Podiatrist in say 5 years ?

    If we say that Podiatry is broken up into 2 main sections of education.

    1 Podiatrist

    2 Surgical Podiatrist

    How would you define each and what would you like to see as advancements in that definition in the future ?

    Below is taken from answers.com about Podiatry

    Do we need to define a podiatrist ?

    Also we are quite international on the arena what Countries is the Podiatrist or the like used ( what is that word ) and what level of training is required to use that title ?

    Is the title protected ?

    As far as I know and I could be wrong Podiatry can be found in the following places.

    New Zealand
    South Africa
    The United States
    Hong Kong

    I hope Ive not missed anyone. I think at the moment there is 195 Countries in the world at the moment and at my count 16 with Podiatry, have I missed any ? Sorry if I have.

    1 last question- how many of countries have podiatry schools ?

    Lots of questions which I hope will get many responses, so we can become more aware of Podiatry around the world.
  2. guinevere_fds

    guinevere_fds Welcome New Poster

    Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and the UAE are not on your list but have registered, practicing professionals.
  3. Thanks for that, Do they have Podiatry schools ?

    if yes can you give some details of the study program and what the scope of practice is in the countries you have listed. If not what countries are recognised as being of standard to workand be rgistered in said countries.
  4. guinevere_fds

    guinevere_fds Welcome New Poster

    No, I don't believe they do. When I interned in Bahrain (in 2005), I worked with a podiatrist who had been practicing in the region for about 25 years. She trained here in the UK and was then offered a job in Saudi Arabia. In Bahrain, there is the Harvard-Affiliated Joslin Diabetes Center where podiatry was and perhaps, still is practised.

    The Middle East has an ever increasing podiatric profile due to the high incidence rate and prevalence of diabetes, and diabetic-related foot pathologies.
    It is still very much a developing profession in a developing part of the world due to cultural implications of showing your feet and legs, lack of patient self-education and knowledge of what to look for, i.e. corns/calluses/area susceptible to high pressure and irregular appointments with health care practitioners.
  5. W J Liggins

    W J Liggins Well-Known Member

    Hi Michael

    Call me a Pommie Bastard and I'm happy, call me bone idle, call me a drunken sot, call me whatever you like, I don't mind, but please please, please, never call me a 'surgical podiatrist'. This is a term used by a) a specific organisation here in the U.K. and b) by orthopaedic surgeons. I had an interesting meeting last week with someone fairly high up in the Uk. Dept. of Health who breezily declared "of course, it's illegal to call yourself Podiatric Surgeon". I was able to assure her that my professional title is indeed Podiatric Surgeon, my job title in the NHS was Consultant Podiatric Surgeon and that she was being lied to! (As an Aussie you will appreciate my candour, the UK. civil service don't like truthful terms and would have preferred a more diplomatic statement - tough!). So please don't encourage the lying gits!

    All the best


    PS. Now Ferrari are cheating - again.
  6. Sorry Bill was not trying to cause any negative discussions, infact only positive ( except for any english sporting teams of course ;)).

    Was looking for a simple was to separate the level of training, those that practice invassive foot surg and those that don´t. Sorry, again no offence intended. Thanks for putting it straight.

    Maybe question that you or George or Bob or any other Podiatric Surgeons can answer. It what other countries are your surgeon skill regonized. Bob has said there is no go with the US and vice versa to the UK, but can you practice your skills anywhere else ?

    The reason for this thread is that if we as a profession can come together with a somewhat united voice we maybe able to help spread the profession to countries where is does not excist, which I beleive is a very good thing.

    To create this united voice we should know more about Podiatry and how it fits in various countries around the world.
  7. W J Liggins

    W J Liggins Well-Known Member

    Hi Michael

    I must confess that I don't know the answer to your question. I suppose that in theory any EU country should recognise the training in any other EU country but I suspect that like most other issues in the EU it would take a mountain of paper, the lifetimes of three bureaucrats and the gainful employment of a further thirty-seven to sort out. Podiatric surgery as we know it is certainly carried out in Spain, Aus and I think NZ? Limited surgery is carried out in SA, so it seems to be following rugby. Our next door neighbours in the Republic of Ireland have opened their new school; there is currently no reciprocal recognition but I would think that it is only a matter of time.

