You have been invited to a specific slot time to have your annual diabetic foot check, blood pressure check and for a urine sample to be obtained. We have worked very hard to make sure that we offer you these very important checks in a safe way for both you and our staff as we know that some of you will have been shielding from the outside world and may be worried about coming to see us.
To make it as safe as we can, we are going to do these checks outside for you under our newly purchased gazebos. We will have our full team of nurses ready for you to make it as quick as possible. We have marked out the path up to the gazebo at 2 metre intervals so if there is a small queue, you can wait safely and we will have face coverings available for you to use if you do not have your own. You might not want to come out, or you might think we will do this again later in the year, but because we shall shortly start planning for how to offer flu immunisation and as we have over 700 diabetic patients to support this will be the only opportunity open to you for now. We hope you know how important it is to keep control of your diabetes and although we can do some of the check over the telephone, there are some things like blood pressure and foot health where we really have to see you. So please do come and see us, we promise to keep the service as quick as possible for you.
You can collect a white top urine pot from the trolley in our porch at any time and it would be helpful if you did this and provided a sample so it is ready to bring with you to your check. Remember to write your name and date of birth on to the side of the pot. We will not be offering the use of the toilets on the day as we would need to clean them between each patient which due to the numbers invited, would not be possible. Please help us to help you. We look forward to seeing you.
For further information of the importance of a foot health check, read on, information taken from Diabetes UK
Your annual diabetes foot check
Everyone with diabetes has the right to an annual foot check.
Your foot check is part of your 15 healthcare essentials, which means you’re entitled to it and it’s free on the NHS. This is because you’re more likely to have serious foot problems and these can lead to amputations.
Diabetes leads to 169 amputations a week.
That’s 24 amputations a day and 1 amputation every hour. Going to your foot checks and knowing the signs to look out for could prevent this from happening.
In most cases, serious foot problems can be prevented. You can do this by checking your feet yourself every day, and having a foot check at least once a year that’s arranged by your GP practice. Everyone with diabetes should have an annual foot check, so make sure you get yours – even if you’ve been referred to a foot specialist or clinic. They will check your feet but also tell you your level of risk of foot problems.
What happens at your foot check
It will usually be at your GP surgery as part of your annual diabetes checks.
You’ll need to take off any dressings and footwear, including socks and tights. Your feet will be examined. Numbness or changes in sensation (also known as neuropathy) will be tested with a special piece of equipment. They’ll also check your shoes to make sure they’re not causing any problems.
You’ll also be asked lots of questions about your feet and how you manage your diabetes. Such as:
- Have you had any problems or noticed any changes like cuts, blisters, broken skin, corns?
- Have you ever had any foot problems or wounds?
- Have you had any pain or discomfort?
- How often do you check your feet?
- Do you have any cramp-like pains when walking?
- How well are you managing your diabetes?
To help you get the best out of your foot check, we’ve made a short guide on your annual foot check (PDF, 41KB) that explains what you should expect and give you a space to record results.
Know your risk of a foot problem
Your healthcare team will tell you your results and how much you’re at risk of a foot problem. These include:
- Low – no risk, or a callus without any other problem.
- Moderate – one sign of a foot problem, such as a loss of sensation or a change in foot shape.
- High – more than one sign of a foot problem, or a previous ulcer or amputation.
You might also hear your healthcare professional say your level of foot problem is active. This means you have highly serious foot complications, such as a spreading infection or ulcer and you should be having treatment for it already.
You’ll get information that explains what your level of risk means, and be told what you need to do next. If your feet are moderate or high, you’ll be referred to the foot protection team where you’ll see a foot specialist.