Holmesglen offers the HTL43015 Certificate IV in Allied Health Assistance with a specialist stream in nutrition and dietetics.
The role of a nutritionist is critical to the management of nutrition needs in allied health and community sectors such as hospitals and aged care centres. It’s the ideal qualification if you’re interested in working as an assistant to a healthcare specialist who uses nutrition to help patients manage specific conditions, or helps people change their lives through the power of nutrition.
As nutritionists are responsible for helping people improve their wellbeing, it scores highly in job satisfaction. According to a recent Seek survey, nutritionists gave their role a 4.8 out of 5, based on the personal rewards and important daily tasks the role entails, which attracts an average annual salary ranging from $65,000 to $75,000, according to the online jobs site.
What job opportunities are there allied health assistance?
Employment growth for this sector is predicted to increase over the next five years, according to the Australian Federal Government’s official Job Outlook.
And to address this growth in demand, the HLT43015 Certificate IV in Allied Health Assistance (Nutrition and dietetics) currently is offered as a Free TAFE course for eligible students.
Nutrition and dietician assistants are in demand, and actively contribute to helping Australians maintain a nutritious diet and healthy lifestyle.
Nutrition knowledge and standards are also important in the aged care sector.
Graduates not only have plenty of options to enter employment but also to undertake further study. Further study options offered by Holmesglen include the SIS50319 Diploma of Sport.
Meet Ann Brinkworth, graduate of HLT43015 Certificate IV in Allied Health Assistance (Nutrition and dietetics)
For former student Ann Brinkworth, a career change was the catalyst to explore her love of health and wellbeing and complete the course. She now works at Monash Health.
“I’ve always had an interest in nutrition, as I grow my own vegetables and herbs. I enjoy experimenting with new recipes and cooking,” says Ann.
At Holmesglen, the course is underpinned by four main learning components:
- nutrition theory
- hands-on food creation
- work experience in Holmesglen's Wellness Centre at the Glen Waverley campus
- practical placement.
What does an allied health assistance practical placement look like?
Allied health course practical placement can be at a range of health sector sites, including aged care facilities and hospitals. Ann chose to complete her practical placement at a hospital.
“I was under the guidance of a dietician initially, but I was also very lucky to work under the food services manager,” she says.
“Some of the work included gaining feedback from clients on food surveys, assisting with food delivery, and completing preparation and meal assistance. I really enjoyed it.”
What can you do with an allied health assistance course?
Ann now has an allied health assistant role. During her time at Holmesglen, Ann learned how to help people improve their nutrition and diet. She learned about nutritional needs, how the body metabolises food, and how to evaluate meal plans to meet individual needs.
“The course included discussing case studies, scenarios and reflective practice. We also conducted nutrition screening on real clients using a screening tool called MUST (Malnutrition Universal Screening Tool) at the Wellness Centre.”
“Take the opportunity to learn about topics such as nutrition, general health and safe work practices. It’s a great starting point for further studies in health and related fields.”
Ann’s advice for allied health assistance students
“Continue learning and gain as much experience as you can. It all counts when you start to apply for jobs. Realise the benefits of networking, such as maintaining contacts with your placements.”