BMC Public Health (Sep 2022)

Effects of extreme precipitation on hospital visit risk and disease burden of depression in Suzhou, China

  • Gang Jiang,
  • Yanhu Ji,
  • Changhao Chen,
  • Xiaosong Wang,
  • Tiantian Ye,
  • Yuhuan Ling,
  • Heng Wang

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 22, no. 1
pp. 1 – 9


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Abstract Background The purpose of this study was to explore the impact of extreme precipitation on the risk of outpatient visits for depression and to further explore its associated disease burden and vulnerable population. Methods A quasi-Poisson generalized linear regression model combined with distributed lag non-linear model (DLNM) was used to investigate the exposure-lag-response relationship between extreme precipitation (≥95th percentile) and depression outpatient visits from 2017 to 2019 in Suzhou city, Anhui Province, China. Results Extreme precipitation was positively associated with the outpatient visits for depression. The effects of extreme precipitation on depression firstly appeared at lag4 [relative risk (RR): 1.047, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.005–1.091] and lasted until lag7 (RR = 1.047, 95% CI: 1.009–1.087). Females, patients aged ≥65 years and patients with multiple outpatient visits appeared to be more sensitive to extreme precipitation. The attributable fraction (AF) and numbers (AN) of extreme precipitation on outpatient visits for depression were 5.00% (95% CI: 1.02–8.82%) and 1318.25, respectively. Conclusions Our findings suggested that extreme precipitation may increase the risk of outpatient visits for depression. Further studies on the burden of depression found that females, aged ≥65 years, and patients with multiple visits were priority targets for future warnings. Active intervention measures against extreme precipitation events should be taken to reduce the risk of depression outpatient visits.