Recognizing Waterborne Disease
 and The Health Effects of Water Pollution
Patricia L. Meinhardt, MD, MPH, MA, Author



Certified, American Board of Preventive Medicine
Certified, American Board of Independent Medical Examiners



Patricia L. Meinhardt, MD, MPH, MA has been diagnosing and treating occupational and environmental illness and injury since 1989. Dr. Meinhardt is an occupational and environmental medicine specialist with advanced training as a physician-epidemiologist. She has significant expertise and experience in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of water-related disease resulting from biological, chemical, and radiologic exposure. She has monitored thousands of patients for the possible health effects associated with exposure to a diverse array of biological and chemical agents in both occupational and environmental settings. Dr. Meinhardt has also provided waterborne disease recognition and medical management training to thousands of medical and public health practitioners in the United States (US) and abroad. Most recently, Dr. Meinhardt presented the keynote address at the Global Conference on Microbial Contaminates in Drinking Water sponsored by Singapore Government. She has provided medical preparedness training addressing water contamination emergencies at the request of the Institute of Water Officers in London, England and The World Water Organization at the United Nations in New York City.

Dr. Meinhardt received board certification from the American Board of Preventive Medicine and the American Board of Independent Medical Examiners. She completed her medical training at the Medical College of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania followed by an internship in Internal Medicine at the Good Samaritan Hospital and Medical Center in Portland, Oregon. She completed her residency training in Preventive Medicine at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. She also received a Master of Public Health (MPH) degree in epidemiology from Johns Hopkins with specialty training in occupational and environmental epidemiology. Prior to her medical training, Dr. Meinhardt worked as an environmental scientist participating in both air and water pollution investigations that emphasized the use of primary pollution indicators as diagnostic signs of environmental pollution in the US.

Dr. Meinhardt has provided technical assistance and medical consultation to numerous local, state, and national organizations and agencies in both the private and public sector over the past 15 years regarding the health consequences of water-related disease. She has chaired and moderated a number of medical conferences addressing the health effects of water pollution resulting from both microbial and chemical contamination. She has also provided continuing medical education training to medical and public health professionals regarding the recognition, treatment, and prevention of water-related disease with a special emphasis on susceptible populations most at risk for serious morbidity. Dr. Meinhardt has published several chapters and journal articles on waterborne disease, water pollution, and water terrorism and acts as a peer reviewer of submitted water-related manuscripts for Emerging Infectious Diseases published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. She authored a major chapter on water quality management and waterborne disease from microbial and chemical water pollution that was published in Public Health and Preventive Medicine considered an authoritative reference text in preventive medicine. Dr. Meinhardt published a major review of the public health consequences of waterborne Cryptosporidium in the American Journal of Epidemiology: Epidemiologic Review. She also participated as an environmental medicine expert in the 2006 Drinking Water Contaminant Candidate List (CCL) Expert Review Panel (Phase II) at the invitation of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Office of Water. By invitation, she acts as the subject matter expert on waterborne disease, water pollution, and disaster preparedness for water contamination events for the Responder Knowledge Base sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security and Office of Domestic Preparedness and the National Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism.

Dr. Meinhardt has also participated as a medical expert on several private and governmental review committees addressing physician preparedness, disaster response strategies, and infrastructure protection including water safety and security. She has received funding from and worked in collaboration with the Environmental Protection Agency, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), American College of Preventive Medicine (ACPM), and the American Water Works Association (AWWA) to provide education to healthcare practitioners concerning the recognition, treatment, and prevention of water-related disease resulting from natural disasters, man-made pollution, and intentional contamination of water. Dr. Meinhardt was awarded a $1.1 Million grant from the EPA to provide waterborne disease recognition, medical management, threat assessment, and risk communication training to 19,500 medical and public health practitioners, emergency response and disaster management professionals, and public infrastructure specialists throughout the US and Canada. She developed and delivered a series of presentations addressing the medical management of water contamination through webinars, videoconferences, satellite broadcasts and live webcasts to the US, Canada, Puerto Rico, and Guam with viewing audiences of up to 10,000 viewers for webcast events.

Dr. Meinhardt has authored this medical reference guide, Recognizing Waterborne Disease and the Health Effects of Water Pollution: A Physician On-Line Reference Guide to provide comprehensive resources for healthcare providers and public health authorities faced with recognizing and managing water-related disease in their communities. In the past five years, the medical website has received more than 10 million hits for information from over 350,000 visitors located in 89 countries. More than 425 organizations have highlighted and incorporated this medical website as a waterborne disease medical reference guide including the American Medical Association, American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, American College of Preventive Medicine, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In addition, with sponsorship from the American College of Preventive Medicine, Dr. Meinhardt developed a total of 44.5 On-line Continuing Medical Education Credits (CME) and Maintenance of Certification Credits (MOC) for review of the content of Recognizing Waterborne Disease and the Health Effects of Water Pollution: A Physician On-Line Reference Guide (22 CME credit hours) and Physician Preparedness for Acts of Water Terrorism: A Physician Online Readiness Guide (22.5 CME credit hours).

If you have any comments about this website and would like to contact the author, click here and use the contact form provided.

Page last modified on April 10, 2011

Patricia L. Meinhardt, MD, MPH, MA, Author

Original funding for this website was provided by the Environmental Protection Agency, the American Water Works Association, and the Arnot Ogden Medical Center.

This website does not host any form of advertisement.

External sites and linkages are not endorsed by the Environmental Protection Agency, American Water Works Association, Arnot Ogden Medical Center or the author.

This page may be reproduced noncommercially by physicians and other health care professionals to share with one another and their patients.
Any other reproduction is subject to approval.
© 2000 - 2014 American Water Works Association. All Rights Reserved

Print This Page

Privacy Statement | Disclaimer | Internet Guidelines for Health Related Information | Previous Page | Contact Us
We comply with the HONcode standard for
health trust worthy information:
verify here.