Clinical dietitians plan and conduct food service or nutritional programs to promote health and control of diseases. They also supervise the activities of food services departments, counsel individuals and conduct research related to nutrition. They assess nutritional needs, current health plans and diet restrictions and implement dietary-care plans, in addition to providing nutritional counseling.
The duties required of a clinical dietitian include preparing budgets for food, equipment and supplies, advising patients and their families on nutritional principles, dietary plans and diet modifications and food selections and preparation, buying food in accordance with health and safety codes and monitoring food service operations to ensure conformance to safety, nutritional, sanitation and quality standards. Clinical dietitians also prepare visual aids, manuals and course outlines, test new food products and equipment and inspect meals served for conformance to prescribed diets and standards of appearance and palatability.
The skills required of a clinical dietitian include reading comprehension skills, instructing skills, speaking skills and writing skills. Reading comprehension skills are useful for understanding written sentences in work-related documents. Instructing skills are useful for teaching patients how to follow dietary instructions while at home. Speaking skills are useful for conveying information effectively to patients verbally. Writing skills are useful for communicating effectively in writing. Clinical dietitians should also have oral expression skills, deductive reasoning skills and inductive reasoning skills
Licensure and Registration