Medical nutrition therapy is a medical treatment. Like other non-physician practitioners providing medical treatments, registered dietitian nutritionists generally can practice MNT because of licensure and certification laws, which provide authority for RDNs to provide this medical service. It is with this understanding that the Academy strongly recommends — unless there is an applicable exception or exemption or a state does not provide for licensure or certification requirements — practitioners hold licensure or certification in all states where the practitioner's clients or patients are located when services are provided.
Links to State Boards, Statutes and Regulations
Statute and Regulation Details
Licensure (or Certification) by Endorsement of RDN Credential/Exemptions
37-25-302. Licensing requirements.
(1) An applicant for licensure as a licensed nutritionist shall file a written application with the board and demonstrate to the board that the person is registered by the commission.
(2) An applicant shall pay an application fee set by the board.
Licensure (or Certification) by Reciprocity or Endorsement of Another License
37-1-304. Licensure of out-of-state applicants -- reciprocity.
(1) A board shall issue a license to practice without examination to a person licensed in another state if the board determines that:
(a) the other state's license standards at the time of application to this state are substantially equivalent to or greater than the standards in this state; and
(b) there is no reason to deny the license under the laws of this state governing the profession or occupation.
(2) The license may be issued if the applicant affirms or states in the application that the applicant has requested verification from the state or states in which the person is licensed that the person is currently licensed and is not subject to pending charges or final disciplinary action for unprofessional conduct or impairment. If the board or its screening panel finds reasonable cause to believe that the applicant falsely affirmed or stated that the applicant has requested verification from another state, the board may summarily suspend the license pending further action to discipline or revoke the license.
(3) This section does not prevent a board from entering into a reciprocity agreement with the licensing authority of another state or jurisdiction. The agreement may not permit out-of-state licensees to obtain a license by reciprocity within this state if the license applicant has not met standards that are substantially equivalent to or greater than the standards required in this state as determined by the board on a case-by-case basis.
Temporary/Provisional Licensure (or Certification)
37-1-305. Temporary practice permits.
(1) (a) A board may issue a temporary practice permit to a person licensed in another state that has licensing standards substantially equivalent to those of this state if the board determines that there is no reason to deny the license under the laws of this state governing the profession or occupation.
(b) The board shall issue a temporary practice permit as provided in this section within 45 calendar days of receiving a completed application. The board shall notify an applicant within 10 days of receiving an application under this section of deficiencies in the application or provide information as to any exigent circumstances that may delay issuing a temporary practice permit.
(c) The person may practice under the permit until a license is granted or until a notice of proposal to deny a license is issued.
(d) The permit may be issued in the board's discretion if the applicant verifies or states in the application that the applicant has requested verification from the state or states in which the person is licensed that the person is currently licensed and is not subject to pending charges or final disciplinary action for unprofessional conduct or impairment. If the board or its screening panel finds reasonable cause to believe that the applicant falsely affirmed or stated that the applicant has requested verification from the other state or states, the board may summarily suspend the permit pending further action to discipline or revoke the permit.
(2) A board may issue a temporary practice permit to a person seeking licensure in this state who has met all licensure requirements other than passage of the licensing examination. Except as provided in 37-68-311 and 37-69-306, a permit is valid until the person either fails the first license examination for which the person is eligible following issuance of the permit or passes the examination and is granted a license. Determination regarding whether the applicant has met all licensure requirements except passage of the licensing examination must occur within 45 calendar days on a routine, complete application.
37-25-304. Exemptions from licensure requirements. This chapter does not prevent:
(1) a student or intern in an approved academic program or a paraprofessional with approved dietetic-nutrition training from engaging in the practice of dietetics-nutrition if a licensed nutritionist is available for direct supervision and if the student, intern, or paraprofessional does not represent to the public that the individual is a nutritionist;
(2) a licensed physician or nurse from engaging in the practice of dietetics-nutrition when it is incidental to the practice of that profession;
(3) a person licensed under any other law from engaging in the profession or business for which the person is licensed if the person does not represent to the public that the person is a nutritionist;
(4) an educator or adviser employed by a nonprofit agency acceptable to the board or by an accredited degree-granting institution or an accredited elementary or secondary school from engaging in an activity within the scope of the individual's salaried position;
(5) a person employed by or under contract with an agency of the state or federal government from discharging an official duty if the person does not represent to the public that the person is a nutritionist;
(6) a person from furnishing general nutritional information, including dissemination of literature, as to the use of food, food materials, or dietary supplements or from engaging in the explanation as to the use of foods or food products, including dietary supplements, in connection with the marketing and distribution of those products if the person does not represent to the public that the person is a nutritionist;
(7) a person from furnishing general nutrition information or disseminating literature if the person does not represent to the public that the person is a dietitian or a nutritionist; or
(8) a person from fulfilling state or federal regulations governing the delivery or provision of nutritional health services to hospitals or long-term care facilities if the person does not represent to the public that the person is a nutritionist.
Updated August 2023
Disclaimer: This page is not intended to constitute legal or career advice. All information, content and materials are for general informational purposes only and may not represent the most up-to-date legal or other information. This website contains links to other third-party websites, which are only for the convenience of the reader, user or browser. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and its members do not recommend or endorse the contents of the third-party sites, nor does such information necessarily constitute a legally binding interpretation of state policy. The ultimate authority to interpret each state's requirements is the licensing board or agency of that state.
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