Health effects of a sulphur dioxide episode in the East Midlands
On 2 September 1998, residents of Nottingham experienced unusually high levels of sulphur dioxide. A study investigated health impacts by comparing hospital admissions in Nottingham with those in Leicester (a neighbouring town unaffected by the episode) during the week before and the week after the air pollution episode. Comparisons were also made with the same two weeks in previous years. A general increase in hospital admissions occurred during the episode week, with a significant increase in respiratory admissions, particularly asthma. However, mortality rates did not vary substantially. This publication helped establish that it is feasible to use routinely collected hospital data to investigate the adverse health effects of an air pollution incident. A similar approach may therefore be employed to determine the effects of future air pollution episodes.
Journal of Public Health Medicine 25:369-371 (2003)
Environment Agency - information on sulphur dioxide