People with diabetes have a much greater risk of developing problems with their feet, due to the damage raised blood sugars can cause to sensation and circulation.
This can lead to amputation as a result of incurable foot ulcers.
Now a charity has said NHS England could save as much as £250million a year – a quarter of the £1 billion it spends on diabetes foot care.
Diabetes UK found significant savings could be made by improving foot care services and by reducing the number of foot ulcers in people with
The charity said the savings should be ploughed into improving treatment for people with foot ulcers.
It argued saving £250 million would pay for the 7,000 podiatrists needed in England to ensure every person with diabetes received adequate specialist foot care.
Chris Askew, Diabetes UK chief executive said: “There are more than 20 leg, foot or toe amputations each day and most of these result from a diabetic foot ulcer.
“Today, around 60 to 75,000 people with diabetes experience a foot ulcer.
“That’s roughly the same as the whole population of Boston, Lincolnshire.
“NHS Commissioners should be spending money treating ulcers rather than on managing their extreme consequences.
“And prompt treatment for a person with a foot ulcer can prevent both the personal and economic cost of an amputation.
“It makes sense for NHS Commissioners and budget-holders to invest now in effective foot care services, especially as the diabetes crisis facing the UK means an ever growing…