President’s Message

Hi everyone,

I hope that you are all having a good September. It has been a great one so far for MS-AND. We held a virtual joint symposium with the Louisiana Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (LAND) on September 16th on Weight Management. There were a variety of speakers on topics that ranged from plant based nutrition, malnutrition, youth, and updates on obesity. We had 55 people to register from MS-AND, LAND, and across the country. We plan to do more of these virtual symposium, and hopefully incorporate more Gulf State affiliates in the planning process.

Ellen Ossorio, our MS-AND President-elect, and I are very excited about FNCE. MS-AND will host a reception after the education sessions wrap up on Sunday, October 9, 2022. We will be in the Peacock Spring Room (lobby level) of the Hyatt Regency Orlando from 4:30-5:30 p.m. It will be a great time to learn more about what the Mississippi Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics has planned. It will also be a great opportunity to meet other Mississippi registered dietitian nutritionists, dietetic interns, and students. The event is open to all. Click here to RSVP for this event!

We have also enjoyed taking a group photo at FNCE every year. Come join us right after the opening speaker on Sunday (10/8) by the FNCE sign. Here’s the picture from the last time FNCE was in person in 2019.

Ellen is working hard with the committees for the annual 2023 MS-AND conference that will be in Oxford on March 27-28th. Be on the lookout for a preliminary agenda soon.

In case you haven’t noticed, the MS-AND social media has really taken off. If you don’t already, please follow us using the handle @eatrightMS on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter. A BIG “Thank you” to Whitney Sheffield and Jessica Gamble for all your work on our social media! They are working with part of our Executive Team, Maya Arcilla, to stream line processes and grow our marketing and media efforts. We are working on plans to have a LinkedIn page too.

The regional coordinators are working hard to set up regional meetings this fall. Please see more information below.

Kyskie Bolton, the MS-AND Public Policy Coordinator, and I are working on some plans for policy days in early 2023 at the State Capitol. Look for more information on that to come this fall and winter. We will have calls for you to reach out to your local Mississippi senators and representatives in 2022 so we can establish relationships with them and be ready to have further conversations if we need to during the 2023 Mississippi legislative session.

I look forward to seeing many of you at FNCE and the regional meetings. 

Thank you to each of you for your hard work and dedication to our profession.

Sincerely,

Lydia

Lydia West, MPH, RDN, LD, SNS, President
Mississippi Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

Take Action with the Academy!

There are eight Calls to Action in the Academy’s Action Center. Please take a minute or two to fill these out:

  • Increase Fiscal Year 2023 allocations for the Dietary Guidelines for Americans
  • Child Nutrition Reauthorization Bill
  • Healthy Meals, Healthy Kids Act
  • Health Equity and Accountability Act
  • PUMP Act
  • Co-sponsor the School Food Service Modernization Act
  • Treat and Reduce Obesity Act
  • Expand Medicare MNT Coverage

Don’t forget that now the Academy also has a option for non-members to fill out the Action Alerts. Please pass this information on to your family, friends, and colleagues.

Join MS-AND at FNCE

MS-AND Gulf Coast Regional Meet Ups in October

Join the Gulf Coast Regional Coordinators at two socials in October:

  • October 13th at Seagrapes Wine Café in Gulfport
  • October 20th at Southern Prohibition in Hattiesburg 

Rsvp by emailing gulfcoastMSAND@gmail.com

Mississippi and Louisiana Academies of Nutrition and Dietetics Joint Virtual Symposium

Thank you to everyone who worked on the 2022 MS-AND and LAND Joint Virtual Symposium. It was a great success with attendees from all over the country. 

The planning committee included:

  • Martha Stevens, MS, RDN, LDN, LAND President
  • Erin McKinley, PhD, RD, LD, CLC, CHES, LAND President-elect
  • Carrie Kiley, MBA, Interim LAND Executive Director
  • Lindsay Mixon, RDN, LD, MS-AND Past President
  • Lydia West, MPH, RDN, LD, SNS, MS-AND President
  • Ellen Ossorio, MS, RND, LD, MS-AND President-elect
  • Rachel Kelleher, MS-AND Executive Director 

We look forward to future opportunities to coordinate with other affiliates.

Diabetes Medication Update

Join MS-AND’s very own Kathy Warwick, RDN, LDN, CDCES for a live webinar, “Diabetes Medication Update – Part 2 Injectable Diabetes Medications on September 22 from 12:00-1:00 p.m. Central Time. This will be a comprehensive review of injectable diabetes medications. 

White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition and Health

Join the Academy, Mississippi dietitians, and other food and nutrition professionals on Wednesday, September 28 for the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition and Health. 

The Academy began advocating in 2018 for a follow-up to the first White House Conference that was held in 1969, through meetings with members of Congress, supporting legislation and with White House officials. Part of the impetus for the 1969 conference was due to Senators Robert Kennedy and Joseph D Clark visit to Cleveland, Mississippi, a small town in the Delta, where they saw unexpected levels of poverty, hunger, and malnutrition.

