Standards of Practice

The College of Pedorthics of Canada

The code of ethics and standards are a practical guide for a registrant’s everyday professional practice. They apply to all practice areas regardless of specialization. The standards do not prescribe technical clinical management standards. The standards are, first and foremost, a tool designed to help professionals assess their practice relative to the expectations of peers, colleagues and the profession as a whole. The standards are performance baselines against which professionals may be measured if their practice is called into question.

Standard 1: Knowledge

Certified pedorthic professionals with exclusive rights to use one of The CPC’s designated titles, should hold themselves out as being knowledgeable in the practice of Pedorthics, according to the scope of their acquired credentials which are acquired through education and continuous learning.
Indicators
  1. Demonstrates an understanding of the knowledge, critical thinking and clinical judgment required for the provision of safe, competent and ethical pedorthic care.
  2. Keeps informed in their field(s) of practice and be aware of current research and developments in pedorthic care.
  3. Practices only in those fields where training and ability make them professionally competent.
  4. Expresses a professional opinion when it is founded through adequate knowledge and experience.
  5. Continuously evaluates whether they are practicing within the limits of their training and experience.
  6. Maintains appropriate documentation of increased knowledge or skills through additional learning.
  7. Accesses resources when needed to support the provision of safe, appropriate client care.
  8. Uses health promotion and health teaching appropriate to the client’s needs.
  9. Demonstrates awareness of evidence based practice and applies this understanding to the provision of client care.
  10. Participates in quality improvement practices to enhance pedorthic practice and health outcomes such as journal reviewing, attendance at conferences or educational events, engaging in evaluation of one’s own professional practice incorporating self-evaluation, peer feedback or other appropriate methods.
  11. Takes actions to address deficiencies to enhance practice.

Standard 2: Accountability

Certified pedorthic professionals need to be committed to the principle of accountability in their professional practice, in the practice of those under their supervision and in the profession as a whole as their service to society. Public interest takes precedence over self-interest, which protects the public from unethical or incompetent practice and is a core value for the profession.

Indicators:

  1. Demonstrates accountability and responsibility for own pedorthic actions and professional conduct.
  2. Maintains professional integrity and honesty when conducting professional services
  3. Practices within applicable municipal, provincial and federal health and safety codes, legal requirements, societal conventions, By-laws, Code of Ethics, Standards of Practice and own level of competence.
  4. Provides client with medically necessary services in a conscientious manner and with the client’s best interests in mind. Does not exploit clients for personal advantage. Does not provide services when in a conflict of interest.
  5. In instances where pedorthic treatment has been ineffective, the pedorthist is instructed to redirect the patient to a medical professional. The pedorthist must acknowledge when referral to an allied health provider is indicated.
  6. Delivers pedorthic care in a manner that preserves and protects client autonomy, dignity and rights.
  7. Maintains appropriate boundaries between professional therapeutic relationships and nonprofessional personal relationships.
  8. Identifies and questions situations where directions, policies or procedures may be unclear or potentially unsafe and reports such situations to an appropriate person, agency or professional body.
  9. Monitors and maintains her/his own fitness to practice.
  10. Is responsible for all treatment and services rendered by the registrant or any non-certified personnel they supervise. Certified pedorthic professionals are responsible for ensuring they are up to date on established CPC guidelines and/or position statements.
  11. Recognize a responsibility to give generally held opinions of the profession when interpreting scientific knowledge to the public; when presenting an opinion that is contrary to the generally held opinion of the profession, indicate so. When speaking with the media regarding contentious issues, The CPC must be contacted to have its opinion clarified.

Standard 3: Client Safety

The certified pedorthic professional takes responsibility for safe pedorthic practice and client safety.

