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Dietetic Technician - Healthcare Career
With the growing interest in diets and healthy eating, job prospects for dietetic technicians are growing. It is an interesting healthcare career that holds many benefits for both the technician and those they serve.  


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Dietetic Technician Job Description
  Dietetic technicians work under the supervision of a registered dietician but have many independent duties commensurate with their educational qualifications. They work in a wide variety of food service settings, research institutions and other food related facilities. The diversified opportunities for employment make dietetics a very rewarding healthcare career choice.

The technicians are an important part of healthcare teams in hospitals, nursing homes, hospices and home healthcare programs. They gather data and provide specialized diets that provide nutrition to help treat and prevent disease. They report progress and any problems to other members of the healthcare teams. In some cases, they interview and help patients plan nutritious meals that are part of their diet plan. If these facilities are responsible for feeding large numbers of people, dietetic technicians plan menus and meals, order food and supplies and oversee the preparation and serving of meals. They also have a hand in maintaining safety and quality controls.

Non-medical facilities such as schools, childcare centers, corporations and correctional institutions also employ dietetic technicians. Even though the facility is not in the business of healthcare, technicians have the opportunity to contribute to good health by planning and serving nutritious meals. They have the responsibility to serve tasty, healthy meals within prescribed guidelines and budgets.

There are also opportunities for dietetic technicians in research facilities and other food related industries. They study and report on food safety and sanitation, prepare food labeling information and analyze the nutritional value of foods.

Dietetic technicians have a place in educating the public about the role a proper diet plays in a healthy lifestyle. Many health clubs, wellness centers and weight management clinics use dieticians in consulting roles.
How Can I Become a Dietetic Technician?
  Preparation for a career in dietetics can begin in high school. The student should take science courses, math, English, home economics, psychology and be strong in computer skills. The minimum requirement college requirement for employment in the field is a two-year associate degree from a college that is approved by the American Dietetic Association. The course work is a combination of classroom instruction and clinical practice. Included are food and nutritional sciences, general science classes and food service management instruction.

Someone who has a degree in another field and is interested in entering the field of dietetics can have his or her transcripts evaluated and take additional courses to qualify.

Many employers prefer to hire technicians who have met the dietetic technician, registered (DTR) credential. This is obtained by completing the dietetic course work at an accredited college or university and passing a national examination given by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). The DTR is maintained by fulfilling continuing education credits.
What is the Salary of a Dietetic Technician?
  Annual salaries are between $26,000 and $36,000. Experience, educational level, the type and location of the facility will determine the exact remuneration. Job growth is expected to increase because of the emphasis on improved dietary habits today.

A healthcare degree in dietetics is a wise investment for someone who is interested in good nutrition. The plentiful and varied job prospects will lead to a rewarding career.
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