How to become a Dietary Aide

Dietary Aide

Dietary aides assist dietitians to maintain high standards of nutritional care for patients in hospital settings.

Personal requirements for a Dietary Aide

  • Good communication skills
  • Enjoy working with people
  • Good organisational skills

Education & Training for a Dietary Aide

You can work as a dietary aide without formal qualifications. You will probably get some informal training on the job. Entry to this occupation may be improved if you have qualifications. You may like to consider a VET qualification. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information. You can also become a dietary aide through an apprenticeship or traineeship in Catering Operations or Allied Health Assistance. Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require Year 10.

Additional information

Students must be 18 years of age or older if undertaking modules that involve the service of alcohol.

Duties & Tasks of a Dietary Aide

Dietary aides:

  • Discuss the dietary needs of patients with healthcare professionals
  • Interview patients to discuss food preferences
  • Assist with the planning of menus for patients
  • Ensure food is hygienically and correctly prepared and well presented
  • Maintain diet records
  • Assist with the implementation of a nutrition care plan in consultation with dietitians
  • Assist with training staff to prepare and serve meals for patients with particular diets
  • Use computers for data entry and retrieval.


  • Providing nutrition assessments, nutrition management, and nutrition education, research and training
  • Monitoring food intake and quality to provide nutritional care
  • Planning diets and menus, and instructing people on the requirements and importance of diet and on the planning and preparation of food
  • Consulting with other Health Professionals and related workers to manage the dietary and nutritional needs of patients
  • Collecting, organising and assessing data relating to health and nutritional status of individuals, groups and communities
  • Supervising the preparation and serving of meals
  • Planning, conducting and evaluating nutrition intervention programs and compiling educational material
  • Calculating nutritional values of food served

Working conditions for a Dietary Aide

Dietary aides may be required to undertake rostered weekend work and shiftwork.

Employment Opportunities for a Dietary Aide

Dietary aides are employed in public and private hospitals, as well as in larger nursing homes. Demand depends on the general level of funding within the health system.


Dietary Aide

Dietary aides assist dietitians to maintain high standards of nutritional care for patients in hospital settings.

  • Average age
    Average age
    34 years
  • Future Growth
    Future Growth
    Very strong
  • Gender Share
    Gender Share
    94% female
  • Average full-time
    Average full-time
    42 hours
  • Weekly Pay
    Weekly Pay
  • Skill level rating
    Skill level rating
    Very high skill
  • Unemployment
    Lower unemployment
  • Full-Time Share
    Full-Time Share
    51% Full-Time
  • Employment Size
    Employment Size
    7,500 workers
  • Employment Size
    Employment by state
    ACT: 2.1%
    NSW: 33.9%
    NT: 1.3%
    QLD: 21.4%
    SA: 5.8%
    TAS: 1.7%
    VIC: 25.3%
    WA: 8.6%
  • Employment Size
    Age brackets
    15-19: 0.1%
    20-24: 7.2%
    25-34: 45.3%
    35-44: 24.5%
    45-54: 14.1%
    55-59: 4.6%
    60-64: 2.6%
    65 and Over: 1.6%
  • Employment Size
    Education level
    Advanced Diploma/Diploma: 4.1%
    Bachelor degree: 46.7%
    Certificate III/IV: 1.1%
    Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate: 46.5%
    Year 10 and below: 0.2%
    Year 11: 0.1%
    Year 12: 1.4%
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