People with diabetes are at increased risk of foot ulcers, which, if left untreated, can lead to infection, gangrene, and subsequent amputation. Management by a multidisciplinary diabetes foot team has been shown to reduce amputation rates; however, accessing specialist treatment is made particularly difficult when living in remote and rural locations, such as many individuals cared for within NHS Highland. The RAPID project was made up of two phases: firstly, to evaluate the technical feasibility of a new integrated care pathway using innovative technology, and secondly, to establish process enhancement of the pathway to justify a larger-scale study. Omni-HubTM enabled a face-to-face consultation by the community podiatrist to be enhanced by virtual consultation with members of the multidisciplinary foot team, including specialist diabetes podiatrists and a diabetes consultant. The technical feasibility study provided recommended changes focused around adaptations to the equipment used and the best means to gain successful connectivity. The process enhancement study demonstrated positive outcomes in the process with positive effects both in the service received by patients and experiences of healthcare professionals involved. The RAPID project provides evidence and justification for a larger-scale empirical study to test an embedded pathway and technology solution, which will inform policy change and a paradigm shift in the management of foot ulceration in the community.
|Journal||International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health|
|Publication status||Published - 16 May 2018|