Covid-19 and air pollution: What is the link?


RESEARCH links air pollution with the worsening of a variety of cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases.

Evidence suggests an association between air pollution and worse Covid-19 outcomes.

This may account for the disproportionate effect of Covid-19 on marginalized racial and ethnic groups.

In a new literature review, researchers have outlined the evidence connecting air pollution and worse Covid-19 outcomes.

The authors of the article, which appears in the Annals of the American Thoracic Society, argue that stricter air pollution standards and taking action to end the disproportionate amount of air pollution in marginalized neighborhoods are needed.

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According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 91%Trusted Source of people around the world live in a place that does not meet WHO air pollution standards.

The American Lung Association has recently found that almost half of people in the U.S.

live in a county that has an unhealthy amount of air pollution — an increase from the last three reports in 2017, 2018, and 2019.

Researchers have shown that air pollution can worsen respiratory and cardiovascular diseases, reproductive issues, nervous system dysfunction, and the development of cancer.

According to the WHOTrusted Source, ambient (outdoor) air pollution kills 4.2 million people each year.

Since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, researchers have explored what possible link exists between air pollution and risks associated with Covid-19.

The researchers outline the latest evidence in the current article, demonstrating a clear link between air pollution and worse Covid-19 outcomes.

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According to the corresponding author of the article Dr. Stephen Andrew Mein, a physician in Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) Department of Medicine in Boston, MA, “a multitude of studies show that exposure to higher long-term ambient air pollution is associated with both increased risk of infection and death from Covid-19.”