There is a strong demand for dietitians and nutritionists to work in various areas such as health funds (Kupot Cholim), hospitals, clinics, elderly care facilities, etc.
If you haven’t completed your internship in your origin country you will not get a license in Israel. It is fairly challenging to find an internship in Dietetics in Israel, since there is a deficit of slots- also for Israeli graduates. It is highly recommended to complete the internship before you arrive in Israel.
Anyone applying to Ministry of Health (Misrad Habriut) for licensing in these professions is required to take an exam in order to be licensed in Israel.
Misrad Haklita offers a reimbursement (up to 500 NIS) for Olim who took the governmental licensing exam for medical professionals. Your eligibility lasts for 10 years from your date of Aliyah. The reimbursement is ONLY given retroactively and will be paid back ONLY after submitting the receipt for your exam to your local Misrad Haklita office. Please contact your local Misrad Haklita office for more information.
In order to take this licensing exam you must read through and sign this document: Declaration to Sign Before Taking Exam on a Tourist Visa
Misrad Habriut now offers a new customer call center to answer questions about licensing for health care professionals. Please call *5400 from Israel or 972-8-6241010 from abroad. The center operates Sunday through Thursday, 8 AM-6 PM, and Fridays from 8 AM-1 PM, Israel time.
Any dietitian wishing to work in Israel must be registered, and there is a mandatory exam which all dietitians must pass. The exam is only available after the candidate has completed an internship and has had his/her educational qualifications approved. There are full details about the exam on the Ministry of Health website.
The exam is held twice a year, in the format of 100 multiple choice questions. The pass mark is 60. The exam is currently offered in Hebrew, English & Spanish. Other languages may be available. There is a list of reading materials on the Ministry of Health website. The exam is free, and applications to take the exam must be submitted no later than two months prior to the exam date. The candidate must be present in Israel in order to take the exam.
This site provides practice questions (for a fee) that help dietitians prepare for the licensing exams.
Local Ministry of Health (Misrad Habriut) offices are no longer open. All applicants should submit all of your licensing documentation to Misrad Habriut via registered mail to:
Ministry of Health
The Chief Dietitian at the Ministry of Health is Ronit Endevelt. She can be contacted at email@example.com
Graduates who completed recognized academic degree programs in dietetics or nutrition in an institution recognized by the Council for Higher Education in Israel or in an institution abroad that is recognized by the Council, can submit a request for a professional license from the Ministry of Health.
The following documents must be included with the request:
- 2 passport pictures.
- A copy of your Teudat Zehut, including the Sefach (the appendix with your address). If you are applying pre-Aliyah, please submit a copy of your current passport with your application to Misrad Habriut.
- Final diploma or a certificate from the university indicating completion of studies, fulfillment of all of the university’s requirements and eligibility for a diploma in the relevant field, which will be granted at a specified date – requires verification* (see below).
- Official certification indicating the start and end date of studies – requires verification* (see below).
- Official certification of an internship (“stage”) indicating the number of hours that you completed. Dietitians and nutritionists must have completed at least 750 hours of internship.The greater the number of hours considered as part of your internship, the more likely it is that your licensing process will proceed smoothly. (If you did not complete an internship, please provide official certification about supervised work done in the field abroad, with a valid license, for at least one year) – requires verification* (see below).
- Official certifications of work experience, from the relevant medical institutions, indicating the start and end date of work in each institution – requires verification* (see below).
- Valid license – requires verification* (see below).
- A letter of good standing from the relevant authorities in the country that you made Aliyah from, proving that you never received complaints about discipline, negligence or professional ethics.
- An application form – Medical Licensing – Questionnaire. Please make sure to have your name written also in its Hebrew transliteration. In addition, you must provide with an ISRAELI address and cell phone# (can be of friends/family).
- An application requesting to be tested in the relevant field.
- Name change documentation, where relevant.
*For the documents who require verification, you have 3 verification options.
- Verified with an apostille after having the original document notarized (recommended).
- Bring it to an ISRAELI notary and have them notarize it.
- A verified copy (אימות העתק, Imut He’etek) at the Israeli consulate.
All documents must be submitted in two copies. You must submit the verified copy plus an additional photocopy of the original document. Always keep the originals for yourself, as well as a photocopy of the verified document.
