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Licensure - Reporting Harm

Reporting Harm and Unlicensed Practice

Licensed dietitians and nutritionists protect the public health by establishing minimum educational and experience criteria for those providing services in food and nutrition.

Situations warranting filing a claim can include:

  • Someone harmed by the “care” given by an unlicensed person.
  • A person selling nutrition supplements who is actually making a nutrition assessment and counseling clients.
  • Someone practicing nutrition who has a revoked medical or nursing license.
  • A master’s degree in holistic nutrition from an unaccredited university unaware that practicing nutrition in Montana requires a license.
  • Unqualified individuals representing themselves as a nutritionist.

Dieitians are responsible to the public as outlined in the 2009 Code of Ethics of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

• Consider the health, safety, and welfare of the public at all times.
• Report inappropriate behavior or treatment of a client by another dietetics practitioner or other professionals.
• Comply with all laws and regulations applicable or related to the profession or to the practitioner’s ethical obligations as described in the ADA Code of Ethics.

Filing a complaint with the Board of Medical Examiners (BOME)

1.  Obtain form from the BOME web site, http://bsd.dli.mt.gov/license/bsd_boards/med_board/board_page.asp

2.   Click on the "Complaints" tab in the center of the page to find the form and flow sheets on what to expect after a complaint is filed.

3.  Contact LaVelle Potter, compliance officer, for any questions, concerns or hesitancy you have about filing a complaint:  lpotter@mt.gov, (406) 841-2362.

In my 5 years serving on the Board I’m aware of many complaints filed each year.  By statute each is carefully heard.  Complaints against licensees are the majority; a few are about unlicensed practice.  Complaints are a sign that the licensure system is meeting its mission of protecting the health, safety, and well-being of Montanans by licensing competent health professionals.  From time to time dietitians contact me about what to do about worrisome situations.  I urge you to take steps to submit complaints in these cases.

--- Pat Bollinger, MS RD, Nutritionist Member of the Montana Board of Medical Examiners


View handout "RD Licensure in the US and in Montana" here.

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