Environmental Health Perspectives
BACKGROUND: Associations between air pollution and a multitude of health effects are now well established. Given ubiquitous exposure to some level of air pollution, the attributable health burden can be high, particularly for susceptible populations. OBJECTIVES: An international multidisciplinary workshop was convened to discuss evidence of the effectiveness of actions to reduce health impacts of air pollution at both the community and individual level. The overall aim was to summarize current knowledge regarding air pollution exposure and health impacts leading to public health recommendations. DISCUSSION: During the workshop, experts reviewed the biological mechanisms of action of air pollution in the initiation and progression of disease, as well as the state of the science regarding community and individual-level interventions. The workshop highlighted strategies to reduce individual baseline risk of conditions associated with increased susceptibility to the effects of air pollution and the need to better understand the role of exposure duration in disease progression, reversal, and adaptation. CONCLUSION: We have identified two promising and largely unexplored strategies to address and mitigate air pollution-related health impacts: reducing individual baseline risk of cardiovascular disease and incorporating air pollution-related health impacts into land-use decisions.
Reproduced with permission from Environmental Health Perspectives.