COVID-19 fatality rates in hospitalized patients: systematic review and meta-analysis

Ana Macedo, Nilza Gonçalves, Cláudia Febra

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

99 Citations (Scopus)
23 Downloads (Pure)


Background: Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus. Although general and local public health report deathly cases, case fatality rates are still largely unknown. Thus, we sought to evaluate the mortality of COVID-19. Methods: We searched PubMed and EMBASE databases for articles evaluating the clinical characteristics of COVID-19 patients that included clinical outcomes, between December 2020 and 24 April 2020. Two authors performed an independent selection using predefined terms of search. Results: We retrieved 33 studies with a total of 13,398 patients with COVID-19 diagnosis. The mortality rate of the COVID‐19 patients was 17.1% (95% CI 12.7; 22.7, I2 = 96.9%). For general patients admitted to the hospital (excluding critical care-only studies) the mortality rate of the COVID‐19 was 11.5% (95% CI 7.7; 16.9, I2 = 96.7%). Among critical illness studies (n = 7) we found a 40.5% mortality (95% CI 31.2; 50.6, I2 = 91.8%). Conclusion: High COVID-19 mortality among general admitted patients and critical care cases should guide resources allocations and economic burden calculations during the pandemics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14-21
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals Of Epidemiology
Early online date2 Mar 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2021


  • coronavirus
  • COVID-19
  • Fatality
  • Mortality
  • outbreak
  • SARS-CoV-2


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