Clinical Predictive Models for COVID-19: Systematic Study

17 May 2020  ·  Patrick Schwab, August DuMont Schütte, Benedikt Dietz, Stefan Bauer ·

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a rapidly emerging respiratory disease caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Due to the rapid human-to-human transmission of SARS-CoV-2, many healthcare systems are at risk of exceeding their healthcare capacities, in particular in terms of SARS-CoV-2 tests, hospital and intensive care unit (ICU) beds and mechanical ventilators. Predictive algorithms could potentially ease the strain on healthcare systems by identifying those who are most likely to receive a positive SARS-CoV-2 test, be hospitalised or admitted to the ICU. Here, we study clinical predictive models that estimate, using machine learning and based on routinely collected clinical data, which patients are likely to receive a positive SARS-CoV-2 test, require hospitalisation or intensive care. To evaluate the predictive performance of our models, we perform a retrospective evaluation on clinical and blood analysis data from a cohort of 5644 patients. Our experimental results indicate that our predictive models identify (i) patients that test positive for SARS-CoV-2 a priori at a sensitivity of 75% (95% CI: 67%, 81%) and a specificity of 49% (95% CI: 46%, 51%), (ii) SARS-CoV-2 positive patients that require hospitalisation with 0.92 AUC (95% CI: 0.81, 0.98), and (iii) SARS-CoV-2 positive patients that require critical care with 0.98 AUC (95% CI: 0.95, 1.00). In addition, we determine which clinical features are predictive to what degree for each of the aforementioned clinical tasks. Our results indicate that predictive models trained on routinely collected clinical data could be used to predict clinical pathways for COVID-19, and therefore help inform care and prioritise resources.

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