Discussion about Prof-Ed opportunities and events

Prof-Ed Privacy Measures Have Been Updated

Professional Education Privacy Policy

Claudio Barbieri www.page1ranking.com

Professional Education cares about the privacy and security of all the users of the website. The website itself is hosted on robustly-protected, secured servers owned by web design and development guru, Claudio Barbieri, Page1 Ranking of Cape Coral, Florida.

Co-Founder Karen Hodges shares “Over the last few weeks, Claudio has been working hard to migrate his clients’ websites over to new, super-secure servers. He’s added additional layers of security with cutting edge technology. That’s one of the things we love about working with Claudio—he keeps refreshing his equipment, software and protocols with the very best he can find.”

In compliance with the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) which was put into place in 2016, Professional Education has put into place several security measures to safeguard its website visitors from the potential for security breaches. For example, “We do not actually collect credit card payment information from our students,” states Hodges, the company’s designated Data Protection Officer.  “Instead, we utilize third party credit card processors who have data security measures of their own in place. This is just one way in which our students’ information is safeguarded.”

What is the GDPR?

In April 2016, the Parliament of the European Union adopted data protection regulation for every company that does business with its citizens. They created specific requirements which must be in place effective May 25, 2018.

Any company that stores or processes personal information about EU citizens within EU states must comply with the GDPR, even if they do not have a business presence within the EU. Specific criteria for companies required to comply are:

  • A presence in an EU country.
  • No presence in the EU, but it processes personal data of European residents.
  • More than 250 employees.
  • Fewer than 250 employees but its data-processing impacts the rights and freedoms of data subjects, is not occasional, or includes certain types of sensitive personal data. That effectively means almost all companies.

These regulations carry the force of law and incorporate very stiff fines for those who play fast and loose with website user data they gather. Some of the requirements are that the website must have and post a privacy policy explaining what data is collected, what is done with it and whether or not if it’s shared with third parties. You can read Prof-Ed’s Policy Statement here at this link.


Exciting New Course: Strategies for Entrepreneurial Nurses

SEN-2017-entrepreneurial-nurses-prof-edProf-Ed is excited to launch a new training program chock-full of strategies, processes and techniques for establishing yourself in a boutique nursing practice.

Are you tired of “clocking in” for an institution? Hate begging for time off and getting cheated out of holidays you were supposed to spend with your family? Ever dream of “being your own boss?” What if you could set your own schedule and block out time off when you needed it? What if your work could be targeted for the specific types of patients you want to work with? Can you imagine work that isn’t 3/4 paperwork and meetings and 1/4 patient care, but more time spent doing what you really want to do…taking care of people?

Strategies for Entrepreneurial Nurses is a 5-module program that will answer many questions you would face in determining whether you wish to pursue an independent nurse practice, and if so, how to go about setting one up efficiently.

Written using as an example a “healthy feet” Routine Foot Care practice, the ideas, strategies, checklists, etc. could be used for any nursing care modality. Module Titles are:

Module 1: A New World for Entrepreneurial Nurses – a discussion of the evolving need for non-traditional health care and how nurses can take advantage of a growing population segment.

Module 2: Setting up Your Practice – discussion, illustrations, photographs, checklists and more to help you in your planning, licensing and budgeting process.

Module 3: New Marketing Strategies – tried and true techniques for creating referral networks in your community, including winning over medical practitioners who need support for routine “healthy” care, creating physician extenders which allow them to focus on patients with greater needs.

Module 4: Growing Your Business – effective internal and external marketing techniques which will help you attract your desired patient demographic.

Module 5: Resources for Entrepreneurial Nurses – suggestions on how to find good vendors, examples of collateral materials with proven track records, sample forms, and much more.

As a bonus, the purchase of this course includes 2 hours of consultation with our experts who have years of setting up successful and flourishing boutique businesses. You tell us what area of expertise you need and we will be happy to speak with you about your unique potential.

The course is live and available now. Click here to learn more Strategies for Entrepreneurial Nurses.

FCNs Must Test for PAD

Foot-care-trained nurses are quick to spot troubling symptoms in their patients’ lower limbs and feet

Peripheral artery disease (PAD), sometimes called Peripheral Vascular Disease (PVD), is a disease in which plaque may build up in the arteries outside the heart that carry blood to the head, organs, and limbs. This plaque is made up of fat, cholesterol, calcium, fibrous tissue, and other substances in the blood. When it builds up in the arteries, the condition is called atherosclerosis. Unless prevented or treated, plaque can narrow the flow of blood in the arteries.

