We cannot underestimate the power and political push of this nationwide campaign. I am not a politician but the atmosphere, the sheer determination and passion of those of us involved in raising awareness of lower limb and foot conditions would give Boris a run for his money!

On Tuesday, 23rd July 2019, I was honoured to receive a personal invitation to attend the parliamentary debate on “Lower Limb Wound Care” brought forward by Rt Hon Ann Clwyd, MP for the Welsh constituency of Cynon Valley. Ann, as she insists to be informally referred as, has brought to the House and to a greater political audience her own personal experience of living with a leg ulcer, echoing the silent voice of the common people suffering with a chronic wound.

Describing it as “the most painful thing I have ever come across,” the Rt Hon Ann Clwyd MP arrived at Parliament straight from her hospital bed to speak on the subject of lower limb wound care.

“…wound care is a massive challenge to the NHS, but it currently lacks priority, investment and direction. I want to push the Government, if they need pushing, on the need for urgent action and the development of a strategy across care providers to improve the standard of wound care”.

Ann demanded for the Government to ensure the opportunity for all patients to have access to high-quality lower limb wound care by supporting the work of the national wound care strategy programme for England on improving the quality of wound care in the country.

The parliamentary debate went on to raise awareness on a topic I am particularly passionate about: lower limb and foot conditions in the homeless populations. It is a massively under resourced and hidden part of wound care and one where patients often sit on the margins of society, making them hard to reach and treat.

A big part of this work is “prevention” of venous ulcers for people with a history of injecting in the lower limbs. I have the privilege to run a new wound care clinic for the homeless that is underway just off Warren Street in central London. An exciting nurse-led initiative to review in a timely manner all patients who are rough sleeping, in hostels, squatting or sofa surfing or of no fixed abode.

The Rt Hon Ann Clwyd MP described the homeless wound project as “an excellent development called the Camden Health Improvement Practice pilot wound clinic. I think everybody would applaud this as a very necessary and useful thing to do, and we look forward to hearing more about it….I hope the Minister will respond on this issue, because when I think of the pain inflicted on people—luckily, my pain is managed, but the pain of the homeless, for example, who are sleeping rough on the streets, is not generally being managed—it is clear that this Camden project is a very welcome development”

Read the full debate: Lower Limb Wound Care

This is only the beginning please continue to keep up to date with all the latest news, there is lots more to come in 2020! If you have any feedback or ideas we welcome all comments through our website or email support@legsmatter.org.

Dr Jemell Geraghty, Nurse Consultant Tissue Viability, Turning Point

Twitter: @woundnurseUK

Dr Jemell Geraghty of Legs Matter