§ Mr. Peter Viggers (Gosport)
This petitition relates to podiatry services in the Gosport and Portsmouth area. Its origin is a circular from the national health service of October 2001 entitled "Improving podiatry services for local people". One might therefore reasonably expect services to improve. The truth is that, of the 900 people referred monthly for podiatry care, most will not receive it and existing patients will be denied it. As the circular says:Many people with relatively low needs who have become accustomed to receiving foot care will no longer be able to do so … The podiatry service will provide shorter packages of treatment for conditions that can be improved. Ongoing care will only take place where the health of limbs is vulnerable.My constituents are baffled and angered by that and more than 200 signatures have been put to a petition that states that the residents of the area aredistressed and alarmed by the reduction in podiatry services which will end the provision of foot care to the wide range of local residents, many of whom are elderly and infirm, and notes that many will have great difficulty or expense in making alternative arrangements for foot care.The petitioners therefore plead that the Secretary of State shouldrestore services in Gosport and the other areas in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight to their former level.And the petitioners remain, etc.
§ To lie upon the Table.