Air quality data and the impact on our healthcare

I’ve written many times in the past about the power of data in healthcare, and especially when we start bringing together traditional medical data with user generated data such as from mobile apps, wearable devices and even our genome.

Of course, it can also be potent when we bring to the table environmental data.  It’s estimated that polluted air contributes to the shortening of around 40,000 lives in the UK alone each year.  This is largely due to heart and lung related problems.  Indeed, the European Commission have recently sent a ‘final warning’ to the UK over breaches to air pollution limits in major cities such as London and Glasgow.

Air quality data

So the ability to pool air quality data could have a big impact on our ability to manage the health of the nation.  It’s here that Israeli startup BreezoMeter comes into play, for they provide accurate, detailed and local air quality data.

The site primarily provides this data to businesses and government agencies.  It has an API and various visual reporting tools to help create an easy to use interface.  The data behind the platform is updated on an hourly basis, and is easily compared with historical data.  It also allows for recommendations to be made.

The smart cities movement is slowly gathering pace, and it seems inevitable that services will make increasing use of data to provide joined up services that take a wide range of perspectives into account.  With air pollution such a factor in the health, wellbeing and effectiveness of urban populations, it’s a development that can’t come soon enough.

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