This limits the flow of oxygen to organs and other parts of the body which can ultimately lead to death of a patient. It can happen in any organ but is more often in the legs. (PAD can also be from other causes than atherosclerosis.)

According to the CDC, PAD can be asymptomatic, causing a dangerous situation for sufferers as it can lead to coronary artery disease and cerebrovascular disease, which could lead to a heart attack or stroke. For this reason, patients with risk factors should be tested for PAD to allow early diagnosis of the disease, if it is present.

Risk Factors for PAD are:    

Foot exams reveal symptoms of PAD

 Smoking
 High blood pressure
 Atherosclerosis
 Diabetes
 High cholesterol
 Older than age 60

Foot Care Nurses must be fully educated about this disease. Studies show that about half the cases remain unrecognized, allowing a high risk of ischemic events in the future of these patients. Therefore, if a patient has pain, numbness, aching, or heaviness in the leg muscles (possibly claudication) with exertion which is relieved with rest, it’s time for a complete exam and to test of PAD.

Check for these symptoms:
 Weak or absent pulses in the legs or feet
 Sores or wounds on the toes, feet, or legs that heal slowly, poorly, or not at all
 A pale or bluish color to the skin
 A lower temperature in one leg compared to the other leg
 Poor nail growth on the toes and decreased hair growth on the legs
 Erectile dysfunction, especially among men who have diabetes
 Muscle atrophy
 Hair loss and smooth shiny skin

Diagnosis of PAD
In patients with these symptoms, the ankle-brachial index (ABI) is indicated. It’s a simple and quick, non-invasive test that measures the blood pressure in the ankles and compares it with the blood pressure in the arms at rest and after exercise. If the ABI is <0.9, the patient must be immediately referred to a vascular specialist. This physician will prescribe imaging tests such as a Doppler ultrasound, magnetic resonance angiography (MRA), and computed tomographic (CT) angiography. These tests provide additional information in diagnosing PAD.

Conclusion: Foot Care Nurses with knowledge of PAD can save lives through responsible practices. If a patient 1) has symptoms that indicate PAD or 2) has the risk factors for PAD, the FCN must conduct an ABI. This test will determine potentials for the presence of PAD and whether he or she should be referred to a specialist.

September is Pain Awareness Month

Did you know…

Gout is one of the fastest growing arthritic illnesses in the United States.

It is very painful and is difficult to treat. Caused by the imbalance of uric acid in the joints, one of the most affected joints in Gout is the hallux. Foot Care Nurses will see patients who have this form of arthritis. In many cases it can be successfully managed through dietary changes.

FCNs must know the dietary changes that will manage this disease and then educate their gout-suffering patients on these tactics. The most effective dietary change is reducing the amount of uric acid levels; this will reduce the number of attacks.

The Arthritic Foundation has an excellent blog titled “What Role Does Diet Play in Gout Management”

A second great informational blog is titled “Making Smart Meat Choices if you have Gout”

These blogs are written for the consumer but are excellent education for Foot Care Nurses to pass on to their suffering patients.


New Course: Foot Care with Electric Files

Nurses who provide foot care for their patients need electric filing skills.

Tending to your patients requires manual dexterity–and a smart nurse will use all the tools available. Hand-held rotary devices (aka electric files or e-files) are just one of those tools…but they have many benefits.

Benefits of Electric Files

First and most logically, perhaps, is that any time you are reducing the thickness of a thickened nail or taking down excess callus, using a specialized abrasive will be faster. Targeting a specific area with a properly braced abrasive can allow quick, yet comfortable, reduction of excess nail or callus.

New Course Offered: Foot Care with Electric Files

Something you might not have thought of, is that taking down callus or thickened nails can be safer with an electric file. There is the opportunity for injury with any hand-held implement–whether a hand-held file or an electric machine–but it is easier to safely confine the abrasive surface to the desired area if the hand is still, rather than moving back and forth with manual debridement.

Another benefit to an electric file is the longevity of your career. Repetitive movement stress on your shoulder, elbow, wrists, etc. can be reduced greatly by using an electric file.

