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Community-level Vulnerable Factors on the Association Between PM and Environmental Diseases in Seoul, Korea

Hyomi Kim, Sung Eun Kim, Sojin Lee, Hye-Jin Lee, Jung-Ah Kim

Disease and economic burden of environmental diseases such as asthma, allergic rhinitis, and atopic dermatitis still shows increasing trend. Onset or exacerbation of these environmental diseases are affected by various factors including ambient PM concentration and community or individual level factors. In this study, we aimed to assess the associations between PM and environmental diseases and to identify potential community(gu)-level vulnerable factors that modifying the associations.

The estimated relative risk (RR) of PM2.5 per 10μg/m3 increases for hospital outpatient visit for asthma is 1.0188 in Seoul. The estimated attributable rates of PM2.5 is 2.89%. Estimated RRs were substantially differed by gu. Air quality, percentage of biological or socio-economical vulnerable population, health status, and medical infra were identified as gu-level vulnerable factors that affecting on the associations between PM and environmental diseases. Identified vulnerable factors are substantially differed by gu.

To reduce disease and environmental burden of environmental diseases, it should be consider both political options for reducing ambient concentrations of PM and for improving response abilities of vulnerable subgroup who exposed to vulnerable factors in each gu.