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Meeting with a dietitian can help you meet your nutrition goals and get the best nutrition care. This handout will explain how you can schedule an appointment with a Registered Dietitian, how to find a dietitian and what will happen at the first appointment. It will also explain how you can work with the dietitian to make sure you receive the best care for your needs.
There are a few ways you can schedule an appointment with a Registered Dietitian. Here are a few tips:
You can schedule an appointment with a dietitian by calling your primary care doctor. Ask the doctor to send a referral to the dietitian.You should also call the dietitian’s office to make sure he or she has received the referral. Ask if the dietitian needs any other documents to schedule the appointment.
It is best to call your insurance company to check for your level of coverage. When you call your insurance, ask about the Medical Nutrition Therapy benefit.If you have a private health insurance company, it should have good coverage for many nutrition concerns. These concerns include weight gain, weight loss, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, food allergies or tube feeding.If you have Medicaid, coverage varies by state. If you have Medicare, it will cover only diabetes, chronic renal insufficiency, end-stage renal disease or post-kidney transplant.
At the first appointment, the dietitian will ask questions about you. The dietitian will also ask about your eating habits and nutrition goals.
Then, the dietitian will help you make a nutrition plan. The plan will include your food likes and dislikes, lifestyle and health. The dietitian will also help you choose a few smaller goals to work on during the week after the first appointment.
Before the appointment ends, the dietitian will talk with you about follow-up appointments. Many people who see a dietitian regularly do better with their nutrition goals.
Yes, but a dietitian does not need to specialize in nutrition for Down syndrome. This is because nutrition for people with Down syndrome is similar to nutrition for people without Down syndrome.Many dietitians who specialize in nutrition for Down syndrome work in Down syndrome programs. They see patients as part of a medical team like your team at MassGeneral Hospital for Children.
Working with the dietitian is a good way to help you receive the best nutrition care. Here are a few tips on how you can work with the dietitian:
If you’d like to see a dietitian who specializes in nutrition for Down syndrome...We recommend Joan Medlen, MEd, RD, LDN. She is based in Oregon, but she can provide nutrition services at a distance that you pay for out-of-pocket. This means your insurance might not cover the distance nutrition services. Learn more about Joan’s distance nutrition services at www.downsyndromenutrition.com/services/
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