Prospective validation of the 4C prognostic models for adults hospitalised with COVID-19 using the ISARIC WHO Clinical Characterisation Protocol
Knight SR., Gupta RK., Ho A., Pius R., Buchan I., Carson G., Drake TM., Dunning J., Fairfield CJ., Gamble C., Green CA., Halpin S., Hardwick HE., Holden KA., Horby PW., Jackson C., Mclean KA., Merson L., Nguyen-Van-Tam JS., Norman L., Olliaro PL., Pritchard MG., Russell CD., Shaw CA., Sheikh A., Solomon T., Sudlow C., Swann OV., Turtle LCW., Openshaw PJM., Baillie JK., Docherty A., Semple MG., Noursadeghi M., Harrison EM.
Purpose To prospectively validate two risk scores to predict mortality (4C Mortality) and in-hospital deterioration (4C Deterioration) among adults hospitalised with COVID-19. Methods Prospective observational cohort study of adults (age ≥18 years) with confirmed or highly suspected COVID-19 recruited into the International Severe Acute Respiratory and emerging Infections Consortium (ISARIC) WHO Clinical Characterisation Protocol UK (CCP-UK) study in 306 hospitals across England, Scotland and Wales. Patients were recruited between 27 August 2020 and 17 February 2021, with at least 4 weeks follow-up before final data extraction. The main outcome measures were discrimination and calibration of models for in-hospital deterioration (defined as any requirement of ventilatory support or critical care, or death) and mortality, incorporating predefined subgroups. Results 76 588 participants were included, of whom 27 352 (37.4%) deteriorated and 12 581 (17.4%) died. Both the 4C Mortality (0.78 (0.77 to 0.78)) and 4C Deterioration scores (pooled C-statistic 0.76 (95% CI 0.75 to 0.77)) demonstrated consistent discrimination across all nine National Health Service regions, with similar performance metrics to the original validation cohorts. Calibration remained stable (4C Mortality: pooled slope 1.09, pooled calibration-in-the-large 0.12; 4C Deterioration: 1.00, –0.04), with no need for temporal recalibration during the second UK pandemic wave of hospital admissions. Conclusion Both 4C risk stratification models demonstrate consistent performance to predict clinical deterioration and mortality in a large prospective second wave validation cohort of UK patients. Despite recent advances in the treatment and management of adults hospitalised with COVID-19, both scores can continue to inform clinical decision making. Trial registration number NCT66726260.