Over 100 people on the waiting list for podiatry services in Carlow, claims local senator

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Darren Hassett

Reporter:

Darren Hassett

Email:

news@carlowlive.ie

Carlow Carlow Carlow

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Fianna Fáil Senator Jennifer Murnane O'Connor has slammed the "postcode lottery of health services which continues to leave people in Carlow at a disadvantage".

Senator Murnane O’Connor said it wasn't good enough that podiatry was available in some Local Heath areas but not others.

As it stands the HSE is not legally obliged to provide podiatry services but where available, services may be provided by the Local Health Office or by voluntary organisations on behalf of the HSE.

She said: "Over 100 people are on the waiting list for podiatry services in Carlow.

"This service is currently provided, for free by the HSE, but I’ve been contacted a number of times over the past week from anxious constituents who told me the service is set to close.

"This is a much-valued service with over 100 people on the waiting list to access it. Once it closes the service will only be available at a cost leaving many people in a vulnerable position."

She added: "Podiatry mostly consists of diagnosing and treating diseases and abnormalities of the foot and lower limb. For people with diabetes, access to a podiatrist can mean the difference between healthy feet or amputation.

"For older people unable to take care of their own podiatry needs, a podiatrist will care for foot ulcers, calluses, corns, nail infections, and bunions. The treatment they provide can make an older person more mobile and give them a new lease of life.

"The need for podiatry will only continue to increase due to the rise in chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, arthritis and diabetes and awareness about routine foot care and health.

"Carlow needs to maintain this service."