Skip to main content

South Carolina Statutes

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

Background info and terminology

Licensure (or Certification) by Endorsement of RDN Credential/Exemptions

SECTION 40-20-60. Application; contents.

An applicant for licensure as a dietitian shall file an application provided by the department and demonstrate by acceptable evidence that he or she:

(1) has successfully completed the requirements for current registration as a registered dietitian by the Commission on Dietetic Registration; or

(2) has passed an examination as prescribed by the department and has received a baccalaureate degree or a master's degree in human nutrition, nutrition education, foods and nutrition, public health nutrition, or an equivalent major course of study from a regionally accredited college or university as approved by the department.

Licensure (or Certification) by Reciprocity or Endorsement of Another License

40-5.3 Licensure by Endorsement (in Regulations)

An applicant for licensure by endorsement must hold a current, active, and unrestricted license under the laws of another state or territory that had requirements that were, at the date of licensure, equivalent to the requirements in effect at the time of the application in South Carolina; and must submit:

(1) The completed application on a form approved by the panel, along with the required fees. Electronic submission is acceptable.

(2) A photograph of the applicant. Only a passport type (29 x 29) photo taken within the past twelve (12) months will be accepted.

(3) A copy of the valid current registration card from Commission on Dietetic Registration.

(4) The Panel may request additional verification of any requirements or credentials as it may deem necessary.

(5) If an applicant seeks licensure on the basis that the applicant has met equivalent requirements in another state or foreign country, the applicant shall attach to the application proof that the requirements of the other state or foreign country are equivalent to those of this state, unless the panel has taken action recognizing that the requirements of the other state or foreign country to be waived are equivalent to similar requirements in this state.

Temporary/Provisional Licensure (or Certification)



SECTION 40-20-110. Applicability of chapter.

This chapter does not apply to:

(1) a student enrolled in an approved academic program in dietetics who is engaging in the practice of dietetics, if the practice constitutes a part of a supervised course of study, and if the student is designated by a title which clearly indicates his status as a student or trainee;

(2) a dietitian who is serving in the Armed Forces or who is employed by any other federal agency and who is engaging in the practice of dietetics if this practice is related to the individual's military service or federal employment;

(3)(a) a person in a licensed healthcare profession providing diet, food, or nutrition information within the scope of his or her practice, except that the person may not represent himself or herself as a "dietitian";

(b) an employee of a physician or osteopath who works in the private office of and under the direction and supervision of a physician or osteopath, if that employee does not engage in the practice of dietetics or use the title "dietitian";

(4) a person who performs the activities and services of a nutrition educator in the employment of a federal, state, county, or municipal agency, or another political subdivision, or a chartered elementary or secondary school, or an accredited degree-granting educational institution if these activities and services are part of a salaried position;

(5) an employee of a state agency who is engaging in the practice of dietetics within the discharge of his or her official duties who is authorized to use the title "dietitian" and who is not registry-eligible or registered currently with the Commission on Dietetic Registration as of July 1, 2006;

(6) a nonresident registered dietitian practicing dietetics in this State for five days without a license or up to thirty days a year with licensure from another state if the requirements for licensure in the other state are substantially equal to the licensure requirements contained in this chapter;

(7) a person marketing or distributing food, food materials, or food supplements or a person who is engaging in an explanation of the use or preparation of these products or a person who is furnishing general nutrition information related to these products in connection with the marketing or distribution of these products, or is providing nutritional counseling in health, if that person does not represent himself or herself as a dietitian;

(8) a person providing weight control services through a program that does not allow program change to be initiated without prior approval by a licensed dietitian and the program has been reviewed by, and consultation is available from, a dietitian licensed in another state, which has licensure requirements at least as stringent as the requirements for licensure under this chapter, or a dietitian registered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration of the American Dietetic Association;

(9) any faith-based promotional health programs; or

(10) any act that can cause the prosecution, restriction, prevention, or control of any activity, service, or person except in violation of Section 40-20-130.

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.

Join the Academy

Members of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics receive exciting benefits including complimentary continuing professional education opportunities, discounts on events and products in, invitations to exclusive members-only events and more!