Although podiatric medicine is not currently recognised by Medical Council of India as a specialty, there is a growing demand to manage a range of foot pathologies including diabetic foot disease amongst the region’s 30,000 clinicians. Diabetes is fast gaining the status of an epidemic in India where more than 62 million individuals are currently diagnosed.
The partnership started in September 2017 and in June 2018 the first round of educational activity was finished. Nearly 50 students completed a combination of online learning and tutorials on subjects such as the evaluation of local and systemic pathology with particular regard to diabetes, musculo-skeletal management and vascular disease.
The appraisal and interpretation of diagnostic images from a range of imaging modalities as well as guidance as to the interpretation of kinetic and kinematic assessment to inform patient management.
This was followed by the delivery of a clinical skills course in partnership with Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Chennai (Tamil Nadu). This course built on the academic content of the online course by teaching practical skills to participants.
The two courses are the first steps on a pathway towards completing the MPFM exam, which will be held in September 2018 (part one) and March 2019 (part two). Candidates who successfully sit the exam are eligible for membership of the college’s Faculty of Podiatric Medicine.
The college hopes that this pilot programme will allow it to reach and engage with a growing audience of members and potential members in the region, which already has one of the highest concentrations of college memberships in India.
Professor David Galloway, Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow president, said: “This partnership has been a great success in a number of ways. Not only has our college supported a core group of clinicians down the path towards gaining accreditation in podiatric medicine through the MPFM exam, but we’ve been able to support our partners in India to directly address this growing need for developing podiatric skills required to combat this growing health problem.
“We’ll now look to expand this model to other parts of India, including West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh. It’s been good for our College, has strengthened our partner organisations and will support better care for patients.
“I look forward to seeing further developments in this area in the months and years to come.”