Clinical characteristics of COVID-19 in older adults. A retrospective study in long-term nursing homes in Catalonia
The natural history of COVID-19 and predictors of mortality in older adults need to be investigated to inform clinical operations and healthcare policy planning. A retrospective study took place in 80 long-term nursing homes in Catalonia, Spain collecting data from March 1st to May 31st, 2020. Demographic and clinical data from 2,092 RT-PCR confirmed cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection were registered, including structural characteristics of the facilities. Descriptive statistics to describe the demographic, clinical, and molecular characteristics of our sample were prepared, both overall and by their symptomatology was performed and an analysis of statistically significant bivariate differences and constructions of a logistic regression model were carried out to assess the relationship between variables. The incidence of the infection was 28%. 71% of the residents showed symptoms. Five major symptoms included: fever, dyspnea, dry cough, asthenia and diarrhea. Fever and dyspnea were by far the most frequent (50% and 28%, respectively). The presentation was predominantly acute and symptomatology persisted from days to weeks (mean 9.1 days, SD = 10,9). 16% of residents had confirmed pneumonia and 22% required hospitalization. The accumulated mortality rate was 21.75% (86% concentrated during the first 28 days at onset). A multivariate logistic regression analysis showed a positive predictive value for mortality for some variables such as age, pneumonia, fever, dyspnea, stupor refusal to oral intake and dementia (p<0.01 for all variables). Results suggest that density in the nursing homes did not account for differences in the incidence of the infection within the facilities. This study provides insights into the natural history of the disease in older adults with high dependency living in long-term nursing homes during the first pandemic wave of March-May 2020 in the region of Catalonia, and suggests that some comorbidities and symptoms have a strong predictive value for mortality.
Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2; COVID-19; 2019-nCoV; Nursing homes; Death rates
Meis-Pinheiro U, Lopez-Segui F, Walsh S, Ussi A, Santaeugenia S, Garcia-Navarro JA, et al. Clinical characteristics of COVID-19 in older adults. A retrospective study in long-term nursing homes in Catalonia. PLoS One. 2021 Jul 23;16(7):e0255141.
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