Developing a COVID-19 mortality risk prediction model when individual-level data are not available

Noam Barda, Dan Riesel, Amichay Akriv, Joseph Levy, Uriah Finkel, Gal Yona, Daniel Greenfeld, Shimon Sheiba, Jonathan Somer, Eitan Bachmat, Guy N. Rothblum, Uri Shalit, Doron Netzer, Ran Balicer, Noa Dagan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

77 Scopus citations


At the COVID-19 pandemic onset, when individual-level data of COVID-19 patients were not yet available, there was already a need for risk predictors to support prevention and treatment decisions. Here, we report a hybrid strategy to create such a predictor, combining the development of a baseline severe respiratory infection risk predictor and a post-processing method to calibrate the predictions to reported COVID-19 case-fatality rates. With the accumulation of a COVID-19 patient cohort, this predictor is validated to have good discrimination (area under the receiver-operating characteristics curve of 0.943) and calibration (markedly improved compared to that of the baseline predictor). At a 5% risk threshold, 15% of patients are marked as high-risk, achieving a sensitivity of 88%. We thus demonstrate that even at the onset of a pandemic, shrouded in epidemiologic fog of war, it is possible to provide a useful risk predictor, now widely used in a large healthcare organization.


  • epidemiology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Physics and Astronomy


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