Review Existing Data Resources in Ireland

(Lead: Dr Stig Hellebust)

An review of existing data from air quality monitoring networks, health databases and administrative sources.

This will help identify gaps in data holdings and collection systems with respect to effective linkage of air quality and health and will show where we need more data and how it should be collected and better used.

Air quality data and health data are collected in very different and completely separate infrastructures. This makes it very difficult to carry out conclusive research on the effect of air pollution on health. We need to identify ways in which to link the two types of data. A full review of available data and identifying gaps is the basis of building a data infrastructure conducive to good health research in the future. Currently, published data on health statistics can not be usefully compared with air quality data, because published health statistics are grouped at a national, county or hospital level while air quality data comes from monitoring stations placed across the country.

The only way to usefully compare administrative health data with air quality is to use microdata, i.e. individual health records, but this approach is prevented by the general data protection regulation rules. The solution may be to aggregate health data in individuals who live around air monitoring stations.

The INHALE Project

Room 4.120, 4th Floor, Western Gateway Building, University College Cork, Ireland,