Establishes dietitian licensing program in DCCA.

THE SENATE                              S.B. NO.           509
TWENTIETH LEGISLATURE, 1999                                
STATE OF HAWAII                                            

                     A BILL FOR AN ACT



 1      SECTION 1.  The legislature finds that nutrition plays a
 2 critical role in growth and brain development, in the prevention
 3 of diseases such as cancer, in the control and treatment of many
 4 diseases including atherosclerosis and diabetes, and in the
 5 attainment and maintenance of health.  At the same time that
 6 there is a growing awareness of the relationship between sound
 7 nutrition and the state of individual as well as community
 8 health, there has been a virtual explosion in the amount of
 9 information that is being made available to the public about
10 nutrition practice.  Unfortunately, but understandably, much of
11 this information is contradictory and confusing.  In addition,
12 much of this information is also misleading and, when followed,
13 can actually lead to the undermining of a person's health rather
14 than its improvement.
15      The legislature also finds that there has been a substantial
16 growth in the amount of quackery that is coming into our
17 community because of the growing awareness of the importance of
18 nutrition.  While there is applicable federal legislation in this
19 area, a licensure program by the State can identify for the

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 1 public those persons who have, by training and examination,
 2 demonstrated a basic understanding of sound, scientifically based
 3 nutrition principles.  A licensure program that establishes title
 4 protection for dietitians will allow members of the public and
 5 allied health professions to be aware of and to be able to obtain
 6 the services of these qualified persons.
 7      The purpose of this Act is to establish a licensure program
 8 for dietitians, within the department of commerce and consumer
 9 affairs.
10      SECTION 2.  The Hawaii Revised Statutes is amended by adding
11 a new chapter to be appropriately designated and to read as
12 follows:
13                             "CHAPTER
14                            DIETITIANS
15         -1  Definitions.  As used in this chapter, unless the
16 context otherwise requires, the term:
17      "Association" means the American Dietetic Association.
18      "Department" means the department of commerce and consumer
19 affairs.
20      "Director" means the director of commerce and consumer
21 affairs.
22      "Dietitian" means a person who has been issued a license
23 under this chapter to engage in the practice of nutrition, which

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 1 may include, but is not limited to, the provision of medical
 2 nutrition therapy.
 3      "Medical nutrition therapy" means specific medical nutrition
 4 therapies and treatment modalities based on clinical scientific
 5 research and practice that are used to treat illness, conditions,
 6 and injuries.  Medical nutrition therapy includes clinical
 7 nutrition assessment, diet modification, intensive intervention,
 8 and the administration of specialized nutrition therapies.
 9       -2 Dietitian licensing program.  There is established a
10 dietitian licensing program within the department to be
11 administered by the director.
12       -3 Powers and duties of the director.  In addition to
13 any other powers and duties authorized by law, the director shall
14 have the following powers and duties:
15      (1)  Examine and approve the qualifications of all
16           applicants under this chapter and issue a license to
17           each successful applicant granting permission to use
18           the title of dietitian in this State pursuant to this
19           chapter and the rules adopted under this chapter;
20      (2)  Adopt, amend, or repeal rules pursuant to chapter 91;
21      (3)  Administer, coordinate, and enforce this chapter and
22           the rules adopted pursuant thereto;
23      (4)  Discipline a person licensed as a dietitian for any

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 1           cause under this chapter or for any rule violation,
 2           fine any licensed dietitian for any cause under this
 3           chapter, or refuse to license a person for failure to
 4           meet the licensing requirements or for any cause that
 5           would be grounds for disciplining a licensed dietitian;
 6           and
 7      (5)  Appoint an advisory committee consisting of licensed
 8           dietitians and members of the public to assist with the
 9           implementation of this chapter; provided that the
10           initial members of the advisory committee who are
11           dietitians shall be exempt from the licensing
12           requirement; and provided further that a majority of
13           the members of the committee shall be licensed
14           dietitians.
15       -4 Fees; disposition.(a)  Application, license,
16 renewal, penalty fees, and other fees relating to the
17 administration of this chapter, none of which may be refunded,
18 shall be as provided in rules adopted pursuant to chapter 91.
19      (b)  The fees assessed shall defray all costs incurred to
20 support the operation of the dietitian licensing program.  All
21 fees collected shall be managed in accordance with section 26-
22 9(1).
23       -5 Entitlement.  No person shall purport to be a

