Kansas law restricts the practice of dietetics to only those with a license.
The law is considerably broad, and encompassing. Exemptions exist for those who are licensed in other areas of healthcare, specifically licensed dentist, dental hygienist, professional nurse, practical nurse, psychologist, masters level psychologist, pharmacist or an employee thereof, a physician assistant, or professional counselor.
If you are an unlicensed employee of a licensed adult care home or a licensed medical care facility, you are exempt, as long as you are working under the general direction of an aforementioned licensee, or a dietetic services supervisor.
The law also exempts you to provide “nutrition information as to the use of food, food materials or dietary supplements” and to the “free dissemination of information or of literature” as long you do not practice, or hold yourself out as being licensed. If you market, distribute, or sell “food products, including dietary supplements,” you may provide information to customers regarding the use of such products.
If you are working under the “general direction” of another licensed healthcare professional, you may counsel and provide weight control services.
There is an exemption for those who have a degree in home economics, so long as your activities are within the scope of your education and training. This will most likely require documentation and to maintain direct evidence of your education and training.
Kansas has a religious exemption that is quite broad. The licensure law may not interfere in religious practices or observances of a “bona fide religious organization.” It may not also prevent any person “from caring for the sick in accordance with tenets and practices of any church or religious denomination which teaches reliance upon spiritual means through prayer for healing.”
Under this law you cannot advertise or be perceived as “assessing nutritional needs of individuals and groups” etc. You also cannot do or say anything that would give the impression that you are licensed, registered, or call yourself a nutritionist or dietitian.
Kansas allows several categories of individuals to practice nutrition and dietetics without a license, so long as they do not use the title “nutritionist” or “dietitian.” This includes:
- Dietetic technicians or dietetic assistants
- Any person licensed to practice healing arts, including dentists, doctors, nurses, psychologists, and pharmacists
- Unlicensed employees of a licensed adult care home or medical facility under supervision of a licensed professional
- Licensed physical therapist
- Representative of a trade association engaged in activities related to the practice of dietetics
- Employees of the state or political subdivision in nutrition-related programs
- Employees in the armed services, public health service, veterans administration, federal government
You are further exempt if you are conducting a teaching clinical demonstration in an educational, clinical, or health care institution. Any person can conduct classes or provide information related to nonmedical nutrition.
You may provide a general program for weight control without a license if it is reviewed by, consultation is available from, and no change to the program can be initiated without approval of a licensed or registered dietitian.
If you are an educator employed by certain programs or businesses, you are not restricted from providing services and information related to nonmedical nutrition. This includes if you are an educator employed by a:
- State or political institution
- Elementary or secondary school
- An educational institution
- Licensed institution
- Nonprofit organization
If you are enrolled in an approved academic program in dietetics, home economics, nutrition, or other such program, you are not restricted from practicing dietetics.
Source: Kansas Revised Statutes, Chapter 65, Article 59 (Exemptions found in 65-5912)