Objectives: The development of a prognostic mortality risk model for hospitalized COVID-19 patients may facilitate patient treatment planning, comparisons of therapeutic strategies, and public health preparations.
Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the electronic health records of patients hospitalized within a 13-hospital New Jersey USA network between March 1, 2020 and April 22, 2020 with positive polymerase chain reaction results for SARS-CoV-2, with follow-up through May 29, 2020. With death or hospital discharge by day 40 as the primary endpoint, we used univariate followed by stepwise multivariate proportional hazard models to develop a risk score on one-half the data set, validated on the remainder, and converted the risk score into a patient-level predictive probability of 40-day mortality based on the combined dataset.
Results: The study population consisted of 3123 hospitalized COVID-19 patients; median age 63 years; 60% were men; 42% had >3 coexisting conditions. 713 (23%) patients died within 40 days of hospitalization for COVID-19. From 22 potential candidate factors 6 were found to be independent predictors of mortality and were included in the risk score model: age, respiratory rate ≥25/minute upon hospital presentation, oxygenation <94% on hospital presentation, and pre-hospital comorbidities of hypertension, coronary artery disease, or chronic renal disease. The risk score was highly prognostic of mortality in a training set and confirmatory set yielding in the combined dataset a hazard ratio of 1.80 (95% CI, 1.72, 1.87) for one unit increases. Using observed mortality within 20 equally sized bins of risk scores, a predictive model for an individual's 40-day risk of mortality was generated as -14.258 + 13.460*RS + 1.585*(RS-2.524)^2-0.403*(RS-2.524)^3. An online calculator of this 40-day COVID-19 mortality risk score is available at www.HackensackMeridianHealth.org/CovidRS.
Conclusions: A risk score using six variables is able to prognosticate mortality within 40-days of hospitalization for COVID-19.
Trial registration: Clinicaltrials.gov Identifier: NCT04347993.