Air Pollution Linked to COVID-19 Worse COVID-19 Outcomes

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A recently published study showed that exposure to air pollution is associated with more severe COVID-19 infections. People exposed to higher levels of black carbon over were 226% more likely to be admitted to the intensive care unit. Similarly nitrous oxide pollution was linked to a 254% greater chance of an ICU stay. Another study found that substandard air quality was associated with a 23% higher risk of death from the virus. These findings build on previous research showing the strong connection between air pollution and COVID-19 outcomes. Common air pollutants also exacerbate other respiratory diseases by causing lung inflammation and weakening the immune system.

The study also revealed that air quality affected patients’ response to COVID-19 almost as much as medical treatments did. Reducing levels of air pollutants makes us more susceptible to infection as individuals and as a society. “These results show how air pollution can compromise our immune system and leave us vulnerable. Reduction of air pollution should be at the heart of preventive measures for current and future pandemics, as well as a strategy for dealing with seasonal influenza pandemics”, said Dr. Zorana Jovanovic Andersen of the University of Copenhagen.

Full Story: The Guardian