Triage tool for suspected COVID-19 patients in the emergency room: AIFELL score

Braz J Infect Dis. 2020 Aug 20;S1413-8670(20)30102-1. doi: 10.1016/j.bjid.2020.07.003. Online ahead of print.

Abstract

Clinical prediction scores support the assessment of patients in the emergency setting to determine the need for further diagnostic and therapeutic steps. During the current COVID-19 pandemic, physicians in emergency rooms (ER) of many hospitals have a considerably higher patient load and need to decide within a short time frame whom to hospitalize. Based on our clinical experiences in dealing with COVID-19 patients at the University Hospital in Zurich, we created a triage score with the acronym "AIFELL" consisting of clinical, radiological and laboratory findings. The score was then evaluated in a retrospective analysis of 122 consecutive patients with suspected COVID-19 from March until mid-April 2020. Descriptive statistics, Student's t-test, ANOVA and Scheffe's post-hoc analysis confirmed the diagnostic power of the score. The results suggest that the AIFELL score has potential as a triage tool in the ER setting intended to select probable COVID-19 cases for hospitalization in spontaneously presenting or referred patients with acute respiratory symptoms.

Keywords: COVID-19; Emergency; SARS-CoV-2; Score.