Archive for the ‘Physiotherapy’ Category

postheadericon An HSJ webinar: Achieving QIPP With Clinical Decision Support

Clinicians

Clinicians

Today’s clinicians are bursting with knowledge, whether it’s updated information from the latest journal or data they read 30 years ago in a university classroom. These clinicians have to filter through their own knowledge base and continually tailor each decision they make to provide the best possible solution for every unique patient.

It can be hard for even the most senior doctors to stay on top of their specialism. For juniors it can be more than a little daunting – especially when senior staff are thin on the ground. In this information-rich environment, it is important to be able to offer those clinicians the support they need to provide appropriate and safe care.

The Health Service Journal is hosting an exclusive webinar* which will offer important insights so as to enable you to better support your doctors in making those critical clinical decisions and offering the best care.

This free HSJ webinar will look at the role clinical support software can play in hospitals. It is sponsored by UpToDate, the only clinical decision support system associated with improved outcomes. There is a growing body of evidence that clinical decision support can save clinicians time, reduce unnecessary tests, shorten lengths of stay, speed up diagnosis and treatment and prevent harm to patients. All of these benefits translate to efficiencies and cost savings form trusts.

In an environment where managers are fighting hard to deliver their QIPP goals, achieving the best care at a lower cost is a real ‘sweet spot.’

What you will hear about:

This webinar will explore the role that clinical decision support can play in helping doctors ‘on the ground,’ the evidence case for using this software in clinical practice, how it can contribute to better care and reduced length of stay and how you can build a business case for investment.

It will also take a closer look at how doctors across 12 Trusts in the north west of England have seen positive outcomes from using clinical decision support software. The research was only recently published in the Health Information and Libraries Journal, thus offering fresh and unique insight.

Webinar speakers will include:

  • Dr Rhidian Bramley, Chief Clinical Information Officer and Director of Radiology, The Christie NHS Foundation Trust

  • John Addison, library manager at Pennine Acute Hospitals Trust

  • Dr Denise Basow, President and Editor-in-Chief of UpToDate at Wolters Kluwer Health, one of the leading software systems

  • The webinar will be chaired by HSJ editor Alastair McLellan

Who should watch:

  • Clinical and Medical Directors
  • Chief Executives
  • Finance Directors
  • Managers with responsibility for QIPP programmes

How to register:

You will need to pre-register here to be an HSJTV user in order to attend.

Once you have registered, simply click ‘attend’ on the first webinar in the list on this same page. The webinar is entitled: ‘Can clinical decision support technology help hospitals deliver their QIPP goals’

postheadericon Lying About Our Health: Whiplash Fraud

whiplash diagram

whiplash diagram

Here in Britain we have a plethora of different perks not afforded to those living in other less – or even more – fortunate countries. The ability to seek whiplash compensation in the advent of a car accident is one of these and remains a safe haven for those unfortunate enough to suffer from a car accident. However a system of fraud has emerged which threatens the very gift of being able to seek personal injury compensation from insurance companies.

Mass Fraud

Up to £10,000 can be claimed off insurance companies for whiplash injuries. Such a hefty amount of money will no doubt entice fraudsters and charlatans and this has precisely been the case.

This is how the system works. Patients pretending to be suffering from whiplash visit doctors who subsequently are fooled into diagnosing them with the condition. Claiming neck injury, and or trauma, these patients then use evidence of the diagnosis to claim large sums off insurance companies.

While many may argue that the huge charges laid out by insurance companies are justification to taking money back from them, it must be reminded that even if this were justification, it is not only the insurance companies which lose out financially due to this type of fraud. Court costs through processing and judging through the claims take money out of the taxpayer’s pocket.

Sophisticated Fraud

fraud has developed to the state that many fraudsters go as far as orchestrating their own crashes for the purpose of strengthening their claims.

Furthermore, third rate doctors can even be sought to willingly give perfectly healthy patients a diagnosis of whiplash. Paid by dodgy claims management companies and personal injury lawyers keen on having more customers to work with, these doctors are further indication of how developed whiplash compensation is.

Preventing Such Fraud

More work needs to be done in educating the British people on the severe criminal nature of whiplash compensation fraud. In addition, perhaps tougher laws need to be laid down on those guilty of such crimes.

Lastly, third rate doctors and professionals need to be targeted greater by the state.

Robert Daniels is a freelance British writer whose work covers a range of topics from law, to health problems such as whiplash !

postheadericon HPC changes name to HCPC

HCPC Logo

On Wednesday 1 August 2012 the Health Professions Council (HPC) changed their name to the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).

The decision to change the name was made by government and is being brought about by the Health and Social Care Act 2012, which will also see the HCPC taking on the regulation of social workers in England. Although not everyone registered with the HCPC works in ‘health’ or ‘care’ the new name will better describe the diverse range of professions the organisation regulates.

Although the name was chosen by government, the HCPC had the opportunity to offer suggestions. To help the HCPC with this, they commissioned independent quantitative and qualitative research to gauge perceptions of possible names, which included telephone and online interviews with around 2,500 individuals, and discussion-based focus groups of between seven and eleven members.

