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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter August 3, 2018

A review of the chemical and biological pollutants in indoor air in hospitals and assessing their effects on the health of patients, staff and visitors

  • Fatemeh Ghanizadeh and Hatam Godini EMAIL logo


Indoor air quality in hospitals has been specifically considered in terms of its impact on health. Air quality is an important risk factor influencing the health of staff and patients who are in contact with indoor air inhaled in hospitals. Over the past two decades, hundreds of studies have been developed to assess pollution in hospital environment. Two hundred and fitfy papers from around the world, from the last two decades, were identified and reviewed. Recent studies have found that the presence of various chemical and biological pollutants affected the health of patients, staff and visitors. Nearly all the reports agree that chemical and biological pollutants in the hospital environment have adverse effects. In most of the reviewed papers, analysis of health hazards was conducted for personnel and patients to toxic metals, chlorine, fine (PM2.5) and coarse (PM2.5−10) particles, and bio-aerosol in the inhaled air of the hospital environment. Some papers showed that some of the metals are carcinogens and others do not have a carcinogenic risk. Bio-aerosols as a biological pollutant are usually defined as airborne bacteria, fungi, viruses, pollen and their by products. These biological pollutants are associated with a wide range of health effects in hospital environments. This review can serve as an introduction and as the statement of the problem for more original research in this regard.

  1. Research funding: Authors state no funding involved.

  2. Conflict of interest: Authors state no conflict of interest.

  3. Informed consent: Informed consent is not applicable.

  4. Ethical approval: The conducted research is not related to either human or animal use.


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Received: 2018-02-14
Accepted: 2018-06-07
Published Online: 2018-08-03
Published in Print: 2018-09-25

©2018 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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