Registered Nurses (RN, 4 yrs with Bachelors Degree) or Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN, 2 yrs training).
All nurses must have a current annual license in order to be allowed to practise (see also Certification and Professional Standards). You can verify the licensing status of a RN or of a LPN at the British Columbia College of Nursing Professionals (BCCNP).
Nurses are used to care for patients. They know a broad range of health conditions. Foot Care Nurses are required to have additional education and special training to help with Foot Care concerns.
Nurses are ideal to help with feet that require special attention, because they are trained in health care.
They will assess and monitor foot health, keep medical records, will identify early problems, network with other health professionals and refer to them if necessary.
They will also simply maintain good foot health with their care.
Foot Care Nurses are a good starting point when foot care is a concern.
A referal from a Family Doctor or a Podiatrist to a Foot Care Nurse happens often, but a referal from a Physician is not necessary.
Family Doctors diagnose a wide range of medical problems, provide some treatments, and they direct medical care.
Podiatrists are Physicians (Medical Doctors) who specialize in preventing, diagnosing and treating foot- and ankle-related pain and disorders both medically and surgically.
These professions are regulated by the BC College of Podiatric Surgeons and the BC College of Family Physicians.
Foot Care Nurses create and access medical records, and network with Family Doctors, Podiatrists, or other Physicians, and refer to them where necessary.
Pedorthists are educated and trained in how to assess, modify, design and fit custom-made orthotics, footwear modifications, and orthopedic footwear.
Estheticians, cosmetologists and make-up artists are beauty professionals who work on hair, skin, and nails to keep them attractive and improve their appearance.
A variety of descriptions are used within this beauty sector, for example the designation of Pedicurist, or Nail Services offered by Beauty Salons and Spas.
Estheticians will apply nail polish, Foot Care Nurses do not.
Estheticians are certified by Trades Training but are not licensed and not eligible to perform health care services, or diagnose and treat health conditions.
They will refer foot care concerns related to health conditions to Foot Care Nurses or Physicians.