The association of weather and bathing water quality on the incidence of gastrointestinal illness in the west of Scotland

J. I. Eze, E. M. Scott, K. G. Pollock, R. Stidson, C. A. Miller, D. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The associations with weather and bathing water quality on infectious intestinal disease (IID) were investigated using data from two Scottish NHS Board areas. Monthly counts of viral and non-viral gastrointestinal infections were modelled as a smooth function of temperature, relative humidity and average monthly counts of faecal indicator organisms, respectively, adjusting for season and long-term trend effects. Strong seasonal patterns were observed for each group of pathogens. Peak viral gastrointestinal infection was in May while that of non-viral gastrointestinal infections was in July. A statistically significant negative association existed between weather (temperature and humidity) and viral infection. Average levels of non-viral gastrointestinal infections increased as temperature and relative humidity increased. Increasing levels of faecal indicator organisms in bathing waters were also associated with an increase in the average number of viral and non-viral gastrointestinal infections at the ecological level. Future climate change and prolonged precipitation events may result in increasing levels of faecal indicator organisms in bathing waters leading to likely increases in IIDs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1289-1299
Number of pages11
JournalEpidemiology and Infection
Volume142
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPrint publication - 2014
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Faecal indicators
  • gastrointestinal infection
  • humidity
  • pathogens
  • temperature

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