Health Risks Assessment of Criteria Air Pollutants on Shiraz Residents Using AirQ and GAM models during 2012-2013
Air pollutants have harmful impacts on human health and aggravation of diseases and mortality. This study was conducted to investigate the impact of PM10, NO2, SO2, and O3 on cardiovascular and respiratory mortality and hospital admissions in Shiraz during 2012-2013.
The health impact of pollutants was quantified using AirQ2.2.3 model provided by WHO Regional Office-European Center for Environment and Health. In addition, Generalized Additive Model (GAM) in R was used to investigate the relationship between pollutants and disease and mortality.
According to the results of quantification with WHO’s default values for Baseline Incidence (BI) and Relative Risk (RR) as well as the number of hospital admissions related to PM10 (1,375 cases in 2012 and 874 ones in 2013), it has been observed that respiratory diseases have had the highest health impacts. On the other hand, an assessment using regional values for BI and RR indicated that the highest health impacts were related to respiratory diseases due to exposure to O3 with 134 and 252 cases in 2012 and 2013, respectively. Moreover, significant relationships were observed among PM10, NO2, and O3 and respiratory mortality, hospital admissions due to cardiovascular diseases, and hospital admissions due to respiratory diseases in patients aging 65 years and older.
Overall, the results showed that due to different geographical, statistical, and climatic features of each region, WHO’s default values for BI and RR cannot be used normally in some cases. Thus, calculated BI and RR values should be used for such cases. However, further research is needed to assess the health impacts of air pollutants in terms of BI and RR specific to the study region.
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