Risk Factors for Intensive Care Unit Admission and In-hospital Mortality Among Hospitalized Adults Identified through the US Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)-Associated Hospitalization Surveillance Network (COVID-NET)

Clin Infect Dis. 2021 May 4;72(9):e206-e214. doi: 10.1093/cid/ciaa1012.


Background: Currently, the United States has the largest number of reported coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases and deaths globally. Using a geographically diverse surveillance network, we describe risk factors for severe outcomes among adults hospitalized with COVID-19.

Methods: We analyzed data from 2491 adults hospitalized with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 between 1 March-2 May 2020, as identified through the Coronavirus Disease 2019-Associated Hospitalization Surveillance Network, which comprises 154 acute-care hospitals in 74 counties in 13 states. We used multivariable analyses to assess associations between age, sex, race and ethnicity, and underlying conditions with intensive care unit (ICU) admission and in-hospital mortality.

Results: The data show that 92% of patients had ≥1 underlying condition; 32% required ICU admission; 19% required invasive mechanical ventilation; and 17% died. Independent factors associated with ICU admission included ages 50-64, 65-74, 75-84, and ≥85 years versus 18-39 years (adjusted risk ratios [aRRs], 1.53, 1.65, 1.84, and 1.43, respectively); male sex (aRR, 1.34); obesity (aRR, 1.31); immunosuppression (aRR, 1.29); and diabetes (aRR, 1.13). Independent factors associated with in-hospital mortality included ages 50-64, 65-74, 75-84, and ≥ 85 years versus 18-39 years (aRRs, 3.11, 5.77, 7.67, and 10.98, respectively); male sex (aRR, 1.30); immunosuppression (aRR, 1.39); renal disease (aRR, 1.33); chronic lung disease (aRR 1.31); cardiovascular disease (aRR, 1.28); neurologic disorders (aRR, 1.25); and diabetes (aRR, 1.19).

Conclusions: In-hospital mortality increased markedly with increasing age. Aggressive implementation of prevention strategies, including social distancing and rigorous hand hygiene, may benefit the population as a whole, as well as those at highest risk for COVID-19-related complications.

Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; hospitalization; mortality; surveillance.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • COVID-19*
  • Hospital Mortality
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Intensive Care Units
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Risk Factors
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • United States / epidemiology