What is the difference between a dietitian & nutritionist?

All dietitians are nutritionists, but not all nutritionists are dietitians.

A dietitian is a university-qualified allied healthcare professional that provides a range of evidence-based nutrition services, which also included individual dietary counseling, medical nutrition therapy (or disease or condition-specific nutrition), group dietary therapy and food service management - as per the Dietitians Association of Australia.

A nutritionist may also be tertiary qualified and can provide evidence-based nutrition services for public health, policy, research and community health. However, not all nutritionists are university-trained and it can be tricky to know what qualifications have been completed, so always check! You can be sure an Accredited Practising Dietitian has completed 4 years of relevant training and undergone supervised practice according to a Code of Conduct.


What does APD stand for?

APD stands for Accredited Practising Dietitian. All Accredited Practising Dietitians have undertaken a minimum of 4 years of university and 20 weeks of supervised placements and are committed to undertaking a minimum of 30 hours of continued professional learning each year to maintain membership to the Dietitians Australia.


How long do consultations go for?

This depends on what you need when you first get in touch, allow a minimum of 60 minutes for your initial consultation and some time beforehand to fill in some basic information. For complex cases, I recommend a 90 minute initial consultation. Review or subsequent appointments are generally shorter, 30-50 minutes, again, depending on the complexity.


What kind of questions are asked in an initial consultation?

The general types of questions that may be asked in your first consultation will include: why you are interested in seeking dietetic advice, your expectations of working together, a bit about yourself, weight history and update your measurements (this is completely optional), reviewing recent and/or past bloodwork, looking at your medical history, family history, medications, supplements, bowel habits and any other issues you are experiencing surrounding food. This is then followed by a comprehensive history of your day-to-day diet, a bit about your activity levels and anything else that may be relevant. We then work on some options that may work for you and you can decide which path fits you best, which is the beauty of a person-centred approach.

You can read more about what an initial consultation involves here. 


Do you prescribe supplements?

I do not “prescribe” supplements. I can provide you with recommendations and appropriate dosages if and when they are required, this is on a case-by-case basis. Using my food-first approach, I prioritise foods that can be consumed to get the nutrients you need. However, there are some circumstances which are unavoidable and supplementation is required, please ask for a recommendation in our consult.


Do you arrange blood tests for me?

I do not arrange private blood testing. I can write back to your referring doctor and/or specialist and request certain measures to be considered, however, it does warrant a trip back to your doctor for the pathology request to be initiated. There are limited cases where I may recommend private testing, which is completely optional and this can be arranged directly with me.

I do offer evidence-based omega-3 blood testing through a private laboratory called OmegaQUANT for a small fee, this is to get a better understanding of your omega-3 status which is important for conception, pregnancy and breastfeeding as well as general health. Don’t be shy, ask me in your next consultation for more details about omega-3 testing.

If you would like to come prepared, please get in touch with me and I can provide some guidance as to what testing may be appropriate in your situation before attending your initial consultation with me.


What rebates are available for my consultation?

Private: If you have private health insurance, depending on your policy and level of cover, you may be eligible for a rebate on your dietitian appointments. Please check with your insurer directly if you are covered and how much you will get back, as this varies from person to person.

Medicare: You may be eligible for Medicare rebates for up to 5 allied health (including dietitian) appointments per calendar year under a Chronic Disease Management Plan or Team Care Arrangement Plan. These plans can only be generated by your GP and you must meet certain criteria for you to be eligible. Speak to your GP about this scheme and whether it is right for you.

Rebates must be claimed manually using the receipt issued to you via email at the end of your appointment.


Do I need a referral?

No!

You do not need a referral to access services if you are coming with your private health fund or are willing to pay out-of-pocket. A referral from your GP is necessary if you are looking to claim a Medicare rebate, this needs to be presented at your first appointment to ensure you get your rebates.


Can I see you face-to-face?

I am a virtual practice, which means I do not offer any face-to-face options for consultations. However, don't fret, I offer all one-on-one services virtually via Zoom! We know from research and through client feedback that virtual or telehealth consultations are just as effective in terms of results and more convenient for clients, say goodbye to travel time, finding a carpark and long drives!

When you book a virtual consultation, you will simply receive a link to your virtual appointment, plus a reminder email 48 hours prior to your appointment. Hop onto your device (preferably a laptop or desktop) about 5 min before your appointment time to quickly download the program then click the link to connect to your appointment.

Receipts will be issued after the appointment concludes via email.


What is your cancellation policy?

Providing less than 48 hours notice to cancel or reschedule your appointment will incur a $60 cancellation fee, which cannot be claimed through Medicare or your private health fund. This also applies to non-attendance to appointments. This is to allow others who also need an appointment timely access to my services


What is your privacy policy?

Privacy and confidentiality are important when it comes to your personal and health information, and this is a key priority. You can read my privacy policy here.