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Iowa Board of Dietetics Reviews Telehealth for Dietitians

The Iowa Board of Dietetics is currently discussing the implications of telehealth services provided by Registered Dietitians in Iowa. At the September 21, 2018 meeting, Assistant Attorney General (AAG) Allison Schmidt spoke to the board concerning interstate licensure compacts, which was discussed at the Rules Committee meeting. She stated that a compact would require changes to the Iowa Code as the compact language is uniform and must be adopted verbatim by each state in the compact. She added that a compact proposal typically comes from the national association, with uniform Code language for adoption in every compact state.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is discussing a national licensure strategy or multi-state practices in relation to telehealth. However, this lack of standardized language of licensure laws among states makes it difficult. Schmidt also noted that if a legislative proposal is presented, the Board may be asked to provide comments. She stated the Board could look at telehealth for possible rulemaking. There was discussion of reciprocity agreements.

Mike Marshall, Bureau Chief stated that the individual states included in a reciprocity agreement would still charge applicant fees, and the benefit would be to streamline the licensure process. There was a comment that some states do not have a streamlined license process, which makes it more difficult for mobility. There was further discussion of a compact and the possible associated fees.

At the December 7, 2018 meeting, the Board reviewed the previous discussion from the September meeting and how the rules would address telehealth. Examples from psychological services and the practice of respiratory care practitioners and polysomnographic technologists were provided. These rules address type of software being used, HIPPA compliance, and licensure in the jurisdiction where the patient or client is located.

AAG Schmidt will review these rules and make recommendations to the Board concerning rule wording at the March 15, 2019 meeting.

Pat Hildebrand



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