Mumbai: Mumbai’s poor air quality led to 13,444 deaths due to respiratory diseases such as acute bronchitis, asthma and pneumonia between 2017 and 2021. As per available data, over 1,000 succumbed to pneumonia and asthma alone.
Experts said that though smoking, genetic diseases and poor air quality are all key factors, industrial pollution, vehicular exhaust and occupational asthma can’t be ruled out as reasons. A pulmonologist from a private-run hospital said that “people dying of pneumonia are either over 65 years old or infants younger than a year.”
Early detection is the key
A senior health official from the civic health department said that early detection is key to curing most of these infections. They said once such infections are in late stages, most people cannot afford financially burdening treatment.
According to a 2020 study by the Centre for Science and Environment in four major industrial clusters around Mumbai – the Trans-Thane Creek, Taloja, Ambernath and Dombivali – the massive use of coal in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region is also a key factor for the deteriorating air quality.
Dr Parthiv Shah, a pulmonologist at the Apex Group of Hospital (Borivali) said, “Air pollution has increased tremendously in Mumbai and surrounding areas. We are also experiencing strange weather conditions such as nippy mornings and hot afternoons. The elderly, children and pregnant women are especially affected by such weather.
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