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Bull World Health Organ. 2014 Nov 1;92(11):790-7. doi: 10.2471/BLT.13.132118. Epub 2014 Sep 17.

Asbestos: use, bans and disease burden in Europe.

Author information

1
Department of Environmental Epidemiology, Institute of Industrial Ecological Sciences, University of Occupational and Environmental Health, Iseigaoka 1-1, Yahatanishiku, Kitakyushu, Japan .
2
WHO Western Pacific Regional Office, Suva, Fiji .
3
Department of Medical Humanities and Social Medicine, Kosin University College of Medicine, Busan, Republic of Korea .
4
University of Jyväskylä, Jyväskylä, Finland .

Abstract

in English, Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian, Spanish

OBJECTIVE:

To analyse national data on asbestos use and related diseases in the European Region of the World Health Organization (WHO).

METHODS:

For each of the 53 countries, per capita asbestos use (kg/capita/year) and age-adjusted mortality rates (deaths/million persons/year) due to mesothelioma and asbestosis were calculated using the databases of the United States Geological Survey and WHO, respectively. Countries were further categorized by ban status: early-ban (ban adopted by 2000, n = 17), late-ban (ban adopted 2001-2013, n = 17), and no-ban (n = 19).

FINDINGS:

Between 1920-2012, the highest per capita asbestos use was found in the no-ban group. After 2000, early-ban and late-ban groups reduced their asbestos use levels to less than or equal to 0.1 kg/capita/year, respectively, while the no-ban group maintained a very high use at 2.2 kg/capita/year. Between 1994 and 2010, the European Region registered 106,180 deaths from mesothelioma and asbestosis, accounting for 60% of such deaths worldwide. In the early-ban and late-ban groups, 16/17 and 15/17 countries, respectively, reported mesothelioma data to WHO, while only 6/19 countries in the no-ban group reported such data. The age-adjusted mortality rates for mesothelioma for the early-ban, late-ban and no-ban groups were 9.4, 3.7 and 3.2 deaths/million persons/year, respectively. Asbestosis rates for the groups were 0.8, 0.9 and 1.5 deaths/million persons/year, respectively.

CONCLUSION:

Within the European Region, the early-ban countries reported most of the current asbestos-related deaths. However, this might shift to the no-ban countries, since the disease burden will likely increase in these countries due the heavy use of asbestos.

PMID:
25378740
PMCID:
PMC4221761
DOI:
10.2471/BLT.13.132118
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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