Coronavirus, coronavirus disease 2019, (COVID-19), weather, climate, temperature

Association between climate and new daily diagnoses of COVID-19

Mattiuzzi, Camilla;Lippi, Giuseppe


Coronavirus, coronavirus disease 2019, (COVID-19), weather, climate, temperature
Background: Although evidence is accumulating that climate conditions may positively or negatively influence the scale of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreaks, uncertainty remains concerning the real impact of climate factors on viral transmission. Methods: The number of new daily cases of COVID-19 diagnosed in Verona (Italy) was retrieved from the official website of Veneto Region, while information on daily weather parameters in the same area was downloaded from IlMeteo website, a renowned Italian technological company specialized in weather forecasts. The search period ranged between March 1 and November 11, 2020. The number of new daily COVID-19 cases and meteorological data in Verona were correlated using both univariate and multivariate analysis. Results: The number of daily COVID-19 diagnoses in Verona was positively associated with the number of days in lockdown and humidity, and inversely correlated with mean, min and max temperature, mean wind speed and number of days with rainfall. Days of lockdown, mean air temperature, humidity, mean wind speed and number of days with rainfall remained significantly associated in multivariate analysis. The four weather parameters contributed to explaining 61% of variance in new daily COVID-19 diagnoses. Each 1% increase in air temperature, 1% decrease in humidity, 1 km/h increase in wind speed and day with rainfall were independently associated with 1.0%, 0.3%, 1.2% and 5.4% reduction in new COVID-19 daily diagnoses. A significant difference was observed in values of all-weather parameters recorded in Verona between days with <100 or ≥100 new daily COVID-19 diagnoses. Conclusions: Climate conditions may play an essential role in conditions of viral transmission, and influence the likelihood or course of local COVID-19 outbreaks. Preventive measures, testing policies and hospital preparedness should be reinforced during periods of higher meteorological risk and in local environments with adverse climate conditions.
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