Certification FAQ
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Certified Dietitian
In 1995, the State of Wisconsin passed legislation to certify qualified nutrition providers. The state credential assures consumers that Certified Dietitians (CD) provide nutrition services that meet established professional standards, and that only those legally qualified may use the term CD. Training and education are very similar to that for a Registered Dietitian.

Wisconsin Dietitian's Affiliated Credentialing Board Home page
Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services Credential look-up

Wisconsin Statutes and Code
Copies of the Dietitians Statutes and Administrative Code can be seen on the webpage: Click Here

How to become a Certified Dietitian:

Taken from: 448.78 Certification of dietitians.

The affiliated credentialing board shall grant a certificate as a dietitian to an individual who does all of the following:

(1) Submits an application for the certificate to the department on a form provided by the department.
(2) Pays the fee specified in s. 440.05 (1).
(3) Submits evidence satisfactory to the affiliated credentialing board that he or she has 448.78(3)(a) received a bachelor's, master's or doctoral degree in human nutrition, or other approved nutrition program as determined by the affiliated credentialing board
(4) Submits evidence satisfactory to the affiliated credentialing board that he or she has completed at least 900 hours of approved dietetics practice
(5) Passes the registration examination for dietitians established by the commission on dietetic registration of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, or passes an equivalent examination approved by the affiliated credentialing board, and held under s. 448.84, to determine fitness to practice dietetics.

The Nuts and Bolts of Certification in Wisconsin
From the Wisconsin Dietitians Affiliated Credentialing Board
Reviewed by DACB-August 2010, updated Jan 2011

There are several facts about professional regulation that members of WAND need to know. There are facts about professional regulation that non-members of WAND who are Registered Dietitians need to know. Who needs to be certified, how to become certified whether a new graduate or a seasoned practitioner moving from another state, who needs a temporary certificate and how to complete any of these tasks are necessary facts that all nutrition practitioners need to know.

Who needs to be certified?

  • Any nutrition practitioner who is providing medical nutrition therapy (MNT) and billing for their services under Medicare Part B must be certified in order to obtain a provider number. It is not at all unlikely if you are a provider billing for your services to private insurance or managed care providers that they would require (and provide payment to) professionals that are regulated by the state in which they are practicing.
  • A Wisconsin public health nutritionist must be a certified dietitian, as defined in s. 448.70 (1m),be credentialed as a registered dietitian by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR), and meet qualifications that the department shall specify by rule.
  • A Wisconsin dietitian in long term care. Based on DHS 132.13(5) dietitians in long term care must be either certified under Wisconsin 448.78 Statute or licensed or certified as a dietitian under another state.
  • A dietitian who works for an employer who requires WI certification as part of their job description.

From a professional standpoint would you want to utilize the services of a health care provider who is not regulated by your state?

How do you become certified?
The first step is to apply. The Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS) provides everything you need to apply. For the new graduate, the application process should be done in conjunction with the application to take the Registration exam. Hopefully, advisors in internship programs are familiar with this process and can assist new graduates. If you are a currently Registered Dietitian moving to Wisconsin from another state that is regulated, you can apply for Certification under reciprocity. If you are a Registered Dietitian who has never been certified or licensed in Wisconsin or another state, you need to complete an application, but you do not have to retake the registration exam. Your application will be reviewed to assure it meets the criteria for certification (education, training and Registration with the Commission on Dietetic Registration). Those who are not certified but would have qualified under the grandfather clause will need to take the Registration exam in order to become certified.

Who needs a temporary certificate?
Anyone billing Medicare for Part B nutrition services must have a provider number and must hold a credential (that is, in Wisconsin, be a Certified Dietitian). Many employers require that you either are credentialed or have applied for certification. Whether you need a temporary certificate should be clarified by the employer in these circumstances.

How do I complete these tasks?
To obtain the needed forms, contact the Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS). This can be done by U.S. mail, telephone or by logging onto the department’s website.

Additional Notes
Like all departments in the state, the Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS) is faced with budget constraints in the coming fiscal year. In addition, changes in gubernatorial leadership have changed the charge that state agencies will employ. If a person has applied for any credentials from the department, progress on granting that credential is available on line at the Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS) website. If questions remain individuals should contact the department directly for further information.

The Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS) continues to enforce the practice codes for professional regulation with the intent of protecting the public from harm. It continues to belong to the public of the state of Wisconsin and will respond to the public when public requests are made. Questions that arise regarding professional certification should be directed to the Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS) for clarification.

Contact Information
To apply for certification or if you have questions about your status, please contact:

Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS)

P.O. Box 8935
Madison, WI 53708
Telephone:(608) 266-2811

The website serves as the primary vehicle to obtain a license application, get a complaint form, or monitor discipline decisions by the licensing boards or the department. The website also provides links to other state agencies and various professional associations. Other information that can be obtained from the website includes: schedules of board meetings and hearings, board meeting minutes, newsletters, a schedule of events and activities updated daily, license application status, consumer information, and listings of education and exam providers. Credential holders are now able to change their address information on-line - a service that has been requested by licensees for many years.