Welcome to today's episode where our team lawyer, danielle Liss, talks all things about licensure and legal. She answers a specific question inside of our membership, called the Dietitian Boss Library, from one of our members who asked when is it safe to practice medical nutrition therapy and when is it not? What legal requirements are needed to practice MNT? Now Danielle answers this question very thoroughly. So I hope you enjoyed today's episode. We pulled a clip from one of Danielle's live sessions inside of their membership. If you're interested in learning more and you want more time with our guests, like Danielle, I do invite you to join the Dietitian Boss Library found at dietitianbosscom. Welcome to today's episode.
So let's talk a little bit about what this looks like, and this is a very much it depends kind of answer, and what it depends on is what you are doing. If you are doing education topics, if you are really acting more as a coach under the various statutes, then you probably are not practicing MNT, according to most states. Some of the strictest states are Ohio and Illinois, so I like to look at their statutes. I think that those are pretty helpful because they get really specific about what we can and can't do. So you need to look at the content of your programming, everything that you are offering, and see if you fall into the idea. I think in Ohio they call it non medical nutrition information, I believe is what they call it, and it's more or less.
You can't be doing anything individualized at that point. It depends on where your clients are located as to how your licensure comes into play. So if you have somebody who's coming to you from Michigan, you can work with them. There is no licensure law in Michigan, so you are able to work with them. If you have somebody who comes to you from California, same thing. If you have somebody who comes to you from North Carolina, then you need to look at that more carefully. There are a boatload of exceptions also written into the rule. Georgia is my favorite example for this, because Georgia will allow people to practice for up to five days. If they are credentialed or if you are licensed in another practice exclusivity state, they'll let you practice for up to 30 days. So that's really helpful and gives you some good options if you do have those one-on-one relationships.
So it all depends on what you are doing and the kind of programming you're offering. Let's say you've got a group program where it's primarily education but you do Q&A calls. Most of the time the Q&A is likely going to focus on the content that you're providing in the educational resources. So most of the time there I don't think that that falls into MNT, but it can also depend on what kind of questions you're being asked. So somebody says I'm having this happen. What should I do? If you respond, you should do the following. That's towing the line a little bit, but if you say, it gets into wordsmithing a little bit. But if you say a lot of times, people who are dealing with the following type of symptoms they can be alleviated by trying this. If you're not sure, try to fit them into a more educational way of responding. And what I think is very important, this is also where your contract is critical, or the terms of your program whatever it is that you're doing to say what people can expect. You need to set that boundary. So if you want to be able to work with more people and you want to be able to take people from all over the country and you are very specifically not practicing dietetics and you are not offering MNT, make sure it's clear and say very specifically we do not offer the following. And so in the contracts that I do, there's like this big old section on no medical information and it's like we are not offering medical diagnosis, treatment, prescriptions, all of these things. So today we offer guidance, support, education, but we don't offer practice of dietetics.
And depending on what type of area you work in I think that everybody knows some of this gets into probably a borderline with therapy as well. I see that, particularly for those who are in kind of the intuitive eating space, where some of it might be adjacent and might be somewhat similar to a therapeutic environment. You also need to make sure that it's clear that you are not a counselor or a psychotherapist. What I also think is important is, if those questions come up, you need to assert that boundary and say this is outside my scope of practice. I cannot help you with this, but I recommend you talk to whomever and it might not be a specific person, you may say this I really think is something that you would want to talk with a counselor about and just make sure that those referrals are really clear and hold those boundaries. I think that it becomes so hard and you're in this because you're in a helping profession. You want to help the people who are coming to you, you want to solve those problems, but I think that if you want to help all of them, then it's going to be more contained.
I think if you want to really be able to do that individual work with everybody that's kind of being able to really get into it that you are going to have to have more licensing on that side. And for some folks they're fine and they say I know I have a lot of clients who come to me from Chicago. I'm going to get an additional license in Illinois Because Delaware, the Dakotas, a lot of those states are also practice exclusivity and if you don't have clients coming from there. You probably don't necessarily need to worry about that. There is also the talk and I know that the email went out where the Academy is trying to work on compact licensure. I would love to see that happen.
We just don't know what the timing looks like and it also gets tricky because it's then you don't know who's going to join, so you don't know what states are then going to be a part of it, because it's still somewhat on a state-by-state basis. So I don't necessarily want to see people relying on that quite yet. Let's see where it falls. I'm excited about the possibility for sure, but I don't know where we're going to end up. So that's my general view on the licensure piece is think about what you're offering, think about where your people are coming from and if you know that you're offering something that is potentially MNT and some of the practice exclusivity states, you need to screen to not take those clients Simple as it gets Special thanks to our team lawyer, danielle Liss, who was able to provide her time and energy to show up live inside of our membership at Dietitian Boss Library and answer your questions.
07:20 - Speaker 1
So I only showed a small clip from several questions that our members have asked Danielle about legal questions to protect their new and growing dietitian business. If you want to learn more about Danielle and even get her support or maybe purchase some of her contracts that can help you set up and secure your business, head over to dietitianbosscom on the resources tab, where she is listed as one of our recommended resources under the legal section of our website. Additionally, if you want to join in on the fun and be a participant in our live sessions, where we have guests like Danielle, who comes in and talks about all things legal in addition to replays, I invite you to join the Dietitian Boss Library found at dietitianbosscom so you can grow your business with confidence and know what to do for your stage of business, so that you can live that flexible lifestyle while protecting your license as a registered dietitian.