Academy members provided feedback on important health and nutrition issues that should be addressed in the conference. The following priority recommendations from the Academy were submitted:

  1. Government and non-government entities should fully leverage the training and skills of nutrition and dietetics practitioners in all clinical and community settings.
  2. Ensure all Americans have access to quality nutrition care services.
  3. Invest in prevention and redesign the food and nutrition experience where Americans go to school, work and play.
  4. Fully fund the Dietary Guidelines for Americans process; fund research necessary to inform its recommendations; and provide translation of data and implementation strategies necessary to reach all Americans.
  5. Support efforts to strengthen and expand the federal nutrition programs.

Click here to read more about the Academy’s recommendations

Join Academy President Ellen R. Shanley, MBA, RDN, CDN, FAND, on Thursday, September 29, from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. (Central time) to discuss the outcomes and next steps from the 2022 White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition and Health. Click here to register for Ms. Shanley’s follow up discussion.

RDN Survey

Hello!

I am a fellow registered dietitian nutritionist and a researcher at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. I am conducting a new study and need your help.

The goal of this study is to determine if patients seen by a RDN through telehealth or in person have better health outcomes related to their chronic disease compared to patients who have not received medical nutrition therapy services by a RDN.

If we are able to demonstrate the effectiveness of medical nutrition therapy services provided by RDNs through cost savings and improved clinical outcomes for chronic disease patients, we can then petition for adequate and consistent reimbursement for medical nutrition therapy services.
Would you like to help? If so, you will be asked to complete a brief survey that may take 5 to 10 minutes of your time.

Click here to access the survey
Access code: JP7NH8LRM

Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. Thank you for your help and commitment to the profession!

Sincerely,
Elena Dent, PhD, MS, RDN, LDN, CDCESA
Assistant Professor
Department of Preventive Medicine
University of Mississippi Medical Center

Member Spotlight

Jane Boudreaux, PhD, RDN

Where did you study dietetics? Or where are you currently studying dietetics? 

University of Southern Mississippi; Texas Woman’s University, Denton, Texas

Where do you work currently?

Retired Professor – University of Southern Mississippi; Owner, Nutrition Systems, Inc. and Purchasing Alliance, LLC

What is something you’re passionate about outside of dietetics?

Our five grandchildren and RVing with my husband Fred

What is unique about you, your job, your career, or how you came into your career?

My career in dietetics changed as new opportunities became available. I started as a director of nutrition services for a small hospital. When the federal regulations for nursing homes added the requirement of a registered dietitian, I started a consulting company with just two RDs. Later this company was expanded when Lynn Carpenter Moore joined as a partner. Today this small company is known as Nutrition Systems and provides consulting services to approximately 300 clients and provides group purchasing services and menus to more than 300 clients. After working in consulting for several years, I had the opportunity to join the faculty of the University of Southern Mississippi. I had the pleasure to work with many dietetic students, a definite highlight of my career. After many years of teaching, I became an administrator at the University serving as Dean of the College of Health and Human Sciences. Following my retirement from USM, I worked the next 10 years in our consulting and purchasing companies. Today, I am an owner and member of the board of directors for our companies that employ approximately 50 RDs and 25 sales and support staff and provides services to clients in 10 states.

What is your favorite place in Mississippi?

My favorite place in Mississippi is Ocean Springs. This city has the “small town” feel but with lots of things to do and enjoy. When we are in Ocean Springs, my husband and I often say, “Now, this is a place I would like to live.”

What do you wish more people knew about dietetics/dietitians?

I wish that more people recognized the RDN as the nutrition expert. We have come a long way in getting this recognition, but we still have room for improvement. Additionally, I would like more people to recognize the broad skills that a RDN has developed that can be adapted to other related fields and to higher levels of management. Dietetic students should not limit their vision of job opportunities. When I was in college, I thought that I would be a clinical dietitian–guess what–I have not yet held that job title.

What social media accounts and/or website would you like us to link back to for you?

Nutrition Systems website and Purchasing Alliance website

Academy Updates

Academy Advocates for Increased Access to Underutilized Services 
In this year’s annual comments to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services on the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule, the Academy provided recommendations to increase beneficiary access to MNT, Diabetes Self-Management Training and Intensive Behavioral Therapy for obesity.

Additionally, the Academy urged CMS to make telehealth supervision flexibilities allowed under the PHE permanent as well as encouraged CMS to allow for trained Community Health Workers to support the delivery of a variety of services, including nutrition care.

Click here to read the Academy’s comments.

Nutrition and Dietetics State Advocacy Summit
The Academy’s inaugural Nutrition and Dietetics State Advocacy Summit take place on Wednesday, November 9 and Thursday, November 10 from 1-5:30 p.m. (Eastern Time) each day.

The virtual State Summit will assemble affiliate policy leaders and other member advocates from across the country for substantive and strategic professional development to help advance Academy and affiliate policy initiatives at the state level. 

