Document Type

Article

Publication Title

Frontiers in Public Health

Abstract

The COVID-19 was declared a pandemic by WHO on 03/2020 has claimed millions of lives worldwide. The US leads all countries in COVID-19-related deaths. Individual level (preexisting conditions and demographics) and county-level (availability of resources) factors have been attributed to increased risk of COVID-19-related deaths. This study builds on previous studies to assess the relationship between county-level resources and COVID-19 mortality among 2,438 US counties. We merged 2019 data from AHA, AHRF, and USA FACTS. The dependent variable was the total number of COVID-19-related deaths. Independent variables included county-level resources: (1) hospital staffing levels (FTE RNs, hospitalists, and intensivists) per 10,000 population; (2) hospital capacity (occupancy rate, proportion of teaching hospitals, and number of airborne infection control rooms per 10,000 population); and (3) macroeconomic resources [per capita income and location (urban/rural)]. We controlled for population 65+, racial/ethnic minority, and COVID-19 deaths per 1,000 population. A negative binomial regression was used. Hospital staffing per 10,000 population {FTE RN [IRR = 0.997; CI (0.995–0.999)], FTE hospitalists [IRR = 0.936; CI (0.897–0.978)], and FTE intensivists [IRR = 0.606; CI (0.516–0.712)]} was associated with lower COVID-19-related deaths. Hospital occupancy rate, proportion of teaching hospitals, and total number of airborne infection control rooms per 10,000 population were positively associated with COVID-19-related deaths. Per capita income and being in an urban county were positively associated with COVID-19-related deaths. Finally, the proportion of 65+, racial/ethnic minorities, and the number of cases were positively associated with COVID-19-related deaths. Our findings suggest that focusing on maintaining adequate hospital staffing could improve COVID-19 mortality.

DOI

https://doi.org/10.3389/fpubh.2023.1098571

Publication Date

2023

PubMed ID

36935689

College or School

School of Health Professions

Comments

APC Fund Awardee: Dr. Ferhat Zengul, Associate Professor, School of Health Professions Award Amount: $1,400.00

Supplemental Associated Link

https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpubh.2023.1098571/full

Share

COinS