The Dietitians program of the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) regulates dietitians in Texas. A license is not required to use the title “Dietitian,” however a license is required to use the titles “Licensed Dietitian” or “Provisionally Licensed Dietitian.”
TDLR recently published information for dietitians who provide telehealth services. Telehealth is health-care services delivered at a different physical location than where the provider is located via information technology, such as video chat.
To address questions pertaining to Dietitians and Telehealth in Texas, the Dietitians Advisory Board appointed a Telehealth Workgroup to collaborate with TDLR staff to clarify issues pertaining to this topic. The new information addresses considerations for where clients and dietitians are located, and confidentiality requirements pertaining to dietetic services via telehealth.
Dietitians & Telehealth: What Texas Dietitians Need to Know
The following are considerations for Texas Licensed Dietitians who provide dietetic services to clients located in Texas and to clients located out-of-state:
- You may provide telehealth services to clients who live in Texas. Texas dietitian laws and regulations do not prohibit the provision of dietetic services via telehealth. An employer has the right to restrict the telehealth method of service delivery.
- To legally provide telehealth services to clients who do not live in Texas you need to check the laws of the state where the client resides. Whether you may provide these services depends on the laws and rules that regulate dietitians in the state where the client is located.
An out-of-state licensed dietitian may provide dietetic services to clients located in Texas, unless the state where the dietitian is licensed or located prohibits doing so. There are two noteworthy Texas regulations on out-of-state dietitians:
- They cannot use the titles “Licensed Dietitian” or “LD” unless they are licensed by the state of Texas.
- Texas law prohibits a dietitian who provides services to Texas clients from using the term “Registered Dietitian” or “RD” unless the dietitian is currently registered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration.
The confidentiality requirements for a Texas licensed dietitian when providing dietetic services applies to services delivered in person or via telehealth. Per the Code of Ethics, “A licensee shall not violate any provision of any federal or state statute relating to confidentiality of client communication and/or records. A licensee shall protect confidential information and make full disclosure about any limitations on his/her ability to guarantee full confidentiality.” 16 TAC §116.105(b)(6).
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