    I'm no politico, but would have hopes of some form of reciprocal recognition between the UK, RoI and the Anzacs before anywhere else.

    All the best

  8. anDRe

    anDRe Active Member

    You have left out Portugal!

    In Portugal it is studied since October 1994 but only became official in 1997 the Superior Course of Podiatry, assigning a Bachelor's degree by successful completion of all units that integrate the curriculum relating to three years of higher education . But Podiatry did not stop there: the February 16, 2001 was recognized as a degree by successful completion of all units that integrate the curriculum on four years of higher education.
    This way, Portugal whas to my knowledge the first country in Europe to achieve this level of education in podiatry.
    The podiatry course prepares future professionals for their business with professional autonomy in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the lower limb, including the foot and its repercussions in the Human Body .
    A degree in Podiatry is taught by CESPU - Cooperative Higher Polytechnic and University, its Schools of Health, located in Gandra-Paredes and in Vila Nova de Famalicão.
    Students of Podiatry during their higher education, have an educational pioneer and unique in Portugal. His academic training during the first two years is a universal value in the area of health sciences, while integrating practical laboratory and preclinical. During the past two years have expertise in different aspects of podiatry clinics at the theoretical and practical level directly with the patient. The academic training of Podiatry has a faculty of the institution spatialized (CESPU) together with a group of professors from the University of Barcelona. The internship allows students to podiatry in direct contact with the patient in different areas, from specialty clinics within the institution itself for clinics, allowing future professionals evaluate the patient, develop a diagnosis and implement treatment plans with appropriate professional autonomy .

    But unfortunately we live in a ridiculous situation because although we have the course recognized by the Ministry of Education whe do not officially exist as a profession because whe do not have the profession legislated!
  9. Sorry Andre so now we can add Portugal to the list.

    Portugal *
    Australia *
    New Zealand *
    South Africa *
    Belgium *
    England *
    Ireland *
    Scotland *
    The United States *
    Spain *
    Singapore *
    Saudi Arabia
    the UAE
    Hong Kong

    the countries with a * to my knowledge have Podiatry schools.

    Anymore ?
  10. Admin2

    Admin2 Administrator Staff Member

  11. Thanks admin 2 for the link, we have now pretty much the same list.

    Now we have a list what defines a podiatrist, FIP seems to want to include anyone who works on feet with some level of training, as little as 6 months, Where if you asked most Pods from say Aust. , N.Z, The U.K etc they might say a 3-4 year university standard degree with 1000 hours of Practicial.

    But then if you ask Pods from the U.S and maybe Spain you would get a very different answer. I understand that in Belgium there are 2 main schools with very different approachs to teaching and what ´defines a Podiatrist´.

    So with trying to see this is a positive light, " what defines a Podiatrist"
  12. Sammo

    Sammo Active Member

    Hi Michael,

    Unfortunately we don't have a podiatry school in Singapore as yet..


  13. LuckyLisfranc

    LuckyLisfranc Well-Known Member

    Whatever you want, of course.

    When in my first year of study, I purchased an American textbook on podiatric medicine and surgery. That is what defines a podiatrist for me. Unfortunately, working life outside of the USA for a podiatrist is a compromise on this 'ideal'.

  14. CraigT

    CraigT Well-Known Member

    Nice to see that Qatar is now in there.
    I know also that there are Bachelor Degree qualified Podiatrists in Oman- not sure of their scope of practice at this point in time.

    It is an interesting question- I know that most of the European Physicians that I work with do not see a differentiation between their previous contacts, eg- French Podologues, and Podiatrists, though of coourse the training is different.
    I note that Holland is there- is their system much different to the French system? Because then you would probabaly add France and Italy... and many other listed by the FIP.
  15. Hi Craig I was under the understanding that Holland was moving towards a More Bachlor Degree as we understand it to be, I could be wrong, But then it comes back to the question of

    " what defines a podiatrist" or maybe we should add does it really matter ?
  16. CraigT

    CraigT Well-Known Member

    I have no idea- I am just going by feedback from some of the staff here who are from all over Europe (and the world)
  17. Craig, a few personal type questions - If you don´t want to answer I understand

    How did you end up in Qatar ?

