The AHDB Healthy Feet Programme was first launched in 2011. It followed extensive research at Bristol University (The Healthy Feet Project) in how to successfully help farmers reduce their lameness. The HFP is delivered by Mobility Mentors who are specially trained in herd lameness control and advisory skills. Since then, AHDB-funded research has further enhanced our understanding of lameness reduction. The HFP has also been extensively “road tested”, demonstrating that it works. Now entering its second phase, a refreshed HFP offers better tools, clearer materials and new Mobility Mentor training.
This course is open to anyone, however, only the following are able to become Mobility Mentors:
Mobility Mentor training consists of four separate modules which must all be undertaken in order to become a fully trained Mobility Mentor and be able to deliver the AHDB Healthy Feet Programme.
The four modules that must be completed are:
MODULE ONE: Technical Aspects of Lameness Disorders
This one-day workshop will be delivered online and cover the common lameness disorders, their aetiology and management. Delegates will learn the most up to date evidence-based approach to the treatment and prevention of lameness to lay the foundation for delivery of the Healthy Feet Programme.
Delegates do not have to complete this module if they can demonstrate they have previously attended the BCVA Advanced Lameness CPD Course, the RAU Level 4 Bovine Lameness and Cattle Foot Trimming Course, the Liverpool University CertAVP Lameness Module or the 3 day Blowey/Bell Lameness Course.
MODULE TWO: Delivering the Healthy Feet Programme
This one-day workshop will also be delivered as an online workshop and cover all aspects of the AHDB Healthy Feet Programme (HFP) and the recently launched HFLite. Delegates will learn how to deliver the programme, familiarise themselves with the available HFP resources and learn about the provenance of the programme and the importance of facilitation and mobility scoring.
MODULE THREE: RoMS Accredited Mobility Score Training
In order to become an approved Mobility Mentor, RoMS accreditation is now required. This involves attending an accredited mobility scoring course (see www. roms.co.uk for list of approved trainers) and passing the RoMS exam.
MODULE FOUR: Facilitation Skills
This will be a one-day, face to face, practical workshop to develop delegates’ facilitation skills and enable them to facilitate farm team meetings and the development of their Mobility Contract, and then how to follow this up with the farm
team to ensure its successful implementation.
Following completion of Modules 1-3, delegates will be granted a ‘provisional Mobility Mentor licence’. A full delivery licence will be granted once delivery of at least one HFP or HFLite and completion of Module 4 within 12 months of the provisional licence being granted.
Nick Bell, Owen Atkinson and Sara Pedersen have many years experience between them in herd lameness control. They have recently been in charge of revamping the Healthy Feet Programme and developing the new HFLite approach and are recognised
nationally and internationally for their expertise in this field. They are all experienced trainers and their workshops are engaging, popular and fun.
An online register is kept of Mobility Mentors and these are the only people who are licensed to deliver the Healthy Feet Programme. A strong network of Mobility Mentors, supported by AHDB, is envisaged as an important plank of the UK’s drive to reduce lameness in dairy cattle. As champions of lameness reduction throughout the UK, farmers will be signposted towards these individuals to help them reduce lameness.
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