Indicators:

  1. Identifies potential risks in practice and in the practice environment and takes action to minimize these risks.
  2. Reports unsafe practice, abusive behavior or unprofessional conduct by others to the appropriate authority and to The CPC when indicated.
  3. Communicates to the client the likely timeline for provision of services to ensure that client safety is maintained.
  4. Refrains from any activity that constitutes sexual abuse, neglect or any other types of abuse such as emotional, financial or physical.
  5. Ensures that the appropriate infection control treatment measures are available within their facilities/workplaces. Certified pedorthic professionals must use appropriate infection control techniques: use of gloves when appropriate, handwashing, cleaning of equipment, treatment beds and examination rooms.
  6. Has knowledge of WHMIS (Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System) which is appropriate to their specific workplaces.

Standard 4: Continuing Competence

The certified pedorthic professional engages in self assessment of practice identifying strengths and learning needs requiring ongoing professional development.

Indicators:

  1. Assumes primary responsibility and accountability for maintaining competence.
  2. Participates in the Continuing Competency Program of The CPC.
  3. Endeavors to maintain and improve professional knowledge and skill on an ongoing basis.
  4. Maintains awareness of trends, issues and changes in pedorthic care.
  5. Is willing to participate in peer review of other pedorthists and to undergo review by peers.

Standard 5: Collaboration

The certified pedorthic professional collaborates with clients, health care providers and stakeholders in the delivery of health care services.

Indicators:

  1. Utilizes effective interpersonal and therapeutic communication skills and maintains adequate written communication.
  2. Uses constructive feedback and mediation strategies to resolve conflicts and facilitate collaboration.
  3. Mentors students, colleagues and others and shares experience and knowledge to advance the profession and the care of the client.
  4. Acknowledges and respects the role and competencies of other health providers in the delivery of health services.
  5. Provide clients with the information and advice needed to make informed decisions about their pedorthic care and answer their questions to the best of their ability. Make every reasonable effort to communicate with patients in such a way that the information exchanged is understood.

Standard 6: Leadership

The certified pedorthic professional demonstrates effective leadership knowledge and skill in their own practice, as well as in the management and supervision of others.

Indicators:

  1. Models professional values, beliefs and attributes that promote the profession to clients, learners, peers and other health care professionals.
  2. Evaluates safety, effectiveness and efficiencies when delivering pedorthic care and/or assigning duties to unregulated providers, in accordance with established CPC guidelines and/or position statements.
  3. Promotes innovation and openness to new ideas which may enhance or support pedorthic practices.
  4. Contributes to the development of policies and procedures for the delivery of safe, competent, honest and ethical pedorthic care.
  5. Recognizes when he/she is unable to provide an acceptable level of mentorship to others and does not act as a direct supervisor in these instances (or in instances where there is a perceived or real conflict of interest).

Standard 7: Business Practices

The certified pedorthic professional shall engage in ethical business practices.

Indicators:

Client Records

  1. Certified pedorthic professionals will maintain clinical records and other records that document the management of their practices in order to:
    a) Facilitate the care of their clients.
    b) Provide accurate records that do not mislead or misrepresent treatment provided
    c) Enhance outcomes and safety for their clients.
    d) Provide information to enable continuity of care for their clients.
    e) Ensure their accountability to patients, payors, The CPC, the profession and other health care providers.
    f) Demonstrate their adherence to established CPC guidelines and/or position statements.
    g) Meet any other requirements mandated by the organizations they are associated with or where required by law.    
  2. Maintain confidentiality of all information In accordance with PIPEDA (Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act) and Provincial Privacy Acts.
  3. Ensure that clients are informed of their right to view their personal records and the process to do so in accordance with PIPEDA and Provincial Privacy Acts.
  4. Takes reasonable steps to ensure the electronic record keeping system is designed and operated such that the patient health records are
    a) Secure from loss, tampering, interfaced or unauthorized use or access
    b) Available as hard copies
  5. As part of a resignation or cease in practice process, the certified pedorthic professional shall, with regard to each patient health record for which the certified pedorthic professional has the primary responsibility, take reasonable steps to ensure that:
    a) Reasonable efforts are made to obtain the patients consent and the record is transferred to another registrant.
    b) The patient is notified that the registrant intends to resign and the patient can obtain copies of their health record.
    c) If the record transferred is not the original patient health record, the original record is stored in a secure location for seven years following the patient’s last visit or if the patient was less than 18 years old at the time of his/her last visit, the day the patient became or would have become 18 years old.

