Complexity and drug utilization profiles of COVID-19 patients as predictors of infection

The recent and unexpected outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has found healthcare systems unprepared to deal with it, leading to their collapse.

Specifically, the more severe prognoses found in COVID-19-positive patients were mostly associated with the patient’s frailty and complexity in terms of prior or ongoing disease, number of comorbidities, and polypharmacy regimens. Therefore, clustering patients into risk profiles represents an important preventive measure to identify the most frail population and to facilitate the adoption of appropriate preventive and therapeutic measures.

In this context, since the first pandemic wave, the Center has focused part of its research activity on SARS-CoV-2, investigating the pharmacological and clinical history of COVID-19 patients in the Campania Region.

Within the project, the Center has:

  • Supported the Directorate General for Health Protection and, in particular, the Task Force, during the first pandemic wave, through: creation of a web application for geo-referencing data with the possibility of viewing the chronological evolution of COVID positive cases stratified by single municipality; evaluation of the impact of health policies implemented by the Campania Region;
  • Conducted retrospective observational analysis aimed at evaluating the Drug Utilization profiles of the COVID-19 cohort in terms of prevalence of use, with the aim of identifying the treatment profiles of the COVID-19 cohort as a proxy for the complexity of subjects pre-infected with the virus;
  • Created, developed and validated in collaboration with the HealthCare Research centre and Pharmacoepidemiology – Department of Statistics at University Milano-Bicocca, a predictive algorhythm that through a prognostic score (SARS CoV2 Infection Score – SIS) is able to identify the patients most at risk of contracting COVID-19 infection. In particular, results have been obtained showing that as the value of the score, representative of the complexity and fragility of the patient, increases, the risk of viral infection increases;
  • Partecipated to the Alert CoV program whose promoters are the National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT), Istituto Superiore di Sanità (ISS) and the Center for Healthcare Research & Pharmacoepidemiology. The priority focus of this program is to develop an epidemiological ALERT model for the early identification of epidemic outbreaks;
  • Actively collaborating with the research group Epichron from the Aragon Health Search Institute (IIS Aragon) in Zaragoza (Spain) with the aim of comparing two different European regions severely affected by the SARS-CoV-2 epidemic and to detect possible congruencies and discrepancies between the drug utilization profiles of the two COVID-19 populations.

In progress

Available results:

COVID-19 and Drugs

Creation of a predictive score

COVID-19 in Spain

Editorial COVID-19