Lindsey Ebbs Podiatry - Podiatry Insights

What is Practice Accreditation and why did we want to achieve it?

The Podiatry profession in the UK is subject to careful monitoring and regulation. These systems are in place to protect the public from sub-standard levels of care, and to ensure that practitioners always know to which standards they should be working to.

Qualification and registration with authorities like the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) are important regulatory steps, but beyond that there are further steps that can be taken to ensure the very highest level of care provision. These include, for example, the process of practice accreditation, which is often utilised by both private and NHS podiatric practices.

Why get a practice accredited?

Other healthcare professions apart from Podiatry also seek out practice accreditation and so do many insurance companies as it is a sign of “Best Practice”

When a patient is looking for a private practice one of their major concerns will be whether or not they will be getting a sufficiently high level of care? Practice accreditation can offer the guarantee that a practice has been reviewed by an appropriate regulatory authority, The College of Podiatry, to ensure that its services meet certain criteria. Ultimately what accreditation offers is peace of mind for patients.

The process of accreditation

To become accredited a practice needs to abide by particular standards outlined by the College of Podiatry (COP) and these encompass everything from the qualifications podiatrists possess to health and safety guidelines and practice policies.

Accreditation is completely voluntary, unlike registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). It is important not to confuse the two as the latter is absolutely compulsory if a podiatrist wants to practice legally in the UK. Membership and accreditation from the COP is voluntary.

Important guidelines offered by the COP that need to be adhered to for successful accreditation include standards of:

  • Infection control: Podiatrists are in regular contact with people’s feet, many of which can suffer from contagious infections. Safe and appropriate management of these feet and the surfaces which they come into contact with is an important health and safety consideration, alongside the decontamination and sterilisation of the instruments we use in clinic
  • Clinical environment: Providing a safe, comforting, and effective clinical atmosphere is one of the most important parts of a successful healthcare practice. The COP only accredits practices that offer environments in keeping with their guidelines.
  • Health and safety: General health and safety rules must be abided by for a practice to be considered safe and worthy of accreditation. This includes the aforementioned infection control and other, broader considerations like fire safety.

We recognise at Lindsey Ebbs Podiatry that choosing the right Podiatrist for you is difficult and to also to recognise the difference between Foot-health Practitioners, Assistant Podiatrists and Podiatrists?

It’s very simple with Practice Accreditation, it is only awarded to Podiatry Clinics that reach that high level of care that the College of Podiatry insist on. Giving you the assurance that you are in the right place.

If you would like more information about practice accreditation then please contact us on 01947 820319 or email us at info@footcheck.co.uk.


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