This site is intended for healthcare professionals only

Understanding indoor air quality: A guide for primary care nurses

Written by: | Published:

Dust mites are among the leading contributors to p Dust mites are among the leading contributors to poorer air quality inside the home

When we think about air quality and its contribution to health, we usually think about the outside air pollution. This article focuses on the impact of indoor air quality on health and what primary and community nurses need to know so that they can advise their patients appropriately.

Bad air quality refers to any condition that impacts health such as temperature, visibility and smell. Air pollution, on the other hand, is the presence in air of substances that are harmful to people or other living organisms due to human activity.1

An important issue

‘Why treat people and send them back to them to conditions that made them sick?’ asks professor of public health and health inequalities expert Sir Michael Marmot.

Indoor air quality is an important issue for nurses because:2

Poor air quality affects the most vulnerable and disadvantaged3

Improving the air quality at home may prevent the need for future home/clinic visits, GP attendances, A&E attendances and hospital admissions (see resources)

Poor air quality in work premises affects the health of nurses themselves

On average, people spend 90% of their time indoors, 60% of which is at home.3 Yet knowledge of how poor indoor air quality impacts health is poor.4

The health and economic impact

Please login or register to read the rest of the article and to have access to downloads and comments.

What do you think? Leave a comment below or tweet your views to @IndyNurseMag

This material is protected by MA Healthcare Ltd copyright.
See Terms and Conditions.

Read a free issue from Practice Nursing

Register to read a free issue from our sister publication, Practice Nursing.

Including articles on asthma, diabetes and more. Read your copy.


Sign up to the newsletter


Independent Nurse is the professional resource for primary care and community nurses, providing clinical articles for practice nurses and prescribers.


Subscribe to our newsletter and stay up to date with the latest nursing news.

Stay Connected

Stay social with Independent Nurse by following us on Twitter, liking us on Facebook or connecting on LinkedIn.


Need access to some of our older articles? You can view our archive, or alternatively contact us.

Contact Us

MA Healthcare Ltd.
St Jude's Church, Dulwich Road
London, SE24 0PB

Tel: +44 (0)20 7738 5454
Registered in England and Wales No. 01878373

Meet the team


Find out how to contribute to Independent Nurse here.