Impact of air pollution on educational attainment for respiratory health treated students: A cross sectional data linkage study

Mizen, Amy, Lyons, Jane, Milojevic, Ai, Doherty, Ruth, Wilkinson, Paul, Carruthers, David, Akbari, Ashley, Lake, Iain, Davies, Gwyneth A, Al Sallakh, Mohammad
et al (show 3 more authors) (2020) Impact of air pollution on educational attainment for respiratory health treated students: A cross sectional data linkage study. HEALTH & PLACE, 63. 102355-.

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<h4>Introduction</h4>There is some evidence that exam results are worse when students are acutely exposed to air pollution. Studies investigating the association between air pollution and academic attainment have been constrained by small sample sizes.<h4>Methods</h4>Cross sectional educational attainment data (2009-2015) from students aged 15-16 years in Cardiff, Wales were linked to primary health care data, modelled air pollution and measured pollen data, and analysed using multilevel linear regression models. Annual cohort, school and individual level confounders were adjusted for in single and multi-pollutant/pollen models. We stratified by treatment of asthma and/or Seasonal Allergic Rhinitis (SAR).<h4>Results</h4>A unit (10μg/m<sup>3</sup>) increase of short-term exposure to NO<sub>2</sub> was associated with 0.044 (95% CI: -0.079, -0.008) reduction of standardised Capped Point Score (CPS) after adjusting for individual and household risk factors for 18,241 students. This association remained statistically significant after controlling for other pollutants and pollen. There was no association of PM<sub>2.5</sub>, O<sub>3</sub>, or Pollen with standardised CPS remaining after adjustment. We found no evidence that treatment for asthma or SAR modified the observed NO<sub>2</sub> effect on educational attainment.<h4>Conclusion</h4>Our study showed that short-term exposure to traffic-related air pollution, specifically NO<sub>2,</sub> was associated with detrimental educational attainment for students aged 15-16. Longitudinal investigations in different settings are required to confirm this possible impact and further work may uncover the long-term economic implications, and degree to which impacts are cumulative and permanent.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Air pollution, Pollen, Data linkage, Educational attainment, Asthma, Seasonal allergic rhinitis
Divisions: Faculty of Health and Life Sciences
Faculty of Health and Life Sciences > Institute of Population Health
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 23 Jul 2021 10:09
Last Modified: 30 Jun 2023 14:03
DOI: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2020.102355
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