Occ. Code 3101050





New York State Department of Civil Service


Classification Standard




Dietitian Technicians assist professional dietitians in the operation of a food service department in a State facility which provides health care services. Incumbents perform a variety of standardized, nutritional care tasks to assure that patients receive proper nutrition and appropriate diets as prescribed by a physician.


Dietitian Technicians are classified in facilities of the Office of Mental Health, the Office of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities and the Department of Health.




Dietitian Technicians assist professional dietitians by performing standardized nutritional care tasks such as summarizing and maintaining records of patients' diets, providing information on diets and food preparation to patients and their families, and consulting with facility staff regarding changes in patients' diets. They perform some tasks which are similar to those performed by Dietitians; however, these tasks are performed under the guidance and direction of a Dietitian or Nutrition Services Administrator.


Dietitians are characterized by their performance of a full range of professional dietetic activities, planning and supervising the preparation of special diets and menus, supervising the service of food to dining rooms and wards, and assuring that sanitary conditions in food service operations are maintained.  Nutrition Services Administrators in a facility providing 1,500 or more meals per day, assist an Institution Food Administrator in the organization and administration of food service operations by coordinating all dietetic services, or, in a facility providing less than 1,500 meals per day, have responsibility for directing and administering all food service operations.


Cooks prepare and cook a variety of foods including special foods for diets and frequently supervise kitchen staff in the storage, preparation, cooking and dispensing of food and the cleaning and sanitizing of kitchen facilities, utensils, and equipment. Food Service Workers 2 serve as working supervisors over a number of Food Service Workers 1 involved in serving food and also perform certain food preparation duties such as preparing and cooking meat, fish, vegetables, and desserts.




Prepares and maintains patients' dietary histories as part of their nutritional care and overall treatment plans.


-         Records current diet plans prescribed by the physician as well as modified diet orders written by the physician.


-         Regularly prepares a census showing the number of patients under each diet plan available.


-         Records patients' reactions to certain foods and special diets after observing patients at mealtimes, questioning the patients and obtaining information from other food service staff or clinical staff.


-         Reviews patients' dietary records and enters dietary information required on patients' treatment plans, indicating the type of diet plan and how it was implemented.


-         Periodically abstracts information from patients' dietary records and enters the information on patients' medical records.


Assists professional dietitians in providing patients with proper nutrition and special diets.


-         Assures that food is properly prepared and served in accordance with established standards by checking portions and diets served to patients and checking food for consistency, temperature and appearance.


-         Observes patients' eating habits, giving particular attention to unusual eating habits, rate of eating and acceptance of the diet and/or restrictions, and reports any difficulties to appropriate treatment staff.


-         Inspects kitchen, dining rooms and serving areas for compliance with appropriate sanitary standards and reports problems to supervisor.


-         Prepares orders and requisitions for food service supplies for the supervisor's review, checks incoming food supplies for quality, condition and compliance with specifications and maintains inventories.


-         As needed, supervises kitchen and dining room staff in the preparation, handling and serving of food.


-         May make food substitutions on occasions when patients are unable to eat a particular food item that is part of the daily menu.


-         May assist Dietitians in planning and making arrangements for holiday and other special eating experiences.


-         May assist Dietitians in implementing and monitoring individual weight control programs prescribed by physicians.


Within the context of the prescribed diet plan and taking information from a diet manual, provides dietary and nutritional information to facility staff, community based staff and to patients and their families.


-         Consults with treatment staff regarding changes in patients' diets, and nutritional goals for patients and supplies treatment staff with nutritional information and diet plans for patients who are about to be discharged from the facility.


-         May advise physicians on the availability of diet plans listed in the facility's diet manual.


-         Advises patients, their families, family caretakers, or community treatment staff on appropriate diets and preparation of food.




Dietitian Technicians have frequent work contacts with other food service staff, with patients, their families or family caretakers and with treatment and direct care staff. These relationships mainly involve oral communications for the purpose of giving or obtaining information on food preferences, special diets and basic nutrition, and answering questions and providing advice in nutritional areas.




Dietitian Technicians are supervised by a Dietitian or Nutrition Services Administrator who provides guidance and assistance as well as specific instruction when needed. Many of the tasks assigned to Dietitian Technicians are performed independent of direct supervision; however, the performance of these tasks is checked periodically for quality by the supervisor.


Dietitian Technicians may supervise kitchen and food service staff by providing advice and guidance in the preparation and serving of food including special diets, and in the implementation of sanitary standards in food service operations.




-         Basic knowledge of the science of nutrition sufficient to provide standard nutritional care to patients.


-         Basic knowledge of the food requirements of individuals based on their physical condition, degree of disability, age and sex.


-         Basic knowledge of the methods, materials and equipment used in an institutional food service operation.


-         Working knowledge of facility food service safety and sanitation standards for food storage, preparation and serving.


-         Ability to comprehend, interpret and apply proper standards of cleanliness, sanitation and safety in relation to the storage, preparation and serving of food.


-         Ability to communicate advice and instructions concerning proper diets and general nutrition to food service staff and to patients and their families.


-         Ability to prepare and maintain accurate, standard dietary records and reports.




Satisfactory completion of an approved two‑year full‑time course in the field of dietetics with emphasis on nutritional care or food service management.




Reviewed:  10/04



NOTE:  Classification Standards illustrate the nature, extent and scope of duties and responsibilities of the classes they describe.  Standards cannot and do not include all of the work that might be appropriately performed by a class.  The minimum qualifications above are those which were required for appointment at the time the Classification Standard was written.  Please contact the Division of Staffing Services for current information on minimum qualification requirements for appointment or examination.