Recommended Links:

  • In accordance with PCI (Payment Card Industry) Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) PCI Data Security Standards (PCI DSS), the certified pedorthic professionals will take reasonable steps to ensure customer payment data is safe.
    www.pcisecuritystandards.org/merchants/

Advertising

Advertising refers to any promotional material or activity in any medium including websites. Advertising of retail operations, sales, promotions or other marketing campaigns should be separated from advertising for
professional services.

  1. a) Be confined to the presentation of information reasonably needed by clients or colleagues in making informed decisions about the availability and appropriateness of the pedorthist’s services.
    b) Make certain that any announcement or advertisement directed towards clients or colleagues is demonstrably true in all respects.
    c) Not stimulate a demand for unnecessary health care services; certified pedorthic professionals must not advertise in a way that promotes the excessive or unnecessary use of pedorthic services.
    d) Avoid bringing the profession into disrepute.
    e) Not make comparisons with other certified pedorthic professionals or other foot care professionals to suggest superiority.
    f) Refrain from making fraudulent or misleading statements concerning his or her, or the professions, skill, knowledge or capabilities.
    g) Not provide any guarantee of the success of the service provided.
    h) Not advertise coupons, discounts, pricing or free assessments for products or for professional services and/or custom made and/or modified devices. This shall include, but not be limited to advertising which expressly or implicitly states that the purchase of multiple products or services shall include one such product or service free of charge or at a discounted rate or otherwise represent a discount based on having purchased multiple products or services.
  2. Certified pedorthic professionals’ advertisements will be comprehensible, professionally appropriate and compliant with the standards of practice of the profession.
  3. Certified pedorthic professionals will also take reasonable steps to ensure that advertisements placed by others (e.g. employers, facility operators, etc.) about their services meet these standards.
  4. Professional service advertising must not contain any information that could be interpreted as a testimonial through any member-controlled medium, such as advertisements in clinics, posted to clinic or personal websites or social media applications or in other types of print or digital media utilized by a member. A testimonial is the provision by a certified pedorthic professional of a subjective statement from a patient or other individual expressing an opinion about the nature or quality of the certified pedorthic professional’s services or the pedorthic profession generally. In contrast, a truthful and independently verifiable statement that refers to the benefits of pedorthics generally without referring to a specific certified pedorthic professional or clinic and that contains information regarding the pedorthic profession that comes from a source with sufficient expertise* to make the statement will not be considered a testimonial.
    *Examples of sources with sufficient expertise include, but are not limited to, a physician or allied health care professional that has the training required to comment on the benefits of pedorthic treatment and an academic research paper that reports the outcomes of a study assessing the benefits of pedorthic treatment.

Invoice/Billing Practices

  1. Certified pedorthic professionals must advise the patient in advance as to the provision of services and/or any relevant billings, specifically:
    a) The total cost of the service.
    b) That a service may be uninsured.
    c) The specific terms and conditions relevant to payment.
    d) Any penalties for non-attendance or non-payment.
    e) If payment will be required in advance of a requested service.
    f) If invoices/receipts provided by someone other than the certified pedorthic professional, the invoices/receipts should be reviewed regularly to ensure appropriate invoicing/billing.
  2. It is unethical for the registrant to conceal or to confuse the ultimate cost of the service that he/she undertakes to furnish. Charges must be based strictly upon the product and/or services provided. The invoice must not misrepresent the products or services provided. All records (invoices, receipts, statements, etc) must contain accurate information with respect to names, dates, products and service supplied.
  3. The amount which a patient is invoiced for non-insured products must not be based on whether the patient purchases insured products.

