Delhi

Doctors question efficacy of air purifiers

In the midst of the worst spell of smog in the city, sales of air purifiers have shot up with even the State government considering installing air purifiers around the city to maintain air quality. But doctors have now questioned the benefit of air purifiers in a heavily polluted city like Delhi.

India’s largest community of verified doctors, Curofy, conducted a poll asking doctors if air purifiers are effective in a city like Delhi. A total of 1,580 doctors responded to the poll out of which 1,030, or 65.1 per cent, said that air purifiers cannot save the day.

In the absence of research and peer-reviewed studies one cannot say how much an air purifier can help, said the doctors.

Outdoor pollution

Director and HOD of pulmonology and sleep medicine at Fortis Memorial Research Institute in Gurgaon, Dr. Manoj Goel said: “Air purifiers are for indoor pollution, which is more prevalent in western countries. In India, outdoor pollution is the major concern, so purifiers will not be of much use.”

“While air purifiers are effective against particulate and smoke in a limited area, there is no research to prove their efficacy in a heavily polluted area like Delhi. They are more like a band-aid approach to save our lungs, useful till we are inside our homes but ineffective to clean the whole city.”

Only 550, or 34.8 per cent, of doctors said air purifiers can be effective.

Senior consultant at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital Dr. Arup Basu said: “Air purifiers do not have any proven value. They will be effective in a sealed house. We may also use hepa-filters that are used in the industry. But outside our homes their efficacy is questionable.”

So, while most of the doctors don’t endorse air purifiers completely, their usefulness within the walls of our homes can’t be denied.

Meanwhile, the director of Jiva Ayurveda Dr. Partap Chauhan said: “Air-cleaning house plants such as aloe vera, bamboo palm, moneyplant, spider plant, dracaena, pothos and sanseveria serve as excellent filters of toxic agents in the air. These plants are easy to grow and maintain and look beautiful. They absorb harmful gases and pollutants.’’



Air purifiers are

for indoor pollution... in India, outdoor pollution is the major concern, so purifiers will not be of much use



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Printable version | May 30, 2020 11:44:53 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/Doctors-question-efficacy-of-air-purifiers/article16440354.ece

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