It’s such a relevant question for us pods in private practice. I suppose it depends on the urgency and whether or not it can wait for NHS podiatry referral. The NHS podaitric clinics in my area can take many weeks and, if it can wait, I fill in a referral form and send it to them. Unfortunately, their criteria has changed and they’ve written to all patients who have required orthotic assessment in the past and discharged them regardless of their underlying clinical need. If I feel a patient is in my practice and needing urgent treatment (this has usually been vascular), I ring their surgery and ask for advice and input. The surgeries can be difficult and usually ask for a fax explaining the problem and specific request. A fax can you believe in 2018!
Good luck Phil.