FUZZY COMPUTATIONAL MODELS TO EVALUATE THE EFFECTS OF AIR POLLUTION ON CHILDREN
ABSTRACT Objective: To build a fuzzy computational model to estimate the number of hospitalizations of children aged up to 10 years due to respiratory conditions based on pollutants and climatic factors in the city of São José do Rio Preto, Brazil. Methods: A computational model was constructed using the fuzzy logic. The model has 4 inputs, each with 2 membership functions generating 16 rules, and the output with 5 pertinence functions, based on the Mamdani’s method, to estimate the association between the pollutants and the number of hospitalizations. Data from hospitalizations, from 2011-2013, were obtained in DATASUS - and the pollutants Particulate Matter (PM10) and Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2), wind speed and temperature were obtained by the Environmental Company of São Paulo State (Cetesb). Results: A total of 1,161 children were hospitalized in the period and the mean of pollutants was 36 and 51 µg/m3 - PM10 and NO2, respectively. The best values of the Pearson correlation (0.34) and accuracy measured by the Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) curve (NO2 - 96.7% and PM10 - 90.4%) were for hospitalizations on the same day of exposure. Conclusions: The model was effective in predicting the number of hospitalizations of children and could be used as a tool in the hospital management of the studied region.