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Background: We sought to determine whether COPD conferred a higher risk for healthcare utilization in terms of hospitalization and clinical outcomes due to COVID-19.

Methods: A cohort study with covariate adjustment using multivariate logistic regression was conducted at the Cleveland Clinic Health System in Ohio and Florida. Symptomatic patients aged 35 years and older who were tested for SARS-CoV-2 between March 8 and May 13, 2020 were included.

Findings: 15,586 individuals tested for COVID-19 at the Cleveland Clinic between March 8, 2020 and May 13, 2020 met our inclusion criteria. 12.4% of COPD patients (164/1319) tested positive for COVID-19 compared to 16.6% (2363/14,267) of the non-COPD population. 48.2% (79/164) of COVID-19 positive COPD patients required hospitalization and 45.6% (36/79) required ICU admission. After adjustment for covariates, rates of COVID-19 infection were not significantly different than the non-COPD population (adj OR 0.97; CI: 0.89-1.05), but COPD patients had increased healthcare utilization as demonstrated by risk for hospitalization (adj OR 1.36; CI: 1.15-1.60), ICU admission (OR 1.20; CI: 1.02-1.40), and need for invasive mechanical ventilation (adj OR 1.49; CI: 1.28-1.73). Unadjusted risk for in-hospital mortality was higher in the COPD population (OR 1.51; CI: 1.14-1.96). After adjusting for covariates however, the risk for in-hospital mortality was not significantly different than the non-COPD population (adj OR 1.08: CI: 0.81-1.42).

Interpretation: Our analysis demonstrated that COPD patients with COVID-19 had a higher risk for healthcare utilization, although adjusted in-hospital mortality risk was not different than the non-COPD patients with COVID-19.

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EClinicalMedicine, v. 26, art. 100515