    What are the who, why whats of Podiatry in Qatar?
  18. Mr C.W.Kerans

    Mr C.W.Kerans Active Member

    Great historical review, Michael, congratulations. A very interesting area for consideration and debate, which is sure to stir up heat in the U.K. and Ireland anyway. This is just as it should be. It seems to me to be quite clear as things stand here and now - the "Gold Standard" for podiatry education and practice is the U.S. system and their DPM, and it is to this model that we in other countries should aspire in the future.
  19. W J Liggins

    W J Liggins Well-Known Member

    Hi Michael

    Forgot to mention that the Taffy's also have a school, in Cardiff.

    I stand second to no man in my admiration for our colleagues in the USA. It was Tilden Sokoloff, Dalton McGlamary, Guido LaPorta and Lowell Weil amongst others who really got Podiatric Surgery and Rootian Biomx. off the ground in the U.K. (plus, of course, the enthusiasm of the original Podiatry Association members). However, whether the educational system which works well in the USA is applicable to other countries is a moot point. I think that in the U.K. and perhaps other 'commonwealth' countries, the route taken by the maxillo-facial surgeons ie. dual qualification, might have significant advantages.

    All the best

  20. carolethecatlover

    carolethecatlover Active Member

    Where in the world is PODIATRY practiced? Try using CHIROPODY and see what comes up. This is a word that will not die, dispite the best efforts of various bodies in various countries to kill it off. I would like to see it revived for a person trained in basic footcare.
  21. hamish dow

    hamish dow Active Member

    What defines a podiatrist, or what defines podiatry? A very simple answer would be: "One is defined by ones acts in life. As an individual one has a choice of one how one chooses to define ones-self. As a professional organisation looking to define a collective identity it might be prudent to accept that chiropody is widely understood to mean the actual hands-on clinical application of non-invasive technical skills, Podiatric surgery is somewhat self explanatory.
    Podiatry perhaps should be seen as an all encompasing reference to the profession as a whole, and it is a title of an individual having attained a recognised certification of podiatric education. Not all podiatrists can or wish to practice chiropody fine, but one ought to have a competent baseline of functional clinical skill as part of ones podiatric education. However all chiropodists would still (by default) actually be, simultaneously, podiatrists.
    It could easily limit the misplaced sneeriness and self aggrandisement that our profession currently is prone to.
    On a very personal level, that which defines me is me. I find being defined as a podiatris is somewhat limiting as a human being. Podaitrist /chiropodist are merely elements of things I do to earn an income. However I recognise the need for an across the board agreement. I just think, as usual, the simplest solution is quite probably the most useful.
    The public are smart/stupid in equal doses, I am one of them after all, they can understand if it is reasonably explained to them. Some get upset if chiropodist is mispronounced, or podiatry is confused with something else, but seem astonishingly oblivious of the irritation they cause when they mispronounce a patients name, address or get words completely wrong and confuse any number of things in front of a patient. News flash... it is the same thing.

    This is an issue which will go on for a while in the UK, possibly because a large number of people are not comfortable in their own skin and have a need for a hierarchical arrangement to feel some sense of identity. After all "one has to be better than someone" or so it was said in some movie somewhere.
    I know I sound flippant, but I mean it earnestly.
    Let me suggest this, during the course of a day what activities does one actually perform? Me I breathe quite a lot, I blink and swallow a fair bit, I walk about some and drink and eat. I also have to perform a range of less polite bodily functions. The blinking, swallowing walking, talking and swallowing thing does not have me defining myself as a walker in a finite way nor am I a "breathist" nor an eater to the exclusion of all the other things I do. So back-paddle on the ego, embrace the professional past without seeing a need to expunge it; include it as a skill set and don't hand it off to some other group. I am sure this will no doubt be an affront to someone out there, So big deal. I am equally sure that a number of folks can see there is a thread of common sense in it.

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