Podiatrists, Physicians Join Forces To Evaluate Podiatry Licensing
California podiatrists are partnering with the California Medical Association to consider reclassifying podiatry licensing to more closely align with that of other physicians, the Sacramento Bee reports.
Although podiatrists can operate on the foot and ankle and provide other medical services, they are not licensed physicians. Training for medical doctors generally takes several years longer than training for podiatrists.
Experts say the licensing differences mean that podiatrists are not able to fully participate in the care of patients with diabetes, who often require early treatment of foot sores or ulcers to avoid amputations.
Jon Hultman -- executive director of the California Podiatric Medical Association -- noted that Medi-Cal has stopped providing reimbursement for podiatry services. Medi-Cal is California's Medicaid program.
Podiatrists, CMA Calling for Change
Dustin Corcoran, CEO of CMA, said the association is collaborating with CPMA and the California Orthopaedic Association to consider putting podiatry training on the same level as licensing standards for medical doctors.
Corcoran noted that boosting the status of podiatry licensing could make the specialty more attractive to medical students and potentially could ameliorate the state's physician shortage.
The three associations are creating a task force to evaluate the curriculum at California's two podiatry schools. Depending on the results of their review, the groupsÂ could appeal to the national Liaison on Medical Education for a reclassification of podiatry licensing (Ferris, Sacramento Bee, 6/5).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.