The event will highlight why it is essential for the profession to be active on the state level, identify differences in federal and state government and advocacy, and help attendees become familiar with and utilize the Academy’s various resources to help affiliates build an action-oriented and effective public policy team. In addition, attendees will learn skills to help them take action following the pivotal 2022 elections that will decide many state legislative chambers. Click here to register.

 

Take Your Team to the Top

Are you interested in expanding your current staff or helping your employees advance themselves professionally? Incorporating DTRs into your clinical nutrition or food service management teams is a benefit to your existing professional staff as well as to your clients/customers. Commission on Dietetic Registration’s (CDR) has developed sample position/job descriptions for eight employment categories. Please review them to determine if hiring a DTR is right for your program: cdrnet.org/opportunities.

Individuals who have successfully completed either an associate degree and an Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) accredited Dietetic Technician (DT) program, or a bachelor’s degree and an ACEND accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) program, are eligible to take the registration examination for dietetic technicians without meeting additional academic or supervised practice requirements. Once credentialed, these individuals are required to comply with CDR’s professional development/ recertification requirements, the Code of Ethics for the Profession of Dietetics, and the Standards of Practice. For more information on pathways to DTR exam eligibility, please visit the CDR website.

If you have comments or questions about eligibility to take the registration examination for dietetic technicians, please contact cdrexams@eatright.org.

 

Update: Academy’s Efforts Regarding Aetna’s Mid-Level Practitioners Policy and Reimbursement
The Academy has been working with Aetna on changes to the company’s Mid-Level Practitioners policy, which had resulted in a 25% reduction in the fee schedule for RDNs The Academy recently held a successful meeting with Aetna executives in which the company decided to reverse its previous decision to reduce payment rates to RDNs, effective July 1 – a big win for the nutrition and dietetics profession. Read more here.

 

Advanced Practitioner in Clinical Nutrition (RD-AP or RDN-AP)
Move forward and obtain a credential that reflects your clinical nutrition experience and expertise New! Year-round Testing begins November 2022! More information is available on CDR’s website at the following link: https://www.cdrnet.org/board-certification-in-advanced-practice Questions? Please email advanced@eatright.org

 

Revised Standards of Practice and Standards of Professional Performance for RDNs in Public Health and Community Nutrition
The Revised 2022 Standards of Practice and Standards of Professional Performance for RDNs (Competent, Proficient, and Expert) in Public Health and Community Nutrition is now available in the September edition of the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Focus Area SOP and SOPP are tools used by RDNs for self-evaluation, professional development, and advancement of practice. The RDN document reflects changes impacting practice such as:

  • Social determinants of health
  • Population and global nutrition
  • New and updated resources
  • Updated Role Examples that include emerging areas such as Emergency Preparedness Practitioner

Learn more about the Standards of Practice at www.eatrightpro.org/sop.

Career Opportunities

Cura Hospitality at Rush Health Systems – Part Time Registered Dietitian

Register Dietitian 1 / Healthcare
Meridian, MS

The Registered Dietitian is responsible for providing professional dietetic services to patients, residents and facility employees at an assigned location. Duties of this position include, supervising all nutritional aspects of patient and resident care, which encompasses performing nutritional assessments, interviewing patients regarding food habits, and providing diet counseling to patients and families. The ideal candidate will hold a Bachelor’s or Master’s Degree from an accredited nutrition program and Registration by the American Dietetic Association. Preference may be given to candidates with previous healthcare work experience as a Dietitian or Assistant Food Service Director. This position requires standing, walking, and bending throughout the entire work day and the ability to lift, stack and maneuver objects that may weigh 30 to 50 pounds.

Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action/Minorities/Women/Individual with Disabilities/Protected Veteran Employer

For more information and to apply please visit: https://apply.jobappnetwork.com/clients/10935/posting/7798396/en#

 

Cura Hospitality at Eastern LA Mental Health Systems & Villa Feliciana Medical Center

Register Dietitian 1 / Healthcare
Jackson, LA

*This is a hybrid 3 days remote and 2 days onsite fulltime position. The facilities are a few minute drive apart.

The Registered Dietitian is responsible for providing professional dietetic services to patients, residents and facility employees at an assigned location. Duties of this position include, supervising all nutritional aspects of patient and resident care, which encompasses performing nutritional assessments, interviewing patients regarding food habits, and providing diet counseling to patients and families. The ideal candidate will hold a Bachelor’s or Master’s Degree from an accredited nutrition program and Registration by the American Dietetic Association. Preference may be given to candidates with previous healthcare work experience as a Dietitian or Assistant Food Service Director. This position requires standing, walking, and bending throughout the entire work day and the ability to lift, stack and maneuver objects that may weigh 30 to 50 pounds.

Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action/Minorities/Women/Individual with Disabilities/Protected Veteran Employer

For more information and to apply please visit:
https://apply.jobappnetwork.com/clients/10935/posting/7772285/en