Background: Understanding the characteristics of the Covid-19 pandemic in different geographical regions, ethnic and socioeconomic settings are of emerging importance. This study presents the demographic and clinical features of SARS-CoV-2 infected patients in a large private healthcare center in Santiago, Chile, during the first month of the pandemic.
Methods: We analyzed the demographics, laboratory and clinical characteristics including severity and outcome of all patients diagnosed with Covid-19 during the first month of the pandemic. SARS-2-CoV infection was confirmed by RT-PCR in nosopharyngeal samples. The primary outcome was a composite of ICU admission or all-cause, in-hospital mortality. Clinical and laboratory parameters of hospitalized patients were analyzed regarding their association with the primary outcome.
Results: From March 3 to April 4, 2020, 3679 individuals were tested for SARS-CoV-2 in our hospital. Of those, 381 had Covid-19 and were included into this analysis. Most patients (99.2%) were Chileans, 12% returning from recent travel. The median age was 39 years (IQR 31-49) and 52% were female. A total of 88 patients (23.1%) were hospitalized; 18 (3.7%) required ICU and/or died. The overall mortality was 0.7%. Increased body mass index (BMI) and elevated C-reactive protein (CRP) were independently associated with ICU care or death.
Conclusion: During the first weeks of the pandemic in Chile, most Covid-19 patients were young, with low rates of hospitalization, ICU requirement, and fatality. BMI and CRP on admission were predictors for severity. Our data provide important information on the clinical course and outcome of Covid-19 in a Latin American setting.