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Podiatry Assistant Apprenticeship

Podiatry Assistant Apprenticeship

In this position, you will be working under a podiatrist’s supervision. Therefore, you will engage with patients before and after the Podiatrist has seen them.

Podiatry assistants support the Podiatrist clinically; thus, you will ensure they have all the necessary tools to treat patients. This involves preparing the treatment area, providing the Podiatrist with equipment and instruments, and removing them at the end of the therapy.

In between sessions, Podiatry Assistants clean and sterilise equipment to prepare it for the next patient.

You will greet patients and lead them into the treatment room when they arrive. This is an excellent opportunity to reassure concerned patients, for example, by detailing what will happen.

You will help the patient in getting comfortable in the therapy room. You will prepare them for treatment by, for example, cleaning their feet.

After a Podiatrist has inspected and analysed their foot problem, you may provide simple remedies to the patient. Dressings and toenail clipping are examples of these.

You might have your own patient caseload, visiting people regularly for minor treatments and ongoing advice.

Podiatry Assistants also do secretarial work. You will keep track of the surgical equipment and order replacements as required. You will be responsible for writing patient notes and presenting them to the Podiatrist for signing. You might also help the Podiatrist evaluate the patient’s problem by asking questions and taking notes.

While the bulk of your work will be in local clinics, you may be called out to treat patients in their homes alongside the Podiatrist.

You may also advance to Assistant Practitioner roles, where you will be in charge of more complex activities.

Responsibilities

Throughout your apprenticeship, you may help:

  • prepare patients for treatment by a podiatrist
  • support a podiatrist during a procedure
  • treat patients who have already been assessed by a podiatrist
  • cut toe nails and apply dressings
  • carry out general clerical tasks and make appointments
  • provide advice on foot and nail care, particularly for patients with diabetes.

Salary

  • You’ll be paid on the Agenda for Change (AFC) pay system, typically starting on £18,545 band 2.
  • Experienced podiatry assistant can earn up to £21,776 per year.
  • You’ll also have access to our generous pension scheme and health service discounts, as well as 27 days of annual leave, plus bank holidays, which increases the longer you’re in service.

Working hours

Your standard working week will be around 37.5 hours and may include a mix of shifts, such as nights, early starts, evenings and weekends.

Working environment

You could work at a health centre, at a client’s home, in an NHS or private hospital or at a GP practice.

You may need to wear a uniform.

Qualifications

Qualifications you can achieve as an apprentice podiatry assistant include:

  • Level 3 Senior Healthcare Support WorkerEntry requirements for this level include 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship. This qualification will take 18 months to complete.

The senior senior support worker qualification has a training option for podiatry assistants.

Skills

On a podiatry assistant apprenticeship, you’ll learn:

  • knowledge of how the human body works
  • customer service skills
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • the ability to work well with your hands
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device.

Employers

Employers include the NHS, private sector podiatry practices and the retail sector, such as department stores.

Opportunities for Podiatry Assistants occur in towns and cities throughout the UK.

Professional development

You will get the training you need to work as a podiatry assistant. This includes:

  • diseases and conditions of the skin and nails
  • anatomy and physiology
  • conditions of the feet and legs
  • nail operations.

Some podiatrist assistants join the Royal College of Podiatry as associate members. They provide podiatrist assistants training, conferences, and seminars to help them improve their abilities and network with others in the industry. You may apply to work as a podiatrist.

Career prospects

With experience you could move up to an assistant practitioner post. You could then apply to train as a podiatrist.

If you’re self-employed, you could set up your own business.

Updated on December 27, 2022

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