Dietetic technicians are in charge of the daily food-service operations, they endorse nutritional and wellness programs and design balanced meals. They operate under the direction of nutritionists and dieticians. Dietetic technicians are also called diet technicians, nutrition technicians, dietary aides, and dietary clerks.
Diet technicians help nutritionists/dietitians in the everyday operation of food services. They plan and prepare meals that are wholesome and enjoyable. They work in day care centers, hospitals, nursing homes, and health care centers. Some work for schools and industries that run food-service facilities. They may also work in the neighborhood health centers that help families plan nutritious and healthy meals. Some diet technicians work as supervisors. Others are engaged in research.
Technicians who work in health care centers work directly with nutritionists to design patients’ diets. They monitor and record patients’ eating patterns and report to the dietitian. They also interact with the food-service staff in the kitchen to ensure that every meal is made in accordance with the nutritional guidelines. They function as the link between the dietitian and the food-service personnel who work in the kitchens of hospitals, schools, and factory cafeterias. They also oversee the buying, storing, making, and serving of food.Create this Resume
Dietetic Technician Skills/Duties
In general, dietetic technicians plan and design menus keeping in mind the dietary requirements of the person; they prepare meals, devise food programs; offer advice on good eating habits and meal planning; monitor, supervise and record the nutritional condition and requirements of the patients; evaluate menus and recipes; preserve records of the patients’ nutritional status and dietary progress; help with research; and buy food supplies.
Experienced technicians manage food production operations, organize and set up work agendas, and deal with the worker’s time-cards.
Dietetic Technician Education and Training
• Dietetic technicians must have a 2 year Associate’s degree, if possible, from a program backed by the Commission on Accreditation for Dietetics Education (CADE) of the American Dietetic Association (ADA).
• Vocational schools and junior colleges offer 2 year programs in dietetics. Most courses consist of some practical experience in a food-service facility.
• Certified dietetic technicians have to pass a national examination held by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) to get the certificate of a dietetic technician registered (DTR).
• The program includes classes in food and nutrition sciences, medical terminology, food-service systems management and nutritional and management counseling.
Dietetic Technician Job Outlook
Job opportunities for diet technicians look good and are estimated to increase between 2008 and 2018. An increased public awareness and concern in nutrition and food and the importance of prevention of diseases has amplified the demand for nutrition teaching, meal/menu planning, diet counseling and food service programs in hospitals, nursing homes, clinics, hospices, retirement centers, home health care agencies, day care centers, schools, health clubs, community health organizations, food-service facilities, etc.
Dietetic Technician Salary
The mean salary for diet technicians is about $27,011 to $38,090 annually). The salary varies depending on the experience, responsibility and geographic location.