Having gained your qualifications and started your business, you should want to know more. There is so much to learn that every day can be a school day. You just need to be interested and thirsty for knowledge. But where do you start and how do you access CPD?

Brenda Griffin – Only Footcare Managing Director

At the start of every new year, we are often inclined to make resolutions about the big changes we want to make in our personal lives. Get fitter, join a gym, lose the baby weight, eat more healthily etc. But what about making resolutions in our professional life? Have you thought about what you want to do this year that is going to enhance your day-to-day work and that of your patients and clients? Perhaps you want to gain additional knowledge on a subject that really interests you or that you think your knowledge is weak in.

What is CPD?

Continuing Professional Development or CPD is defined as any type of learning experience or training you undertake that increases your knowledge and deepens your understanding of a subject or role that you are engaged in.

CPD For Podiatrists & Foot Health Professionals

For Podiatrists and Foot Health Professionals undertaking CPD is important. You must continue to gain knowledge and keep abreast of the latest treatment developments in areas that interest you or that you think you should know more about. Your insurance or membership of a particular professional register may require you to undertake a certain amount of hours of CPD per year but for the unregulated FHP, there is no governance on any requirement for CPD.

How & Where To Access CPD

Many people worry that CPD is expensive, and the cost of courses puts them off undertaking further learning. But CPD needn’t cost you a thing, there are lots of free resources available.

Free CPD & Support Online

Specialty Facebook Groups offer peer support and many are welcoming to both Podiatrists and FHPs. Often they are run by podiatry tutors who offer their time free of charge. You are able to search for topics in the resources of the group. You may present a case that has you stumped and your peers will share their thoughts and direct you to specific papers on the subject. Don’t forget to use the case template if you want a response. Reading their responses, reading the papers suggested to you, and following up with a specialist in the subject – this is all CPD.

It may be that you join other online communities like the Foot Expert blog run by Dr. Ivan Bristow who is a Podiatrist specialising in Dermatology. If you are a member of The College of Foot Health, they run online and in-person CPD Events throughout the year and do occasionally open their online events to non-members. Some of the podiatry suppliers also offer free online CPD events, they are usually advertised on Facebook and to their customers who have accounts, so keep an eye on email newsletters and social media for upcoming events.

Foot Care Events & Conferences

Attending conferences and lectures is another great way of gaining CPD. Event organisers will issue a CPD certificate at the end of the event. You will be able to visit trade stands that are offering the latest treatments and protocols. Spending time with the traders will give you knowledge and understanding of all that’s available. Even if you don’t think it’s something you want to offer in your business, it’s important to know what is going on in the foot health world, so that you know who to refer your clients to. Again, this ongoing interest in your field is all CPD. Check out our Podiatry Events Page to keep up to date with where we’ll be this year.

Although there is plenty of free knowledge available, if you want to learn a new practical skill then you usually need to enrol on a course that gives you the skill and the equipment to practise the skill once you have taken the training. Take a look at our online podiatry training for ToeFX, Onyfix and Toeflex. You will need to think about the type of practice you are running: do you have the type of patients who require these specialist treatments, can you make your money back easily and get a good return on your investment? Don’t forget that any investment you make in yourself and your business is a tax-deductible expense.

Whatever you decide to learn in 2023, if it is foot related, then it is CPD and the more you know, the more you’ll want to know. Knowledge is power after all.

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