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WHO Changes Georgia’s Ranking Regarding Mortality Rate Caused By Pollution

By Tea Mariamidze
Thursday, July 12
World Health Organization (WHO) has revised the data from its 2016 report, where Georgia was ranked the 1st place regarding the cases of deaths caused by air pollution, and in its 2018 report Georgia is ranked the 70th among the 194 countries.

The improved indicators are the result of joint efforts by Georgia and WHO during last two years, after the 2016 report was issued. In July 2016, then Health Minister of Georgia Davit Sergeenko met with the WHO experts in Tbilisi and it was decided that the organization would re-evaluate the air pollution rates.

The Ministry of Health stated that in order to prepare the 2016 report, the WHO used the data of 2002-2005 years, which determined the fact that Georgia was ranked the 1st place.

The report from 2016 reads that 292 out of 100,000 people die in Georgia due to air pollution every year.

However, the report from 2018, the WHO says that the number of deaths due to air pollution is 101.8 per 100,000, and instead of the first one, Georgia takes 70th place now.

The latest round of consultations was held in May and the final results reflected on the newest report of the WHO.

The National Center for Disease Control (NCDC) of Georgia welcomed the World Health Organization’s updated report.

The NCDC says Georgia, with its macroeconomic and health indicators, is not far away from the results of several middle-income European countries while the air pollution level is not above that of the European median rate.

“Accordingly, naming Georgia, in the Health Statistics 2016 report, as the country with the highest mortality rate due to air pollution was unacceptable,” the NCDC statement reads.

The World Health Statistics series is WHO’s annual snapshot of the state of the world’s health. This 2018 edition contains the latest available data for 36 health-related Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) indicators. It is also related to the three SDG-aligned strategic priorities of the WHO’s 13th General Program of Work: achieving universal health coverage, addressing health emergencies and promoting healthier populations.