1887
Volume 2021, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 0253-8253
  • EISSN: 2227-0426

Abstract

Introduction: The presence of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) and its associated disease, COVID-19 has had an enormous impact on the operations of the emergency department (ED), particularly the triage area. The aim of the study was to derive and validate a prediction rule that would be applicable to Qatar’s adult ED population to predict COVID-19-positive patients.

Methods: This is a retrospective study including adult patients. The data were obtained from the electronic medical records (EMR) of the Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) for three EDs. Data from the Hamad General Hospital ED were used to derive and internally validate a prediction rule (Q-PREDICT). The Al Wakra Hospital ED and Al Khor Hospital ED data formed an external validation set consisting of the same time frame. The variables in the model included the weekly ED COVID-19-positivity rate and the following patient characteristics: region (nationality), age, acuity, cough, fever, tachypnea, hypoxemia, and hypotension. All statistical analyses were executed with Stata 16.1 (Stata Corp). The study team obtained appropriate institutional approval.

Results: The study included 45,663 adult patients who were tested for COVID-19. Out of these, 47% (n = 21461) were COVID-19 positive. The derivation-set model had very good discrimination (c = 0.855, 95% Confidence intervals (CI) 0.847–0.861). Cross-validation of the model demonstrated that the validation-set model (c = 0.857, 95% CI 0.849–0.863) retained high discrimination.

A high Q-PREDICT score ( ≥ 13) is associated with a nearly 6-fold increase in the likelihood of being COVID-19 positive (likelihood ratio 5.9, 95% CI 5.6–6.2), with a sensitivity of 84.7% (95% CI, 84.0%–85.4%). A low Q-PREDICT ( ≤ 6) is associated with a nearly 20-fold increase in the likelihood of being COVID-19 negative (likelihood ratio 19.3, 95% CI 16.7–22.1), with a specificity of 98.7% (95% CI 98.5%–98.9%).

Conclusion: The Q-PREDICT is a simple scoring system based on information readily collected from patients at the front desk of the ED and helps to predict COVID-19 status at triage. The scoring system performed well in the internal and external validation on datasets obtained from the state of Qatar.

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2021-08-11
2021-09-20
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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): COVID positive , COVID-19 , emergency department , predict , Qatar and triage
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