Electric File Training

Learning to safely use an electric file is first, learning about your machine and the bits or burrs, and secondly, learning a safe way to practice. One of the best things to do is to take a training course that breaks down the machine, its parts and the burrs, and then practice on yourself. You will quickly learn what the “ouch” factor is if you abrade your own callused area too long and heat it up! Professional Education’s course not only teaches you all the moving parts, but it also shows you some practice techniques you can set up for yourself. The videos embedded in the course show a couple of grips to hold the hand piece as well as demonstrate several specific tasks the electric file can help you safely, quickly perform.

Click here to read more about this course.


Diabetes Requires Specialized Foot Care

It is estimated that up to 25% of all diabetics will develop a diabetic foot ulcer (1)

One of the cruelties of Diabetes Mellitus is that the people who are at most risk are often hurt the worst because they have lost sensation in their extremities. Neuropathy manifests not only with burning/tingling/itching “phantom” pain, but many times with complete loss of sensation. Neuropathy can allow injuries to go unnoticed, and therefore untreated–often times past the point of recovery in the wounded area.

Prevention is the Best Medicine

The best possible scenario for a diabetic is that the skin is never broken or otherwise traumatized. This means safe, careful care of the body, but especially the feet.

Why are the feet any different than any other body part?

Because the sheer distance away from the core means reduced circulation and less oxygen, nutrients and waste removal is happening. Wound management is simply different for the feet than any other area of the body.

In a survey of nursing textbooks, foot care was barely addressed–maybe a few paragraphs–a page or two at the best. Yet nurses are the front-line foot care providers for many patients. They see the patients before the doctor ever walks in the room and are more likely to hear complaints of foot pain. They provide the primary care for many patients–including providing Routine Foot Care.

Routine Foot Care

As defined by Medicare, Routine Foot Care (RFC) includes tasks such as cutting or removalslide pic 2 of corns and calluses, the trimming, cutting, and clipping of nails, or hygienic or other preventive maintenance, including cleaning and soaking the feet. Many times these tasks are performed by nurses, allocating the doctors’ time spent with the patient to more pressing health issues.

RFC may be a very simple task under ordinary circumstances; however, when there is the presence of a chronic illness, especially one which impedes healing, the risks associated with little “nips” or “cuts” during procedures become overwhelming.

RFC by Trained Foot Care Nurses

In many states, nurses working within their scope can perform RFC for their patients, while in others, a specialty certification is required. Once such specialized certification is the Certified Foot Care Nurse® by the WOCNCB. Whether a nurse seeks this certification or not, this specialized training is a must for all nurses who provide foot care as primary care providers. To learn more about foot care training programs, visit www.prof-ed.com

(1)CDC Review Preventing foot ulcers in patients with diabetes Singh N, Armstrong DG, Lipsky BA JAMA. 2005 Jan 12; 293(2):217-28.


What do Chronic Illnesses Mean for Your Patients’?

How do these chronic illnesses affect the feet and lower legs of your patients?CIR782 WHO graph

The CDC, World Health Organization and countless others exert a lot of effort estimating the impact of chronic illnesses on today’s world population.  How do these issues affect you and your patients? One direct impact is the care of their feet.


Routine Foot Care – is defined by Medicare as the activities of trimming of nails, thinning thickened nails, reducing excess calluses and application of moisture.  These routine acts are often impossible for your patients to perform for themselves….they need your help!

Did you know there are nurses who are trained to safely perform the activities of Routine Foot Care (RFC)…and more!  They are trained to recognize any out-of-normal conditions of the feet and lower legs and make appropriate referrals to physicians when needed. YOU could become one of these nurses.

Often nurses in long term care facilities, home care employment and even floor nurses are the ones responsible for seeing to the feet and nails of their patients. If you are not well-trained and confident in your skills, you might put this type of care off as long as possible…which could be dangerous to a patient. Taking an online course is an excellent introduction to the process of becoming certified in foot care.

Wound Care – is a discipline unto itself. All nurses must be capable of working with wounds, but wounds of the lower extremities have real differences in their healing process. Do you know what is different about wounds of the feet? What should you be aware of when working with a foot ulcer? Are you familiar with the various off-loading therapeutic appliances?  These are topics that are covered in Prof-Ed’s courses.

