Hospital load and increased COVID-19 related mortality in Israel

Hagai Rossman, Tomer Meir, Jonathan Somer, Smadar Shilo, Rom Gutman, Asaf Ben Arie, Eran Segal, Uri Shalit, Malka Gorfine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations

Abstract

The spread of Coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) has led to many healthcare systems being overwhelmed by the rapid emergence of new cases. Here, we study the ramifications of hospital load due to COVID-19 morbidity on in-hospital mortality of patients with COVID-19 by analyzing records of all 22,636 COVID-19 patients hospitalized in Israel from mid-July 2020 to mid-January 2021. We show that even under moderately heavy patient load (>500 countrywide hospitalized severely-ill patients; the Israeli Ministry of Health defined 800 severely-ill patients as the maximum capacity allowing adequate treatment), in-hospital mortality rate of patients with COVID-19 significantly increased compared to periods of lower patient load (250–500 severely-ill patients): 14-day mortality rates were 22.1% (Standard Error 3.1%) higher (mid-September to mid-October) and 27.2% (Standard Error 3.3%) higher (mid-December to mid-January). We further show this higher mortality rate cannot be attributed to changes in the patient population during periods of heavier load.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1904
JournalNature Communications
Volume12
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2021
Externally publishedYes

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© 2021, The Author(s).

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