Hewitt J, Carter B, Vilches-Moraga A et al.

The Lancet
Link to Pubmed / Journal

Published June 30, 2020

Frailty.net review by Gérard Bozet, MD
Posted November 5, 2020

What do we learn from the COPE study about the effect of frailty on survival in patients with COVID-19?

The COVID-19 pandemic places a lot of pressure on health-care systems. One of the components of decision-making for patients with COVID-19 is whether they are frail or not. A question which remains remain largely unanswered is the following: what is the effect of frailty on adult patients admitted to hospital with COVID-19?

The COVID-19 in Older PEople (COPE) study is an initiative that aimed to deep-dive into this issue. THE COPE study is an observational cohort study in 10 hospitals in the UK and 1 in Italy. Its aim was to establish the prevalence of frailty in patients with COVID-19 who were admitted to hospital and investigate its association with mortality and duration of hospital stay. The Clinical Frailty Scale (CFS) was used to assess patients. It showed that those classed as frail by the CFS were more likely to die from COVID-19. In addition, they stayed longer in hospital.

The results are very interesting as they show that disease outcomes were better predicted by frailty than either age or comorbidity. They encourage to use clinical frailty scales for decision-making in the real-life setting.

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