The research found an elevated likelihood of hospitalization, admission to an ICU and death among COVID-19 cases who were chronically exposed to fine particulate matter, nitrogen dioxide and ground-level ozone. Ozone exposure was found to be particularly harmful, leading to increased odds of hospitalization, ICU admission and death. The study from researchers associated with Health Canada builds on previous research out of Spain and Mexico that also found links between chronic exposure to air pollution and severe outcomes from COVID-19. The Canadian Urban Environmental Health Research Consortium found around 86% of Canadians live in areas where airborne fine particulate matter levels exceed guidelines set by the WHO. A national Statistics Canada study showed people living in poorer areas are at greater risk of exposure to air pollution.
May 24, 2022