People with diabetes in Barnsley are 32% less likely to require a major amputation than patients anywhere else in the country, thanks to improvements made by specialist teams.
A review highlighted that over the last three years, podiatry (foot health) care in Barnsley provided by South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and Barnsley Hospital, had successfully reduced the length of time a patient needed to stay in hospital due to diabetic foot conditions and also reduced the number of major amputations required.
Diabetes can commonly cause people to experience a lack of sensation in their feet which can lead to the development of wounds on the foot; often complicated by infection and poor circulation.
Barnsley’s community podiatry team specialise in the management of these conditions and provide assessment and treatment in partnership with the hospital, for patients with diabetic foot ulcerations and other acute conditions.
Sarah-May Poppleton, one of the Trust’s diabetes lead podiatrists said, "We are really pleased that the review has picked up on these examples of good practice, which are a result of the team’s commitment to working with colleagues across organisations to ensure we can provide the highest quality of care to local people.
"Our diabetic foot clinic, based at the hospital, with Dr E Uchegbu, consultant in diabetes, works very closely with the rapid response service. This means patients can be discharged from hospital quickly and we can ensure that their medication and ability to manage their condition is suitable for their individual needs, which we continue to monitor, throughout their journey to recover."
Another contributing factor to the lower rates of major amputations in Barnsley is the early intervention approach and the use of appropriate management of conditions in line with current research and guidelines.
Natalie Bennett, community diabetes lead podiatrist added, "For housebound patients we can assess and manage their care within the community, liaising with GPs and district nurses to prevent unnecessary hospital stays."