Study finds uneven levels of awareness among doctors about air pollution and health

Health Care Without Harm’s partner in India, the Centre for Chronic Disease Control (CCDC), has published findings from a study titled "Understanding knowledge, attitude and practice of health practitioners towards health effects of air pollution in India."

A sample of physicians, pulmonologists and cardiologists from selected cities were approached to understand their practice and perspectives with regard to air pollution in India. Despite air pollution becoming an important issue globally and specifically in India, the study findings showed that many physicians are not completely equipped to recognize and communicate the health impacts of air pollution to their patients. 

Read the full report here

On July 18 CCDC hosted a webinar and panel discussion “Health practitioners perception towards health effects of air pollution in India” to talk about the key findings, recommendations, and implications of the study.

The panel was led by renowned doctors in India who emphasized the need to understand the impacts of air pollution on health from multiple perspectives and the need for improved medical training on air pollution. During the webinar, doctors discussed the epigenetic impacts of pollutant exposure and how that makes multiple generations susceptible to the harms of air pollution.

Understanding that air pollution is linked to cardio-vascular disease and higher infant mortality rates was another important discussion item. Overall, it is clear that given the rising global burden of disease associated with air pollution in India, one way to educate doctors around the health effects of air pollution would be to be more purposeful about these conversations at medical conferences as well as include this information in medical curriculum for future physicians to learn about, and pass on this information to patients.