The HCPC were particularly keen to understand the perceptions of members of the public, who are the potential service users of the professionals they regulate. One poll showed that 81 per cent of the general public felt that ‘Health and Care Professions Council’ could best reflect the role of a regulator of many different professions; another showed that 76 per cent of the general public associated the term ‘care professional’ with ‘social worker’. In the focus groups ‘Health and Care Professions Council’ was the preferred option with both the public and the professionals the HCPC currently regulate. Both groups viewed it as the most suitable name to cover the range of professions to be regulated. This was a unanimous outcome.

The HCPC have previously used the strapline ‘Protecting the public; Regulating health professionals’ on a number of their communication materials. This will no longer be appropriate and instead they will use ‘Regulating health, psychological and social work professionals’. In developing this strapline they considered both the diversity of professions that they currently regulate (including practitioner psychologists who joined the Register in 2009) and the groups that the HCPC may regulate in the future (including public health professionals and healthcare support workers). It was not felt to be appropriate to name any one profession in the HCPC’s strapline; instead they have referred to some of the broad categories in which the professionals that they regulate work.

The HCPC will use this new strapline on all the materials which currently bear their strapline, including their website and social media platforms, public information posters and leaflets and on the banners and display materials which they take to professional and public-facing conferences, exhibitions and events. The HCPC will use the strapline on their most public and prominent materials, with particular emphasis on materials which will be accessed by members of the public, to reinforce who they are and what they do.

The HCPC will be the same organisation and will continue to undertake the same functions. Current registration certificates and cards will remain valid and the HCPC standards will be unchanged.

The new HCPC web address will be http://www.hcpc-uk.org and their email addresses will end in ‘@hcpc-uk.org’.

The change to the organisation’s name – and taking on the regulation of social workers in England – is not being funded from registration fees. This means that registrants are not paying for the necessary amendments to their materials due to the change of name or the work to allow social workers in England to join the Register. The HCPC has received a grant from the Department of Health to cover the cost of this work.

Article by Simon Lucas

postheadericon Chiropody and Podiatry for Children

Childhood bone development, feet X-ray

Childhood bone development, feet X-ray

Children’s feet are delicate as they are still growing and will need ample space and support to develop healthily. Rebecca Parker, (a home visit chiropodist in Kidderminster) explains that check-ups by a podiatrist or chiropodist are essential to promote healthy foot development.

Rebecca is also a home visit chiropodist in Malvern and she carries out podiatry home visits  for all ages in Worcestershire.

Here are a few of Rebecca’s tips on ensuring your child or children maintain healthy happy feet:

  • Regular check ups with a qualified podiatrist/chiropodist.
  • Arrange regular checks with a reputable shoe shop to ensure that your child’s footwear is well fitted. Your child’s feet should be measured for length and width.
  • Do not be guided by the choice of your child alone, they will so often opt for something they like the appearance of, but keep in mind that this may not be best for their feet. Be guided by the dimensions of your childrens feet when assessing the right type of shoe. This is essential in early years children. Remember that when a child’s foot is young, it will not yet be fully formed and as such incorrect pressure by footwear could cause future foot problems.
  • Ensure that your child has the right size socks.
  • Ensure your child’s feet are washed daily in soap and water and dried well, especially in between the toes as this area is at risk of athletes foot, a fungal skin infection commonly occurring inbetween the toes and sometimes on the sole of the feet.
  • Inspect your child’s feet for any red pressure marks on the back of the heel or on the small bones of the toes, additionally any inflamed nails, both these may be an indicator of a poorly fitted shoe.
  • It is very important to check your child shoe for any unsual wear. Unusual wear may be a first indicator that that there is a problem with your child’s foot or general posture and if so seeking advice from a qualified health professional is essential.
  • Normal wear on a shoe is across the back of the heel or outside the heel. Unsual wear is severe wear on the inside or outside of the heel, this wear may also carry forward to the outside of the shoe. If you suspect any unsual wear on your child’s shoe again it is important to consult a qualified health professional.

In all, you will know your child and if they are finding it uncomfortable to walk or run, this may be an opportunity to have a professional opinion on your children’s feet. Some abnormalities can be picked up at a very early age, and quick action and appropriate footwear can help prevent long term damage to the rest of the body. Many things can be linked to foot problems in later life such as back problems, knee problems, back, hip and posture problems als.

Article by Rebecca Parker. BSc (Hons) MChS

Ref: www.feetforlife.org  childrens- feet -1.pdf

postheadericon Nail Care and Nail Pathologies

Rebecca Parker runs a chiropodists in Worcester, England. In this article Rebecca writes about nail care and nail pathologies.

toenail diagram

toenail diagram

Nail Care

It is essential to look after toenails as we spend many hours of each day on our feet, and a painful or sore toenail can often lead to difficulty in getting around.

