12 Dec John Hopkins Covid-19 Risk Calculator May Improve Vaccine Distribution
MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Nilanjan Chatterjee, PhD
Bloomberg Distinguished Professor
Departments of Biostatistics and Epidemiology
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?
Response: Calculation of risks or severe COVID-19 disease and mortality for individuals in the general population can help to prioritize prevention efforts, such as early vaccination. We developed a model to estimate risks for COVID-19 mortality for currently uninflected individuals based on sociodemographic factors, pre-existing conditions and local pandemic intensity. The model captures factors associated with both risk of infection and complications after infection.
The model was developed using information from a large UK based cohort study called OpenSAFELY, and was adapted to the US population based on information on mortality rate associated with age and race/ethnicity available through CDC. The model also utilizes information on state level projected death rates from pandemic forecasting models.
MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?
Response: The main finding was that there is a wide variation in risk across individuals and communities. In particular, we show number of high-risk individuals vary widely across US cities, counties and states. This information may help vaccine distribution.
MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?
Response: Understanding risk at individual and community level may lead saving lives through development of more targeted strategies for prevention and better adherence to public health guidance on mask wearing, hand washing and other prevention measures.
MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?
Response: The field needs large population based cohort studies in the US setting to better understand risk factors, and develop and validate risk models.
MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add? Any disclosures?
Response: There are many caveats in our risk model. It does not include all known risk factors, such as front line occupation which can increase risk of exposure. There are also many unknown factors. The model also requires assumption about how all the different risk factors act together to determine an individual’s risk. We hope to continue to build the model with new risk information and validate in additional studies.
Assessment of Individual- and Community-level Risks for COVID-19 Mortality in the US and Implications for Vaccine Distribution
Jin Jin, Neha Agarwala, Prosenjit Kundu, Benjamin Harvey, Yuqi Zhang, Eliza Wallace,
medRxiv 2020.05.27.20115170; doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/2020.05.27.20115170
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