Health, air pollution, and the role of healthcare professionals: the need for urgent action
99% of the global population are breathing air that contains levels of pollutants above the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) recommended guidelines. The 2022 Lancet Countdown report estimates that exposure to air pollution contributed to 4.7 million deaths globally in 2020, of which 1.3 million (35%) were directly related to fossil fuel combustion. In Ireland, at least 1410 deaths are attributed to dangerous levels of air pollution every year. A recent Irish study has revealed average air pollution levels at all three Dublin maternity hospitals to be in excess of the WHO recommended safe limits. The European Union (EU) targets for air quality are legally binding: however WHO recommends far stricter limits than the current EU limits of air pollutants, as new evidence shows that even at relatively low levels, air pollution causes serious illness and even death.
CommentsThe original article is available at www.imj.ie
Published CitationKirk A. et al. Health, air pollution, and the role of healthcare professionals: the need for urgent action. IMJ. 2023;116(2):725
Publication Date23 February 2023
- Public Health and Epidemiology
PublisherIrish Medical Association
- Published Version (Version of Record)