Dietitians are healthcare professionals who diagnose and treat dietary and nutritional problems such as diabetes, IBS, Crohn’s disease, malnutrition, obesity, etc. in patients of all ages. As a member of the multi-professional team, they advise and help patients to manage their health and their conditions and support them to make lifestyle changes.
Dietitians can become First Contact Practitioners.
Benefits for the Practice
- Reducing the need to see GPs for insulin and diabetics medication
- Supporting patient referrals from GPs, nurses, and other healthcare professionals
- Helping to deliver the most appropriate medication
Benefits for the Patient
- Diagnosing and treating diet and nutritional issues
- Enabling patients to self-manage their condition
- Helping prevention of certain conditions by improving lifestyle
- Identifying allergies
Training & Development
To practise, dietitians must be registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). To register with the HCPC, completion of a degree in dietetics approved by the British Dietetic Association (BDA) is required. This is usually a BSc (Hons) degree, although there are shortened postgraduate programmes available. A degree apprenticeship standard in dietetics has also been approved.