Neuropathy – is a common side affect of both diabetes and PAD. Did you know not all manifestations of neuropathy are alike? It’s a continuum…from small occasional twinges of sharp pains or “pins and needles” through shooting pains all the way to complete constant burning. And then there’s the loss of sensation…from spots of inability to feel temperature differences to occasional numbness to complete loss feeling of any kind. It’s both too much sensation and not enough sensation.

Do you know the various assessment tools for determining LOPS (Loss of Protective Sensation)?  Helping your patients understand what their neuropathic symptoms mean for their lives is vital.

Foot Care Specialty – is a valuable commodity for your career. The need for this specific skill set is huge…and growing as the “Boomers” are aging. Approximately 25% of Americans have been identified as “Baby Boomers.” This is a huge patient demographic…and they will need help with their feet! Get yourself trained and ready to meet the demand.



The Quest for Interesting CE Hours

“More CEs…I need more CEs!”

As a nurse you’re required to keep up with your training, and every licensure period you must have a certain number of CE hours. There are many educational opportunities out there, but very few deal with the feet. What? The feet, did you say?

Yes, the feet may be lowly and humble, but problems with your feet can literally take you to your knees! Patients often will put off “little dings” or annoyances, but when they do finally book a medical appointment, you often get a laundry list of medical complaints. And then they add “Oh, and I’ve been having problems with this right foot.” After this program, you will be ready for this to happen.

Think back on your training days….do you remember that chapter on the feet and lower extremities? No? Not really? We surveyed eight nursing text books and the feet were barely mentioned. No interventions. No treatments. No comprehensive list of conditions that you should be looking for with every office visit.

With all that in mind, we have designed an online program in which you can put everything together and bridge the information gap in your textbooks with our foot care-specific training programs. At the same time, you can also earn your required CEs.

  • Our LPN/LVN course grants 12 CE contact hours and you will learn to recognize and understand the implications of your observations during foot assessments. And these skills will add to your value in your position!
  • The RN course grants 24 CE contact hours (1) and you’ll garner the knowledge you need when baby boomers and those with chronic health conditions present with foot complaints. The course also serves as a prep course for the WOCNCB’s CFCN exam. With this online program, you can take advantage of adding another board certification to your skill set and command a higher salary.

Book your course and get the vital information you need to take care of the multitude of foot conditions you see with confidence. You’ll earn some new and interesting CEs…and your patients will thank you!

(1) Editor’s Note: In October, 2017, the biennial review and update of the RN course added more materials and the CEs allocated for this course was increased to 25 Contact Hours.

Why Foot Care Training?

“My training stopped at the ankles,” she said.

My mother was an adult on-set diabetic. She was a cosmetologist and took care of her own feet, and I remember when she told me she was afraid to let anyone else touch them. When I asked her why, she said, “I’m afraid someone might cut me.”  As a youngster that made perfect sense, but as an adult with extensive education in foot care and the conditions that affect our feet, her words take on much more meaning.

My business partner, Janet McCormick, and I both have immediate family members who have health conditions that directly affect the health of their feet and legs. Along with my mother, my brother is diabetic. Janet’s mother was also diabetic, as well as two sisters. Her brother-in-law recently was diagnosed with melanoma on the plantar surface of his foot. It was discovered on his very first dermatological scan—who knows how long it had been there! Both of us are passionate about getting more foot care information into the hands of those who need it the most: first contact and routine health care givers.

Who needs foot care training? Those who see patients! Whether you are a nurse, a medical assistant, a nursing assistant or a caregiver, you need to know about foot-specific conditions, diseases, disorders and the implications that chronic health conditions have on the lower limbs.

We surveyed 8 nursing textbooks. A couple of them devoted a few paragraphs to foot care…one had more: one and a half pages with pictures and all were anatomical in nature. None of them gave information about recognizing specific foot-related conditions. None of them offered nursing interventions. None of them gave treatments of any kind. This is a huge gap in nursing care training. One of the nurses that worked with us in the development of our RN course said, “Basically, my training stopped at the ankle.”

What can Prof-Ed offer? We promise you that our courses are thorough and tailored to your level of licensing. It will give you the knowledge you need to confidently assess your patients’ feet and integrate your findings in the context of their overall health. Your training in wound care will be extended to cover the special requirements of wound healing on the feet. Your new knowledge of how underlying chronic conditions can manifest in the feet will give you the early warning system you need to prevent loss of limbs…and lives. Join us in our quest to educate and inform medical providers, patients and their caregivers about the utter necessity of proper foot care.