How to personalise foot care for your diabetes patients


1 in 5 practice nurses feel they don’t have the patient materials to support a foot consultation.

NICE guidelines1 recommend that each person with diabetes should receive a foot health assessment at least once a year, and also understand how to care for their own feet. However, a recent survey by Flexitol®2 revealed that not all practice nurses have materials which can help achieve this:

  • Around 1 in 5 of practice nurses do not feel they have adequate patient materials to support diabetic foot consultations.
  • Around 1 in 6 of practice nurses do not feel they have adequate materials to help conduct an annual foot check.
  • For half of the practice nurses surveyed, at least 50% of their patients were not resolving early symptoms of foot problems such as dry and cracked skin and/or callus.
Other studies suggest that annual foot checks are not being conducted for all people with diabetes, with significant variations between CCG areas.3 Resulting unresolved foot-health issues can increase risk of further complications.

People with diabetes are more likely to be admitted to hospital with a foot ulcer than with any other complication. NICE advises that people with diabetes should have access to adequate information and support, enabling them to monitor their foot health, be aware of their risk status, and what next steps can be taken if they are at a higher risk of complications.

Personalized patient materials may offer real value to diabetes healthcare professionals as these can be tailored to each patient depending on their risk status. In order to support access to quality information and support, Flexitol® has developed a range of materials to assist healthcare professionals in the delivery of effective, high-quality diabetic foot screening. The Flexitol® Diabetic Foot Screening Toolkit includes materials to calculate your patient’s individualized risk classification, help them recognize the signs of deterioration and provide a tear-off personalized action plan.
1. NICE NG19. Diabetic foot problems: prevention and management. (accessed July 2016).
2. Data on File, Thornton & Ross. Opinion Health, Foot Health Diabetes Study conducted among 150 practice nurses, June 2016.
3. HSCIC (2014). National Diabetes Audit 2012–2013. Report 1: Care Processes and Treatment Targets.