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J Public Health Policy. 2019 Mar;40(1):17-34. doi: 10.1057/s41271-018-0148-6.

Air pollution control and the occurrence of acute respiratory illness in school children of Quito, Ecuador.

Author information

1
Facultad de Ciencias Médicas, Universidad Central Ecuador, Luis Sodiro sn, 170136, Quito, Ecuador. bmestrella@uce.edu.ec.
2
Facultad de Ciencias Médicas, Universidad Central Ecuador, Luis Sodiro sn, 170136, Quito, Ecuador.
3
Department of Epidemiology, Erasmus MC, University Medical Centre, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
4
Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, Medford, MA, 02155, USA.

Abstract

Because of air quality management and control, traffic-related air pollution has declined in Quito, Ecuador. We evaluated the effect of a city-wide 5-year air pollution control program on the occurrence of acute respiratory illness (ARI). We compared two studies conducted at the same location in Quito: in 2000, 2 years before the policy to control vehicle emission was introduced, and in 2007. Each study involved ~ 730 children aged 6-12 years, observed for 15 weeks. We examined associations between carboxyhemoglobin (COHb) serum concentration-an exposure proxy for carbon monoxide (CO)-ambient CO, and ARI in both cohorts. In 2007, we found a 48% reduction in the ARI incidence (RR 0.52; 95% CI 0.45-0.62, p < 0.0001), and 92% decrease in the percentage of children with COHb > 2.5% as compared to the 2000 study. We found no association between COHb concentrations above the safe level of 2.5% and the ARI incidence (p = 0.736). The decline in air pollution due to vehicle emissions control was associated with a lower incidence of respiratory illness in school children.

KEYWORDS:

Acute respiratory illness; Carboxyhemoglobin; Policy emission control

PMID:
30377300
DOI:
10.1057/s41271-018-0148-6
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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