News and Events for Foot Care Nurses in Canada

updated July, 2016

President’s Message

Good evening, as we open the 7th Annual General Meeting & Conference on behalf of the Executive and the Provincial/Territorial Advisors I would like to extend a warm welcome to the city of Montreal. As a National organization we are proud that we able to move the AGM & Conference across Canada, from Halifax in 2013 to Richmond in 2014, Winnipeg in 2015 and this year in Montreal and next year the gorgeous east coast of Canada. We hope that you will be joining us tomorrow night as we visit the beautiful Port of Old Montreal.

I am pleased to say we have Provincial & Territorial Advisors in all provinces and territories except PEI & Nunavut, if you know a foot care nurse in either PEI or Nunavut please give them our contact information. The Executive continues to meet via teleconferencing on a monthly basis and the Provincial/Territorial Advisors rotate on quarterly bases.

As we reflect on the accomplishment of the past year, we are reminded of the reasons we have to celebrate. CAFCN has many reasons to be proud.

This past year has brought recognition to the important role foot care nurses play in the Canadian Health Care System and in ensuring high quality, safe care for foot care clients. On Sunday morning Dr. John Collins will present the long anticipated draft of the Pan-Canadian nursing foot care competencies that will guide and monitor nursing foot care practice across Canada. This project will enable CAFCN to identify the educational requirements for safe, competent and ethical nursing foot care practices across Canada. When this project is presented Sunday morning you will note the extent of work and progress CAFCN is making and how we are using evidence-based practice to advance excellence in nursing foot care.

Last year, just days before the 2015 AGM in Winnipeg we heard that our colleague and Alberta Provincial Advisor Nancy Dennis passed away. At the conference CAFCN collected $805 which was donated to Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation in memory of Nancy. Devon Foot Care graciously donated a $500 Nancy Dennis Award – an Education Bursary towards attending the annual conference. There were no applicants this year.

CAFCN hired a consultant to research as many nursing foot care programs in Canada and compile a database of expectations (ie: exit competencies, learning objectives)

CAFCN provided the following supportive quote for CDA in their media release of their position statement Amputation Prevention for People Living with Diabetes.

The CAFCN supports the position of the CDA on amputation prevention as concerns the millions of Canadians with diabetes. Regular foot care by a trained health care professional is fundamental to preventing complications from diabetes. The foot care nurse is part of the multidisciplinary health team caring for people living with diabetes. Foot care nurses are important in assessing, treating and educating people who may be at risk and are often one of the first health care professionals to see a client who requires further medical attention.

The entire document can be found at www.diabetes.ca/newsroom/search-news/cda-urges-action-to-prevent-amputations

CAFCN supported CAWC in the standardization of the diabetic foot screening process among health care professionals. Inlow’s 60-second Diabetic Foot Screen is a validated screening tool that aids clinicians in identifying at-risk feet. The basic 12 elements of the tool require only a 10-g monofilament, good clinical knowledge and assessment skills.

The entire document can be found at www.diabetes.ca/CDA/media/documents/clinical-practice-and-education/professional-resources/60-second-diabetic-foot-screen-tool.pdf

Conferences provide a valuable forum for nurses to network and collaborate to deliver optimal care, they also afford professional development opportunities, and increase public awareness of the benefits of foot health. In addition, they support clinical research in this field of nursing. This annual conference is a great way to celebrate the important contribution foot care nurses make to our health care system.

I would like to express my thanks to the volunteers on the Executive, the Provincial & Territorial Advisors and committee members who generously donate their time and expertise to CAFCN. Your contribution does not go unnoticed. It is your leadership, knowledge, and inspiration that provide the credibility to keep CAFCN moving forward. Thank you to Kathleen Stevens and Pamela Ward for producing the CAFCN newsletter. Thank you to Carol Tomalty of Carric Design for managing the day to day updates on the website.

As we move forward we can never forget where we came from, that first meeting in 2007 of 13 like-minded nurses in Kitchener, Ontario, we are reminded of the long road ahead of us.

Once again we look forward to a fruitful and fulfilling conference with a balance of learning and fun!

You (the membership) are the power that provides the momentum to keep moving forward.

Pat MacDonald
President, CAFCN

Interested in volunteering?

CAFCN is currently looking for an individual interested in working on and developing a newsletter for members. If this is something that interests you, please contact the president@cafcn.ca for more information.