For Your Information: Scope of Practice Issues

Scope Definitions


Subtitle 1. Definitions; General Provisions.

§ 16-101. Definitions.


(a) In general. – In this title the following words have the meanings indicated.

(b) Board. – “Board” means the State Board of Podiatric Medical Examiners.

(c) License. – “License” means, unless the context requires otherwise, a license issued by the Board to practice podiatry.

(d) Licensed podiatrist. – “Licensed podiatrist” means, unless the context requires otherwise, a podiatrist who is licensed by the Board to practice podiatry.

(e) Podiatrist. – “Podiatrist” means an individual who practices podiatry.

(f) Practice Podiatry – (1) “Practice podiatry” means to diagnose or surgically, medically, or mechanically treat any ailment of the human foot or ankle, or any ailment of the anatomical structures that attach to the human foot.

                                     (2)“Practice podiatry” does not include administration of an anesthetic, other than a local anesthetic.


§ 16-102. Scope of title.

(a) Individual exempt. – This title does not limit the right of an individual to practice a health occupation that the individual is authorized to practice under this article.

(b) Commercial sale or fitting. – This article does not affect the commercial sale or fitting of shoes or foot appliances.


​§ 16-103. Procedures required to be performed in a licensed hospital.

(a) In general – - All surgical procedures of the ankle below the level of the dermis, arthrodeses of 2 or more tarsal bones, and complete tarsal osteotomies that are performed by a licensed podiatrist shall be performed in a licensed hospital, subject to the provisions of §19-351 of the Health-General Article.

(b) Requirement for procedures in ambulatory surgical center. – A licensed podiatrist who performs an osseous surgical procedure of the ankle, arthrodesis for 2 or more tarsal bones, or a complete tarsal osteotomy in a licensed ambulatory surgical center must:

                                           (1) Have current surgical privileged at a licensed hospital for the same procedure; and

                                          (2) Meet the requirements of the ambulatory surgical center.


(c) Qualification requirement and delineation of privileges by hospital or ambulatory surgical center. – Nothing in this title shall prohibit a licensed hospital or ambulatory surgical center from establishing qualifications or delineating privileges for the performance of surgical procedures of the human foot or ankle, the anatomical structures that attach to the human foot, or the soft tissue below the mid-calf by a licensed podiatrist in the hospital or ambulatory surgical center.

Scope of Practice Issues Discussed by the Board


The Board suggested that those practitioners who are interested in expanding the scope of practice should address the Maryland Podiatric Medical Association (MPMA) at 1 800 560 1818 for legislative action on behalf of the profession.

Want to know if a procedure is within the scope of practice of podiatric medicine in Maryland? Then fax in your request to (410) 358 3083. Please note that the Board meets on the second Thursday of every month.


What’s Not Included in the Practice of Podiatry

Many products and programs have been developed that involve multilevel marketing and product selling. These programs, while pursued in a personal setting, have no impact on the Maryland licensing restrictions of Podiatric Medicine. However, while pursued in the doctor’s office in the treatment of patients, these products become a tool of the podiatrist in patient care. As such, it is important for the podiatrist to realize the scope of his/her practice. It is the opinion of the Board that offering “non medical” products for the treatment of hypertension, weight, cholesterol, and/or other similar medical problems does not, generally, fall within the scope of practice of a podiatrist in the State of Maryland.

Last Updated: 06/15/2014