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 1 "dietitian" or "licensed dietitian", or use the letters "L.D." in
 2 connection with the person's name, or use any words or symbols
 3 indicating or tending to indicate that the person is a dietitian
 4 or licensed dietitian without meeting the applicable requirements
 5 and holding a license pursuant to this chapter.
 6       -6 License requirements.(a)  An applicant for a
 7 license as a dietitian shall:
 8      (1)  Submit an application on a form prescribed by the
 9           director;
10      (2)  Furnish satisfactory evidence of meeting the following
11           requirements:
12           (A)  Completion of a didactic program in dietetics
13                which is approved or accredited by the Commission
14                on Accreditation/Approval for Dietetic Education
15                and a minimum of a baccalaureate degree from a
16                college or university recognized by the United
17                States Department of Education.  Applicants who
18                have obtained their education outside of the
19                United States and its territories must have their
20                academic degrees validated as equivalent to the
21                baccalaureate or master's degree conferred by a
22                regionally accredited college or university in the
23                United States.  Validation of a foreign degree

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 1                does not eliminate the need for a verification
 2                statement of completion of a didactic program in
 3                dietetics;
 4           (B)  Completion of a supervised practice requirement
 5                from an institution certified by a nationally
 6                recognized professional organization as having a
 7                dietetics specialty;
 8           (C)  Passing of a national examination administered by
 9                the Commission on Dietetic Registration, the
10                credentialing agency for the American Dietetic
11                Association; and
12           (D)  Submission of a report of any disciplinary action
13                relating to nutrition practice taken against the
14                applicant in another jurisdiction.
15       -7 Licensure by endorsement.  The director shall grant,
16 upon application and payment of proper fees, a license to a
17 person who, at the time of application, holds a valid license as
18 a dietitian issued by another state, territory, or jurisdiction
19 if the requirements for that license are equal to, or greater
20 than, the requirements of this chapter.
21       -8 Issuance of license.  The director shall issue a
22 license to any person who meets all licensure requirements and
23 pays the appropriate fees.

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 1       -9 Renewal of license.  Licenses shall be renewed
 2 triennially on or before December 31, with the first renewal
 3 deadline occurring on December 31, 2003.  Failure to renew a
 4 license shall result in a forfeiture of the license.  Licenses
 5 which have been forfeited may be restored within one year of the
 6 expiration date upon payment of renewal and restoration fees.
 7 Failure to restore a forfeited license within one year of the
 8 date of its expiration shall result in the automatic termination
 9 of the license.  Persons with terminated licenses shall be
10 required to reapply for licensure as a new applicant.
11       -10  Revocation, suspension, denial, or condition of
12 licenses; fines.(a)  In addition to any other actions
13 authorized by law, the director may deny, revoke, limit, suspend,
14 or refuse to renew any license granted pursuant to this chapter.
15 The director may fine or otherwise discipline a licensee for any
16 one or any combination of the following causes:
17      (1)  Conviction by a court of competent jurisdiction of a
18           crime which the director has determined, by rules
19           adopted pursuant to chapter 91, to be of a nature that
20           renders the person convicted unfit to practice
21           nutrition;
22      (2)  Failing to report in writing to the director any
23           disciplinary decision related to nutrition practice

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 1           issued against the licensee or the applicant in any
 2           jurisdiction within thirty days of the disciplinary
 3           decision or within twenty days of licensure;
 4      (3)  Violation of recognized ethical standards for
 5           dietitians as set by the Association;
 6      (4)  Use of fraud, deception, or misrepresentation in
 7           obtaining a license;
 8      (5)  Revocation, suspension, or other disciplinary action by
 9           another state, territory, federal agency, or country
10           against a licensee or applicant for any reason provided
11           under this section; or
12      (6)  Other just and sufficient cause which renders a person
13           unfit to practice nutrition.
14       -11  Prohibited acts; penalties.(a)  No person shall:
15      (1)  Use in connection with the person's name any
16           designation tending to imply that the person is a
17           licensed dietitian unless the person is duly licensed
18           and authorized under this chapter;
19      (2)  Represent oneself as a licensed dietitian during the
20           time the person's license issued under this chapter has
21           been forfeited, terminated, suspended, or revoked; or
22      (3)  Otherwise violate this chapter.
23      (b)  Any person who violates this section shall be subject

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 1 to a fine of not more than $1,000 per violation."
 2      SECTION 3.  This Act shall take effect on January 1, 2000.
 5                           INTRODUCED BY:  _______________________