Diseases Burden of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Attributable to Ground-Level Ozone in Thailand: Estimates Based on Surface Monitoring Measurements Data

  •  Chayut Pinichka    
  •  Kanitta Bundhamcharoen    
  •  Kenji Shibuya    


BACKGROUND: Ambient ozone (O3) pollution has increased globally since preindustrial times. At present, O3 is one of the major air pollution concerns in Thailand, and is associated with health impacts such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The objective of our study is to estimate the burden of disease attributed to O3 in 2009 in Thailand based on empirical evidence.

METHODS: We estimated disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) attributable to O3 using the comparative risk assessment framework in the Global Burden of Diseases (GBD) study. We quantified the population attributable fraction (PAF), integrated from Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-based spatial interpolation, the population distribution of exposure, and the exposure-response coefficient to spatially characterize exposure to ambient O3 pollution on a national scale. Exposure distribution was derived from GIS-based spatial interpolation O3 exposure model using Pollution Control Department Thailand (PCD) surface air pollution monitor network sources. Relative risk (RR) and population attributable fraction (PAF) were determined using health impact function estimates for O3.

RESULT: PAF (%) of COPD attributable to O3 were determined by region: at approximately, Northern = 2.1, Northeastern = 7.1, Central = 9.6, Eastern = 1.75, Western = 1.47 and Southern = 1.74. The total COPD burden attributable to O3 for Thailand in 2009 was 61,577 DALYs. Approximately 0.6% of the total DALYs in Thailand is male: 48,480 DALYs; and female: 13,097 DALYs.

CONCLUSION: This study provides the first empirical evidence on the health burden (DALYs) attributable to O3 pollution in Thailand. Varying across regions, the disease burden attributable to O3 was 0.6% of the total national burden in 2009. Better empirical data on local specific sites, e.g. urban and rural areas, alternative exposure assessment, e.g. land use regression (LUR), and a local concentration-response coefficient are required for future studies in Thailand.

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