What is Medical Nutrition Therapy?

What is Medical Nutrition Therapy?

Medical nutrition therapy, also called MNT, is a science-based process meant to help people who have a medical condition that may be helped by making nutritional changes.  It also is useful in helping people prevent further complications and future diseases.  MNT can take place in a hospital, private practice, or even via telehealth services.  Often times, MNT is prescribed by a physician, but other times, individuals seek out a nutritionist or dietician on their own.


What Happens During an MNT Appointment?

Your nutrition professional will review your diagnosis and health history with to and will determine what nutritional changes are necessary to support your body’s journey back towards health.  Your nutritionist or dietician may also recommend nutritional supplements, like vitamins, minerals, plant products, herbs, probiotics, and other natural substances.  You’ll leave with a Care Plan that includes how to successfully implement those changes into your everyday life, and how to make health a lifestyle habit instead of a short-term fix.

Some people may only need one MNT session, but most people will need one or more follow-up sessions.  Typically, you see a nutritionist for MNT  as long as your diagnosis is current.  This means you may need to see your dietician or nutritionist on and off for many years, or even a lifetime – even after you think you’ve mastered the things you need to know to take control of your health.  Think of your appointment with a nutritionist the same as your appointment with your doctor.  When you have major issues, you probably see the doctor more often.  When your issues subside or aren’t as acute, you may not see your doctor as often, but you’ll still go every 6 months to a year for check-ups and preventive measures.  Nutritionists and dieticians are not physicians, but they are just as important to continued health and wellness!


Who Is Qualified to Provide MNT Services?

While laws differ from state-to-state, MNT can generally only be provided by a licensed nutritionist or a registered dietician.  In addition, the practitioner must be licensed in the state in which you live, even if you are participating in telehealth services.  Nurses, physicians, fitness trainers, and health coaches are not qualified to provide nutritional counseling unless they have additional licensure and/or certifications in clinical nutrition.


Will My Insurance Cover MNT?

Most insurance policies cover MNT, but this will often depend on whether or not you have a condition that justifies their coverage.  For example, if you’re a person that wants to learn about healthy eating, but are in good health, your claim will likely be denied.  This doesn’t mean that you can’t schedule an MNT appointment, but it does mean you’ll probably have to pay for the full cost of the service out-of-pocket.  Someone in this example will likely be better served through our Nutrition & Health Coaching Services.


If you have a condition that has been diagnosed and documented by your physician, and your insurance covers MNT (sometimes referred to as nutritional counseling by insurance companies), you will probably be covered.  Conditions such as diabetes, obesity, multiple sclerosis, or depression, are often covered by insurance policies for MNT, but coverage varies from network-to-network.  Always contact your provider beforehand to determine if your diagnosis is qualified for MNT coverage.


Does Ford Wellness Accept Insurance as Payment for MNT?

Ford Wellness is an Anthem provider.  This means that we accept all Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield policies.  What this doesn’t mean is that your specific policy will cover you.  Sometimes you need a referral in order to be covered.  Sometimes your insurance may cover part, but not all of our fees.  Sometimes you will be covered as long as you pay a co-pay.  And other times, you aren’t covered until you’ve paid a certain deductible amount for the year.  Sometimes your particular policy won’t cover MNT at all.  All policies are different, so it’s important to call them before you schedule with us so that you can be informed about your potential financial obligations.

You may have an insurance policy that covers MNT, but if your policy isn’t an Anthem company, our services may be considered “out-of-network” for you.   If that applies to you, another option we have available is called “Superbills.”  Superbills are fancy itemized receipts that we provide specifically for cases like this, and they are designed for insurance companies. So, in a case like this, you would initially pay for your appointment with us out-of-pocket.  But after your appointment, we can provide a “superbill” to you that you can submit to your own insurance company for reimbursement.


How Do Payments Work for MNT?

At Ford Wellness, we collect a non-refundable $50 deposit when scheduling your first appointment.  After your appointment is scheduled, we’ll gather your insurance information, assess any out-of-pocket costs you may be responsible for, and we’ll contact you to let you know.  Your $50 deposit may be applied to your co-pay amount or any remaining balance after your insurance company has sent payment to Ford Wellness for the services provided to you.  If your insurance company does not cover our services, or if they only cover a portion of them, you will be responsible for paying the remaining balance at the time of your appointment.  At follow-up appointments, we’ll already have your insurance coverage established, so no further deposits will be necessary.


How Do I Schedule an Appointment for MNT?

If you’ve never had an MNT appointment with us, simply scroll down below and click the continue button to schedule your appointment. You’ll be able to pay and schedule all at once.

If you’ve seen us for MNT before, you can contact your practitioner directly or call 1-240-802-6080