Conflict of Interest

  1. A conflict of interest arises when a certified pedorthic professional puts him or herself into a position where reasonable people, including patients, could conclude that his or her professional judgment is influenced by financial or personal benefit. Instances where a registrant has a multidisciplinary clinic may be considered a conflict if the certified pedorthic professional refers the pedorthic client for other non pedorthic clinic services and there are no good clinical indicators for making such referrals.
  2. Certified pedorthic professionals will avoid all circumstances that may result in perceived conflicts of interest by refraining from participating in any activity or arrangement where their participation provides the potential for their professional judgment to be compromised. The conflict of interest situation is not avoided by structuring the arrangement to move any benefit arising to a related person or non-certified business associate.
  3. A certified pedorthic professional shall be responsible for the prompt identification and proposed resolution of conflicts of interest. If a real or potential conflict of interest arises, the registrant will take all reasonable steps to resolve the conflict of interest by informing all parties of the need to resolve the situation. This includes situations where a certified pedorthic professional may be asked to provide benefits to a regular referring party. Such a request would be considered a conflict of interest. Solicitation of referral agents where benefits are offered would also be considered a conflict.
  4. Offering free or deeply discounted items or substituting items as incentive for using pedorthic services is unethical and is a conflict of interest.
  5. A certified pedorthist is perceived to be in a conflict of interest when employed by a non-certified employer who engages in unethical business practices.

Conduct

  1. The pedorthist may not offer free or deeply discounted products in exchange for the purchase of multiple pedorthic products or services or otherwise engage in any practice which has the effect of stimulating a demand for unnecessary or excessive use of pedorthic services.
  2. Pedorthist shall not be employed by or otherwise associated with a clinic or business providing pedorthic services that engages in conduct deemed to be contrary to the CPC Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice.
  3. Pedorthists employed or associated with a clinic or business acting in a manner that is contrary to the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice, shall be considered to be in violation of the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice.

Standard 8: Professionalism

Certified pedorthic professionals, in private life, professional practice or outside professional activities, always conduct themselves honourably and in ways which sustain and enhance their professional integrity and the integrity of the profession as a whole.

Indicators:

  1. Recognizes that the self-regulation of the profession is a privilege and that each registrant has a continuing responsibility to merit this privilege.
  2. Replies promptly and completely to any communication from The CPC, its officials, committees or delegates.
  3. Avoids impugning the reputation of colleagues for personal motives.
  4. Reports to The CPC any unethical conduct by colleagues.
  5. Enters into professional affiliations with others only if it is possible to maintain his/her professional integrity.
  6. Each pedorthist’s commitment to act with honesty and integrity is fundamental to the delivery of high quality, safe and professional services.
  7. The pedorthic practitioner may only use those professional designations that he/she has duly earned and maintained in accordance with the regulations of the appropriate certifying and governing bodies.
  8. The pedorthist may not solicit clients or referring professionals with gratuitous or deeply discounted offers.
  9. The pedorthist must respect patients’ cultural, lifestyle, religious and ethical differences.

Standard 9: Consent

The certified pedorthic professional will obtain informed consent prior to the delivery of pedorthic care.

Indicators:

  1. Respects the right of a competent client to accept or reject any pedorthic care recommended. Pedorthists are required to indicate patient consent on their patient records.
  2. Ensures informed consent prior to and throughout service provision.
  3. Knows and adheres to regulatory, legislative and service requirements.
  4. Ensures that clients understand and agree to the involvement of other providers of pedorthic services such as non-certified personnel, students, etc. when such persons are involved.

Standard 10: Dual Health Care Practices

Certified pedorthic professionals who have dual health care practices are responsible for administering their practices as separate and distinct.

Indicators:

Dual registrants are required to:

  1. Inform the patient that the proposed treatment is outside the scope of the practice of pedorthics.
  2. Inform the patient that the proposed treatment would not be administered in the certified pedorthic professional’s capacity as a pedorthist.
  3. Ensure consent to treatment is fully informed, voluntarily given and properly documented.
  4. Keep distinct records for each practice. It should be clearly documented and made obvious under which profession the practitioner is providing services.
  5. If invoices and receipts are not generated by the certified pedorthic professional (for example if clinic owned by someone other than the C. Ped (C)), the invoices should be reviewed regularly to ensure the appropriate designation and registration number is being used for the appropriate patients and services.