Health professionals are often asked by their patients and families about the benefits and risks of fish consumption. Conflicting media messages about health risks and benefits related to fish consumption, coupled with limited health professional training, has led to confusion by health professionals about advising patients and families about safe fish consumption. Building health professional capacity, fish consumption, and health effects is a collaborative effort between environmental, medical and nursing experts from across the country to develop an educational series for busy health professionals about the risks and benefits of fish consumption. This effort, informed through focus groups comprised of experts in the field, resulted in the development of a series of educational media modules entitled Fish Facts for Health Professionals. This media series comprised of four, 3-5 minute media modules was designed for busy health professionals that are interested in learning more about the risks and benefits of fish consumption and methylmercury (MeHg) exposure.
This initiative was funded through the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Thanks to the many environmental health and health professionals who advised the development of the media modules through their participation in the focus groups or review of the product. This work is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Kate Mahaffey, a leader in the effort to reduce health risks related to methylmercury exposure and a participant in the focus groups.