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released: 22 Mar 2010 author: AIHW media release

Air pollution can trigger asthma and, in severe cases, has been associated with hospitalisation and death. How much of a problem is air pollution though? What proportion of asthma exacerbations are due to air pollution each year? How much does this vary with extreme events such as bushfires and dust storms? This paper discusses the challenges associated with this type of monitoring, outlines the work that has so far been done in Australia in this area and presents a method for estimating the contribution of air pollution to asthma hospitalisations. The method has been applied to a particular case study 'Melbourne in 2006' to test its potential usefulness.

ISBN 978-1-74249-007-6; Cat. no. ACM 18; 40pp.; INTERNET ONLY

Full Publication

Publication table of contents

  • Preliminary material (205KB PDF)
    • Title and verso pages
    • Contents
    • Acknowledgments
    • Summary
  • Body section (523KB PDF)
    1. Introduction
      • Components of air pollution
      • Health effect estimates
      • Air pollution and incidence data
    2. Key challenges
      • Regional variation
      • Time and lag effects
      • Measurement methods
      • Age ranges
      • Baseline incidence
      • Data gaps
      • Exposure-response relationship
      • Co-linearity
    3. Previous research
      • Mortality
      • Hospitalisation
        • Sydney
        • Melbourne
        • Brisbane
        • Perth
        • Multiple cities
    4. Proposed methodology
      • Effect estimate selection
      • Data modifications to account for the unknown exposure-response relationship
      • Notes on the hospital data analysis
    5. Results
    6. Conclusions and future challenges
  • End matter (146KB PDF)
    • Appendix A: Key pollutants
      • Particulate matter (PM)
        • Main sources
        • Main measuring techniques
        • Recent trends
      • Ozone (O3)
        • Main sources
        • Main measuring technique
        • Recent trends
      • Nitrogen dioxide (NO2)
        • Main sources
        • Main measuring technique
        • Recent trends
      • Carbon monoxide (CO)
        • Main sources
        • Main measuring technique
        • Recent trends
      • Sulfur dioxide (SO2)
        • Main sources
        • Main measuring technique
        • Recent trends
    • References

Recommended citation

AIHW 2010. Monitoring the impact of air pollution on asthma in Australia: a methods paper. Asthma series. Cat. no. ACM 18. Canberra: AIHW. Viewed 24 July 2017 <http://www.aihw.gov.au/publication-detail/?id=6442468338>.

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