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Foot ulcers are a leading cause of diabetes-related hospitalisations. Clinical training has been shown to be beneficial in foot ulcer management. Recently, improved self-confidence in podiatrists was reported immediately after foot ulcer simulation training (FUST) pilot programs. This study aimed to investigate the longer-term impacts of the FUST program on podiatrists’ self-confidence over 12 months in a larger sample.
Participants were podiatrists attending a two-day FUST course comprising web-based interactive learning, low-fidelity part-tasks and high-fidelity full clinical scenarios. Primary outcome measures included participants’ self-confidence measured pre-, (immediately) post-, 6-month post- and 12-month post-course via a purpose designed 21-item survey using a five-point Likert scale (1=Very limited, 5=Highly confident). Participants’ perceptions of knowledge gained, satisfaction, relevance and fidelity were also investigated. ANOVA and post hoc tests were used to test any differences between groups.
Thirty-four participants completed FUST. Survey response rates were 100% (pre), 82% (post), 74% (6-month post), and 47% (12-month post). Overall mean scores were 3.13 (pre), 4.49 (post), 4.35 (6-month post) and 4.30 (12-month post) (p < 0.05); post hoc tests indicated no differences between the immediately, 6-month and 12-month post group scores (p > 0.05). Satisfaction, knowledge, relevance and fidelity were all rated highly.
This study suggests that significant short-term improvements in self-confidence to manage foot ulcers via simulation training are retained over the longer term. It is likely that improved self-confidence leads to improved foot ulcer clinical practice and outcomes; although this requires further research.
This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
- Foot ulcer simulation training (FUST): are podiatrists FUST with long-term clinical confidence?
Peter A Lazzarini
Patricia M Régo
Suzanne S Kuys