It should be noted that some of the documents listed above are only valid for one year from their issuing date. If you have not submitted your Teudat Zehut (ID) within a year from opening your file with the Misrad Habriut, you may be required to present valid, re-issued documents in order to request your temporary license.
To receive a permanent license, you must submit all of your translated and notarized documents to Misrad Habriut. Misrad Habriut will then send you a permission form allowing you to take the licensing exam. Once you pass the exam you should receive your license in the mail. You may pay for your license online: Misrad Habriut Online Payment.
Misrad Habriut does not send a reminder indicating that your licensing is going to expire soon. As soon as you receive your license, please mark your calendar 12 weeks before the expiration date so that you receive your renewed license before the old one expires.
Each of the four health funds, Meuchedet, Macabbi, Clalit and Leumit has branches throughout the country. The differences between the health funds lie mainly in the location of their facilities, the types of supplemental policies offered, and additional services offered within the framework of their facilities. Most large cities have a clinic in almost every district. Dietitians either work in the Kupot, or work privately and accept Kupot members and get paid per treatment.
Additional Places of Employment
Gyms, sports clubs, & health clubs
Early Childhood Centers
Centers for Special Needs Children
Anyone who holds a license as a dietitian in Israel is entitled to open a private practice and set fees. When you have a private practice you can see patients on a strictly private basis.
All hospitals have dietitians on staff who work directly with patients. For new Olim, joining a hospital staff has a number of real advantages. You are working as part of a team of professional colleagues who can assist you while you are learning vocational and technical Hebrew terms, and teach you how to work within the Israeli system. This can be very important at the beginning and creates a much more supportive work environment than Kupot Cholim clinics or private practice settings, where you are working on your own with patients.
Each city employs one or more dietitians who work locally in the public sector in an educational and administrative capacity. Responsibilities include lecturing in local schools, working with girls performing National Service (Sherut Le’umi), visiting hospitals, and in general, ensuring that nutritional guidelines are enforced.
A good working knowledge of Hebrew is essential. It is strongly advised to study Hebrew before you arrive and then to take Ulpan upon arrival. For a full listing of Ulpan options, see the Ulpan Guide. Even where dietitians work entirely with English speakers, it is still necessary to deal with the various agencies that make up the Israeli medical network. When you first arrive in Israel, it is worthwhile shadowing an Israeli dietitian, or working with other dietitians in a hospital environment, as an opportunity to learn the technical language that you won’t necessarily gain in Ulpan.
In addition to regular Ulpan, Misrad HaKlita offers an ulpan for medical professionals – shlav bet. The class opens provided there are enough people who are interested. Be in touch with your local branch of Misrad HaKlita to find out when the next class will begin. For more information, see Medical Ulpan.
When you start looking for work, subscribe to local community email lists, where vacancies for dietitians are advertised or where you can post a description of the type of work you are looking for.
You can also join the national association of dietitians, ATID (Amuta L’Kidum Tezuna V’Dieta), and find out about vacancies that the organization is aware of. Contact them by phone at 03 529 8348 or on their website: www.atid-eatright.org.il/ .
One way to begin looking for work is to directly contact your local health funds or local hospitals and speak to the head dietitian.
It is also possible to turn to the government employment bureau for academics, known as the Bureau for the Placement of Professionals (Lishka Le Ta’asukat Acadama’im). The bureau can link holders of academic degrees with appropriate job openings. In Jerusalem, go to:
21 Rechov Yaffo (opposite Safra Square), Jerusalem
Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, 8:30 – 11:30 AM and 12:30 – 2:30 PM
Monday, Wednesday, 8:30 AM – 13:30 PM
Phone: 02 501 3100
*Etti and Bilha speak English.
For a full listing of Lishkat Taasuka locations throughout Israel, see: Lishkat Taasuka (Employment Office)
Finally, word of mouth is often one of the best sources of job leads. Don’t hesitate to let everyone you can know that you are seeking work, and follow up on any leads they may offer. Many positions are filled without ever being advertised.
If you intend to work in any public institution including hospitals, you must have all of your academic diplomas recognized by Misrad Hachinuch (Ministry of Education) for salary assessment purposes. When you work in a public institution, your salary is partially based on your level of education. See Recognition of Academic Degrees.
Thank you to Adina Samson & Rebecca Goldsmith for their contributions to this article.
This article was last updated on July 12, 2020.