Chiropodist visiting care home

My 91 year old aunt’s care home has been in lockdown for weeks yet now a chiropodist is having to visit because carers won’t cut my aunt’s toenails. She doesn’t have diabetes or peripheral vascular disease- she just can’t see to do it. I wonder why someone is having to be brought in to do this. It seems an unnecessary risk to me.

I am in the same position Jessie. When my Mum first went into care I arranged for her to be seen by what the home called “a chiropodist”. She cut Mum’s nails and was in there less than 10 minutes and charged her £25. I then discovered she is not in fact a chiropodist but what is called a Foothealth Professional which is completely different. A chiropodist or podiatrist trains at degree level for about 5 years and is very knowledgeable. Some of them can give injections and carry out extensive work on the feet and leg and they are trained in anatomy.

FHPs can literally train in a couple of weekends (some even by distance learning) and they are not allowed to call themselves chiropodists as that is a “protected title”. all they can really do is cut toenails and file hard skin. It is very unfair of them to be charging anything like that amount which is what a qualified chiropodist might charge.

Mum is like your aunt and doesn’t have diabetes or any other problems so after the other woman came twice I now do Mum’s feet myself. I file her feet first, then I soak them, cut the toenails and massage cream in to them. She loves it!

Care homes and indeed hospitals are not allowed to cut toenails. my Mum spent 9 weeks in hospital and I asked in there and they confirmed they were not allowed to. Seems mad doesn’t it?

I last cut Mum’s toenails late February and mentioned this to her home and they said they have just arranged for a FHP to go in on Saturday and do about 10 people’s toenails. She will apparently wear full PPE and will see them in a separate room and each person will be taken to see her by a carer. She is charging £22 per person and I think even that is a lot when she doesn’t even soak them. £220 for a fee hours work is BIG money. She only lives a few streets away so has no travelling costs.

Similar situation.

My caree is diabetic, and has notoriously terrible nails. I’ve been told to not touch their feet beyond applying moisturiser in case of damaging the nail in any way. The local NHS chiropodist service will only come out once every 6-8 weeks…but if you’re not on them constantly they don’t bother to show up.

I called in Feb, over four weeks before lockdown occurred to request a home visit for my caree, was told someone would be in touch and it never happened. Call two weeks before lockdown, was told the same thing. Called just after lockdown was initiated and was told again someone would be in touch. Called a week into it and was told to basically get stuffed and that I should have called sooner haha!

They advised “filing” the nails down until they can be cut or paying for a private chiropodist at £45 a pop! Criminal to expect ill people surviving on benefits to be able to afford that kind of money. Worse still to be told not to touch feet due to the risks and then be left with no other choice but to get in there with a nail file and hope you don’t do any damage!

There is just something wrong with the present system Penny. Good to hear the FHP will be wearing full PPE though.
I wonder what the NHS chiropodists will do AJ. They can’t leave people forever.