COVID-19 hospitalizations in five California hospitals: a retrospective cohort study

Miriam Nuño, Yury García, Ganesh Rajasekar, Diego Pinheiro, Alec J. Schmidt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: The novel coronavirus pandemic has had a differential impact on communities of color across the US. The University of California hospital system serves a large population of people who are often underrepresented elsewhere. Data from hospital stays can provide much-needed localized information on risk factors for severe cases and/or death. Methods: Patient-level retrospective case series of laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 hospital admissions at five UC hospitals (N = 4730). Odds ratios of ICU admission, death, and a composite of both outcomes were calculated with univariate and multivariate logistic regression based on patient characteristics, including sex, race/ethnicity, and select comorbidities. Associations between comorbidities were quantified and visualized with a correlation network. Results: Overall mortality rate was 7.0% (329/4,730). ICU mortality rate was 18.8% (225/1,194). The rate of the composite outcome (ICU admission and/or death) was 27.4% (1298/4730). Comorbidity-controlled odds of a composite outcome were increased for age 75–84 (OR 1.47, 95% CI 1.11–1.93) and 85–59 (OR 1.39, 95% CI 1.04–1.87) compared to 18–34 year-olds, males (OR 1.39, 95% CI 1.21–1.59) vs. females, and patients identifying as Hispanic/Latino (OR 1.35, 95% CI 1.14–1.61) or Asian (OR 1.43, 95% CI 1.23–1.82) compared to White. Patients with 5 or more comorbidities were exceedingly likely to experience a composite outcome (OR 2.74, 95% CI 2.32–3.25). Conclusions: Males, older patients, those with multiple pre-existing comorbidities, and those identifying as Hispanic/Latino or Asian experienced an increased risk of ICU admission and/or death. These results are consistent with reported risks among the Hispanic/Latino population elsewhere in the United States, and confirm multiple concerns about heightened risk among the Asian population in California.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number938
JournalBMC Infectious Diseases
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2021


  • Comorbidities
  • Composite outcome
  • Coronavirus disease 2019
  • Hospitalization
  • In-hospital mortality
  • Intensive care unit
  • Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases


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