Auckland DHB Nutrition
What is a Dietitian?
Dietitians are health professionals who specialise in human nutrition and meal planning. Many common health problems can be prevented or improved with good nutrition.
Dietitians apply scientific knowledge about food and nutrition to individuals and groups in states of health and disease to promote optimal health outcomes within the social, economic, and cultural context of the New Zealand population.
A dietitian is a registered health professional who meets the standards of professionalism required by the NZ Dietitians Board under the HPCA Act 2003, who has an undergraduate science degree in human nutrition, as well as a postgraduate diploma in dietetics.
Dietitians provide nutrition support to clients, their family, whanau and caregivers by:
- explaining the role of food in disease management
- helping clients to make choices about foods which suit them and their lifestyle.
Inpatients - Auckland City Hospital
Your medical team or nurse will refer you to a dietitian if they feel you will benefit from a dietitian’s specialised input. A dietitian will assess and recommend a nutritional treatment to meet your needs. This may also include education for you while on the ward and/ or after you go home.
Outpatients - Greenlane Clinical Centre
Dietitians assess and treat clients with nutrition-related disorders at this outpatient clinic.
What to Expect?
We encourage you to invite carers, family or whanau to your clinic appointment with the dietitian. Interpreters are available; please let us know if you require an interpreter.
What Will The Dietitian Do?
Explain their role and ask for your consent to provide nutrition assessment and education.
The dietitian will read your medical notes and check your blood results, measure your height and weight or waist circumference and ask questions about your meal pattern, food choices and lifestyle. This will allow the dietitian to give you information that will fit in with your life.
We will work with you and your family/whanau to help you to plan nutrition and lifestyle changes. The dietitian will explain any recommendations made and why they are needed and provide written information or pictures to take away.
We will provide follow-up appointments as required to reassess your medical and nutritional status, food choices and changes made. With your consent, we may refer you to other services (for instance – Diabetes Nurses) or talk to you and your family/whanau about other groups and health professionals who can provide ongoing support when you no longer need to be seen by the dietitian.
What Do You Need to Do?
Work together with the dietitian by:
- telling us as much as you can about the foods you choose and the amounts that you eat and drink
- asking about things you don’t understand
- trying the changes suggested by the dietitian
- telling us about how the changes are going and if you are managing them
- telling us if you have difficulty understanding the written and/or spoken information.
Other Useful Nutrition Links
Clinical Dietitians work at Auckland City Hospital 8am to 4.30pm, Monday to Friday.
One dietitian covers Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays 8am to 4.30pm.
Outpatient Clinics are held at Greenlane Clinical Centre between 9am and 4pm.
Disclaimer: this information is intended solely for New Zealand residents and is of a general nature only and no person should act in reliance on any statement contained in the information provided and at all times should obtain specific advice from a health professional.
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This page was last updated at 10:08AM on August 31, 2017. This information is reviewed and edited by Auckland DHB Nutrition.