Code of Ethics for the Profession of Dietetics

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CODE OF ETHICS FOR THE PROFESSION OF DIETETICS

American Dietetic Association

1987, revised 1999

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The current Code of Ethics for the Profession of Dietetics was adopted by the American Dietetic Association (ADA) in 1999. Whereas most professional codes apply only to members of the authoring organization, the ADA code applies both to members of the ADA and to nonmembers who are credentialed as "registered dieticians" (RDs) or "dietetictechnicians, registered" (DTRs) by the Commission on Dietetic Registration, the ADA's credentialing agency. Certain provisions, however, apply only to one group or the other. The code is supplemented by a detailed Consideration of Ethics Issues which outlines how ethics cases will be handled.

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Principles

  • 1. The dietetics practitioner conducts himself/herself with honesty, integrity, and fairness.
  • 2. The dietetics practitioner practices dietetics based on scientific principles and current information.
  • 3. The dietetics practitioner presents substantiated information and interprets controversial information without personal bias, recognizing that legitimate differences of opinion exist.
  • 4. The dietetics practitioner assumes responsibility and accountability for personal competence in practice, continually striving to increase professional knowledge and skills and to apply them in practice.
  • 5. The dietetics practitioner recognizes and exercises professional judgment within the limits of his/her qualifications and collaborates with others, seeks counsel, or makes referrals as appropriate.
  • 6. The dietetics practitioner provides sufficient information to enable clients and others to make their own informed decisions.
  • 7. The dietetics practitioner protects confidential information and makes full disclosure about any limitations on his/her ability to guarantee full confidentiality.
  • 8. The dietetics practitioner provides professional services with objectivity and with respect for the unique needs and values of individuals.
  • 9. The dietetics practitioner provides professional services in a manner that is sensitive to cultural differences and does not discriminate against others on the basis of race, ethnicity, creed, religion, disability, sex, age, sexual orientation, or national origin.
  • 10. The dietetics practitioner does not engage in sexual harassment in connection with professional practice.
  • 11. The dietetics practitioner provides objective evaluations of performance for employees and coworkers, candidates for employment, students, professional association memberships, awards, or scholarships. The dietetics practitioner makes all reasonable effort to avoid bias in any kind of professional evaluation of others.
  • 12. The dietetics practitioner is alert to situations that might cause a conflict of interest or have the appearance of a conflict. The dietetics practitioner provides full disclosure when a real or potential conflict of interest arises.
  • 13. The dietetics practitioner who wishes to inform the public and colleagues of his/her services does so by using factual information. The dietetics practitioner does not advertise in a false or misleading manner.
  • 14. The dietetics practitioner promotes or endorses products in a manner that is neither false nor misleading.
  • 15. The dietetics practitioner permits the use of his/her name for the purpose of certifying that dietetics services have been rendered only if he/she has provided or supervised the provision of those services.
  • 16. The dietetics practitioner accurately presents professional qualifications and credentials.
  • a. The dietetics practitioner uses Commission on Dietetic Registration awarded credentials ("RD" or "Registered Dietitian"; "DTR" or "Dietetic Technician, Registered"; "CSP" or "Certified Specialist in Pediatric Nutrition"; "CSR" or "Certified Specialist in Renal Nutrition"; and "FADA" or "Fellow of The American Dietetic Association") only when the credential is current and authorized by the Commission on Dietetic Registration. The dietetics practitioner provides accurate information and complies with all requirements of the Commission on Dietetic Registration program in which he/she is seeking initial or continued credentials from the Commission on Dietetic Registration.
  • b. The dietetics practitioner is subject to disciplinary action for aiding another person in violating any Commission on Dietetic Registration requirements or aiding another person in representing himself/herself as Commission on Dietetic Registration credentialed when he/she is not.
  • 17. The dietetics practitioner withdraws from professional practice under the following circumstances:
  • a. The dietetics practitioner has engaged in any substance abuse that could affect his/her practice;
  • b. The dietetics practitioner has been adjudged by a court to be mentally incompetent;
  • c. The dietetics practitioner has an emotional or mental disability that affects his/her practice in a manner that could harm the client or others.
  • 18. The dietetics practitioner complies with all applicable laws and regulations concerning the profession and is subject to disciplinary action under the following circumstances:
  • a. The dietetics practitioner has been convicted of a crime under the laws of the United States which is a felony or a misdemeanor, an essential element of which is dishonesty, and which is related to the practice of the profession.
  • b. The dietetics practitioner has been disciplined by a state, and at least one of the grounds for the discipline is the same or substantially equivalent to these principles.
  • c. The dietetics practitioner has committed an act of misfeasance or malfeasance which is directly related to the practice of the profession as determined by a court of competent jurisdiction, a licensing board, or an agency of a governmental body.
  • 19. The dietetics practitioner supports and promotes high standards of professional practice. The dietetics practitioner accepts the obligation to protect clients, the public, and the profession by upholding the Code of Ethics for the Profession of Dietetics and by reporting alleged violations of the Code through the defined review process of The American Dietetic Association and its credentialing agency, the Commission on Dietetic Registration.