Evaluation of the Complementary Health Provision of the Podiatric Foot Care Program for Diabetic Patients in Catalonia (Spain)

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021 May 11;18(10):5093. doi: 10.3390/ijerph18105093.


The Catalan diabetic foot health program was established in 2009 in order to prevent complications caused by type 2 diabetes. This study aims to describe its application from 2009 to 2018. The objective was to describe diabetic foot care provision in the National Health System of Catalonia between 2009 and 2018, including the number of patients and professionals involved, the causes behind patients' visits, and the most demanded codes for diagnosis and treatment filled by the podiatrist in each consultation during 2018-2020. This description was addressed through an analysis of the database provided by the Association of Podiatrists to evaluate the implementation of the program. The results for the diabetic foot health program in Catalonia showed a growth in demand from 2009 (1726) to 2018 (213,095) in terms of visits and from 2009 (1541) to 2018 (104,629) in terms of patients. The number of registered podiatrists from 2009 to 2018 increased from 165 to 470. The most commonly used diagnosis codes were (a) without sensory alterations in control and treatment of grade 1 lesions; (b) grade 0 without neuropathic, vascular, structural, or biomechanical alteration; (c) no sensory structural alterations in the foot; (d) keratopathies. The treatments most commonly used were (a) conservative (chiropody), (b) without ortho-podiatric treatment, and (c) plantar supports. The conclusions show that the health program is in great demand amongst the population. Similarly, the coding system has made it possible to identify the diagnosis and treatment of such demand.

Keywords: amputation; collaborative practice; diabetes complications; foot ulcer; health care; type 2 diabetes.

MeSH terms

  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2*
  • Diabetic Foot* / epidemiology
  • Diabetic Foot* / therapy
  • Foot Diseases*
  • Humans
  • Podiatry*
  • Spain / epidemiology