Project Background:

Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning, including Accidental non-fire-related (ANFR) poisoning, is a recognised public health problem.

Study Aims:

This study aimed to better characterize the burden of disease in terms of hospital admissions and A&E attendances. The first phase of this study investigated trends CO hospital admissions in England from 2001-2010 (using HES inpatients data) by age, sex, geography, ethnicity and deprivation. In phase two, A&E attendances for CO poisoning will be investigated, followed by development of methodologies to link across A&E and HES inpatients datasets to explore presentation patterns for patients ultimately diagnosed with CO poisoning and estimation of spatial uncertainty in these patterns or trends. Health data used will be HES inpatients and HES A&E (2007-2012).
Potential to extend the study to link with coroners’ data and mortality datasets (a novel exercise which has benefits for other research), will be considered.
The extent to which information on exposure markers (such as housing quality) might provide information on ‘at risk’ areas and necessity for further deployment of small scale exposure studies in the field (to validate estimates of CO exposure sources) will also be assessed.

Health Data:

NHS Digital HES inpatients and A&E

Benefits to Public:

Integration of information on population exposure and health effects will support an overall estimate of disease burden from CO in the national population, and support work on Environmental Public Health Tracking led by Public Health England to help prevent CO poisoning cases. The development of methodologies to link between datasets will benefit future researchers using these datasets.  The outputs of the project will be published in peer-reviewed journals during the course of the study and after completion, which is expected by 2016. 


Ghosh RE; Close R; McCann LJ; et al. Analysis of hospital admissions due to accidental non-fire-related carbon monoxide poisoning in England, between 2001 and 2010. Journal of Public Health Mar 2015;