COVID-19: intensive care units, mechanical ventilators, and latent mortality profiles associated with case-fatality in Brazil.
Cad Saude Publica. 2020;36(5):e00080020
Authors: Moreira RDS
In response to the accelerated increase in the number of COVID-19 cases, countries must increase their supply of beds in intensive care units (ICUs). Respiratory diseases, neoplasms, cardiopathies and hypertension, and diabetes are associated with higher COVID-19 case-fatality. The study aimed to identify the regions of Brazil with higher specific mortality rates from these comorbidities and the regions with the greatest shortage of ICU beds and mechanical ventilators. A cross-sectional ecological study was performed in which the units of analysis were the country's Health Regions. Data were obtained from Brazilian Health Informatics Department - DATASUS (National Registry of Healthcare Establishments - 2019, Mortality Information Systems - 2017, and Population Projections - 2017). We calculated the disease group-specific mortality rates for hypertension, neoplasms, diabetes, cardiac diseases, respiratory diseases and the rates of total ICU beds, private ICU beds, ICU beds in the Brazilian Unified National Health System (SUS), and ventilators in the SUS, per 100,000 inhabitants. The mortality profile was determined by latent profiles analysis, and the cluster analysis of ICU beds and ventilators used the spatial scan method. Kernel maps were constructed for the data's visualization. Level of significance was set at 5%. Four latent mortality profiles were observed. The Health Regions with the highest mean mortality rates were located in regions with shortages of ICU beds and ventilators, especially in parts of the Northeast, Southeast, and South of Brazil. The spatial localization of regions with both the highest mortality and shortages of ICU beds/ventilators requires attention by policymakers and public planners to deal efficiently and fairly with the COVID-19 epidemic in Brazil.
PMID: 32428072 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]