Can I get chiropody on the NHS?

Chiropodists, also sometimes known as podiatrists, treat a wide variety of foot and lower limb abnormalities, from verrucas and ingrown toenails to arthritis.

Chiropodists work with people of all ages and play an important role in helping older people and disabled people stay mobile and independent.

In most areas of the UK, chiropody is available on the NHS free of charge. However, there is no NICE guidance for foot health provision that is not associated with a long-term condition. Therefore, each individual clinical commissioning group (CCG) will decide on what to make available on the NHS, depending on local need.

Find your local CCG.

Each case is also assessed on an individual basis. Whether or not you receive free treatment will depend on how serious your condition is and how quickly it needs to be treated. If your condition is unlikely to affect your health or mobility, you may not be eligible for NHS treatment.

People with diabetes

Most people with diabetes who need to see a chiropodist are treated as priority cases, although some CCGs will only prioritise people with severe diabetes. Your CCG can advise you on its referral policies.

Referral

To have treatment with a chiropodist, you will need a referral from your GP, practice nurse or health visitor.

If treatment is available in your area, your case will be assessed and you will be added to a waiting list. If necessary, it may be possible to arrange for a chiropodist to come out to your home. Tell your GP if you will need to have a home visit.

Private treatment

If free NHS treatment is not available in your area, your GP can still refer you to a local clinic for private treatment, but you will have to pay.

If you decide to contact a chiropodist yourself, make sure they are fully qualified and registered with the Health & Care Professionals Council (HPC), and that they are an accredited member of one of the following organisations:

Page last reviewed: 26/02/2015

Next review due: 25/02/2017