Clinical profile and treatment of COVID-19 patients: experiences from an Ethiopian treatment center

Seid Getahun Abdela, Seid Hassen Abegaz, Wondmagegn Demsiss, Koku Sisay Tamirat, Saskia van Henten, Johan van Griensven

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COVID-19 is not well studied in Africa. Understanding the clinical profile and management of COVID-19 will help to plan better prevention and treatment strategies taking the local context into consideration. In this study, we described the clinical profile, treatment used, and outcomes of COVID-19 patients in one of the COVID-19 treatment centers of Ethiopia, Boru Meda Hospital. An institution-based retrospective cross-sectional study was carried out using medical records of COVID-19 patients who were admitted to Boru Meda Hospital with a positive reverse transcription (RT)-PCR result from May 9, 2020 to September 20, 2020. All patients with a positive RT-PCR were admitted to the hospital, regardless of symptom and severity status. A total of 279 COVID-19 patients were included in the final analysis. The median age of patients was 28 years (interquartile range 23-40). The majority (69.5%) were male. Around a quarter (n = 73; 26.2%) of the patients were symptomatic, of which cough (n = 49; 67.1%) and fever (n = 32; 43.8%) were common symptoms. Among symptomatic patients, 48 (65.8%) were mild, four (5.5%) moderate, 12 (16.4%) severe, and nine (12.3%) were critical. The case fatality rate was 2.1%. Hypertension, age older than 25 years, and HIV/AIDS were significantly associated with symptomatic infection. In this study, most of the COVID-19 patients were asymptomatic. However, the proportion of severe and critical patients among those with symptoms was high. More studies are needed to assess the effect of HIV/AIDS on the severity and mortality of COVID-19.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAmerican Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)532-536
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - 2021


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