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Community nutrition and dietetics: a survey of nutrition group members in 1995

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In 1995 the Community Nutrition Group (CNG) of the British Dietetic Association (BDA) celebrated its 21st birthday. Enormous development in community nutrition and dietetics has taken place in these 21 years. Membership of the CNG now stands at 493, representing 12% of the membership of the BDA. In December 1995 a questionnaire was sent to all members of the CNG, of whom 73% completed the questionnaire. Information collected included work structures; aspects of work which had increased or decreased during the past 5 years and the proportion of time allocated to specific community nutrition activities. The results show that there has been an increase in the number of dietitians working in the community (average reported increase of 1.78 whole time equivalents). The main area of growth has been in all aspects of primary care (clinical, health promotion and training). Other areas of growth include community clinical work, training, health promotion and community development. The concern that the nutrition facilitation role of the dietitian in the community is being dominated by clinical work is not supported; 51% of CNG membersĀ» time is spent in nutrition facilitation, 37% in clinical work. Dietitians working in the community must continue to work to demonstrate the effectiveness of their nutrition facilitation role to secure continued funding.

Keywords: clinical; community; dietetic; nutrition facilitation; primary care

Document Type: Original Article


Affiliations: 1: Human Nutrition Research Centre, University of Newcastle 2: Health Education Authority, Oxford, UK

Publication date: January 1, 1996


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