Mortality decreased for COVID-19 ICU patients over time.

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Mortality decreased for COVID-19 ICU patients over time

—For adults with COVID-19-related critical illness admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU), mortality has decreased over time, according to a study published online Jan. 19 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

George L. Anesi, M.D., from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and colleagues describe the epidemiology of COVID-19-related critical illness, including trends in outcomes and care delivery, in a multihospital retrospective cohort study. Data were included for 468 patients with COVID-19-related critical illness who were admitted to an ICU during the initial surge of the pandemic, from March 1 to May 11, 2020; 68.2 and 25.9 percent were treated with mechanical ventilation and vasopressors, respectively.

The researchers found that the all-cause, 28-day in-hospital mortality rate was 29.9 percent, median ICU stay was eight days, median hospital stay was 13 days, and the all-cause 30-day readmission rate was 10.8 percent. Over time, there was a decrease seen in mortality, from 43.5 to 19.2 percent between the first and last 15-day periods; no change was seen in patient acuity and other factors.

“Centers should anticipate a growing population of survivors of COVID-19-related critical illness as the pandemic continues,” the authors write. “Further studies are necessary to confirm this result and to investigate causal mechanisms.”

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical and medical device industries.

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