The nail is made up of different parts including the free edge, the nail bed, the nail plate, the eponychium, the hyponychium, the lanula, the sulcus and the matrix.

Non pathological nails are nails in good health. These nails can be filed or cut as suits the individual. These nails are often easy to manage by the patient in between seeing a podiatrist or chiropodist for treatment. It is very important to follow these guidelines in order to maintain a healthy nail. Firstly cut the nail straight across, avoiding cutting down the sides of the nail. Ensure that any sharp areas are adequately filed down.

There are various different pathologies that can effect the nail. Below is a list of just some of the most common nails podiatrists and chiropodists regularly see and treat.

  • Involuted nails
  • Onychomycotic nails
  • Onychauxic nails
  • Ingrowing toe nails

Additional conditions which affect the nail are:

  • Paronychia
  • Leukonychia
  • Koilonychia
  • Onychogryphosis

Involuted nails are nails that are positioned as such that the nail is pressing against the skin, but without breaking the skin. These nails are at risk of becoming ingrowing toe nails.

Onychomycotic nails are those nails that are thickened, and are fungally infected.  To determine whether there are any fungal spores present within the nail it is often necessary to send a sample of the nail away for microbiological tests.

Onuchauxic nails thickened nails are often caused by a fungal infection.

Ingrowing toe nails are those nails which are digging into the skin and that, as a result, cause breaking in the skin. When this occurs the toe may become infected and the patient may require a course of antibiotics. The in growing toenail may be treated conservatively or may require nail surgery as a long term management plan.

Paronychia is bacterial skin infection of the area of skin surrounding the nail. Most commonly caused by an ingrowing toe nail.

Leukonychia. These are areas of white discolouration in the nail. Often an indication of a fungal infection beginning.

Koilonychia. These are spoon shaped nails.

Onychogryphosis is a severe over growth of the nail which results in the nail having a ‘rams horn’ appearance and which needs to be significantly reduced by the podiatrist or chiropodist.

If you have a concern about a toenail then it is advisable to seek professional advice from your doctor or chiropodist. All chiropodists and podiatrists should be registered with the HPC (Health Professions Council).

Article by Rebecca Parker, Lilypad Podiatrists & Chiropodists Worcester.

References: Achilles Foot Health Centre.

postheadericon Home Visit Podiatrists

foot care

foot care

Podiatry and Chiropody is usually carried out in a health clinic but in some cases a home visit is necessary. An example of this is Lilypad Podiatry which is run by myself, Rebecca Parker, a Chiropodist in Worcester, England. I have worked along side other Chiropodists in Worcester for several years and there are some important things to know before you look for a home visit Chriopodist.

As a professional health worker, a Podiatrist or Chiropodist in the UK should be registered with the Health Professions Council, they will have a reference number which you can check online or by calling the HPC on (0)20 7840 9802.

What is a Podiatry Home Visit?

A home visit Podiatry appointment initially consists of an assessment interview. Information is acquired and details are observed and then recorded onto a personal record file: This includes the presenting foot complaint and medical history, including any medication currently being taken and the patient’s current health status.

An assessment interview is extremely important so that the correct podiatry treatment and management plan can be written up.

The next part of the appointment consists of the Podiatrist or Chiropodistperforming an observational and clinical examination. This consists of looking at the patient’s vascular and neurological status, their skin and nail health, and additionally the type of footwear being worn. In some cases a gait analysis may be performed. (Merriman and Tollafield 1996)

toe nail care

toe nail care

Management Plan

Following this assessment, the patient will be required to sign a consent form. This ensures the patient is happy to have their feet treated. The Podiatrist will be able to answer any questions or concerns throughout the appointment.

In some cases other conditions of the lower limb can be diagnosed and may need referral to another health professional, this can be arranged with the patient’s consent within a visit. The Podiatry treatment will then commence whether that be the cutting and/or the reduction of nails, the removal of callus and corns and the treatment of veruccae.. etc.

The podiatrist will then build a long term management plan to suit the individual’s needs, and will work out how often would be suitable to return for the next visit. They will provide any foot health information a patient may require.

Type of patients Podiatrists treat on a Home Visit

Podiatrists mainly see the housebound on a home visit, these are people who cannot get out and about due to being elderly or due to illness or injury.

Podiatrist’s routinely visit nursing homes, hospitals, care and day centres and residential properties, to provide podiatry treatment for those who cannot or find it difficult to travel to visit a Podiatrist in a clinical setting.

healthy feet

healthy feet

How long will a Home Visit last?

Generally, a Podiatrist’s home visit lasts around thirty minutes, this is according to the treatment which is required. A first appointment can be a little longer due to paperwork requirements and the initial assessment.

For more complicated procedures more time should be allowed, but this can be arranged to suit the patient’s needs.

Are Podiatry Home Visits more expensive?

It is sometimes slightly more expensive to have a home visit, as the Podiatrist may need to cover traveling expenses and the time taken to travel between patients.

Article by R. Parker, BSc (Hons) MChS. Lilypad Podiatry (Podiatrist in Worcester).

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