|dc.description.abstract||Background: Podiatry aims and professes to undertake patient-centred practice. However, no podiatric literature was sourced that examines or discusses that most central component of our practice - the nature of our relationship with our patients; nor has any published research
specifically focussed on this area.
Aim: This study aimed to explore the nature of the patient-podiatrist relationship from the perspective of both private and National Health Service practitioners.
Methodological approach: A phenomenological approach, with a hermeneutic focus, was utilised to construct meaning and
understanding from the data of semi-structured interviews with eight participants. The researcher acknowledges herself as situated within the research, and a reflexive approach is demonstrated throughout. Iterative thematic
analysis was undertaken to enable development of meaning and understanding.
Findings: Findings were developed into six categories - relationship, engagement, role, image, reward and personal development, coming together in one overarching theme, that
Discussion and application: Professionalism is discussed through the concept of macro- and micro-professionalism. The patient-podiatrist relationship can be a lens through which to consider aspects of micro-professionalism.
This research proposes that professionalism be redefined from an explicit and public corporate concept, to its demonstration at an individual level - accepting that it is indeed professional to 'care', both for and about the patient, and that caring is beneficial to both patient and