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Psychological factors and hospitalisations for COVID-19: Prospective cohort study of the general population

Psychological factors and hospitalisations for COVID-19: Prospective cohort study of the general population
Psychological factors and hospitalisations for COVID-19: Prospective cohort study of the general population
Background: while certain infectious diseases have been linked to socioeconomic disadvantage, mental health problems, and lower cognitive function, relationships with COVID-19 are either uncertain or untested. Our objective was to examine the association of a range of psychosocial factors with hospitalisation for COVID-19.

Methods: UK Biobank, a prospective cohort study, comprises around half a million people who were aged 40–69 years at study induction between 2006 and 2010 when information on psychosocial factors and covariates were captured. Hospitalisations for COVID-19 were ascertained between 16th March and 26th April 2020.

Results: there were 908 hospitalisations for COVID-19 in an analytical sample of 431,051 England-based study members. In age- and sex-adjusted analyses, an elevated risk of COVID-19 was related to disadvantaged levels of education (odds ratio; 95% confidence interval: 2.05; 1.70, 2.47), income (2.00; 1.63, 2,47), area deprivation (2.20; 1.86, 2.59), occupation (1.39; 1.14, 1.69), psychological distress (1.58; 1.32, 1.89), mental health (1.50; 1.25, 1.79), neuroticism (1.19; 1.00, 1.42), and performance on two tests of cognitive function – verbal and numerical reasoning (2.66; 2.06, 3.34) and reaction speed (1.27; 1.08, 1.51). These associations were graded (p-value for trend ≤ 0.038) such that effects were apparent across the full psychosocial continua. After mutual adjustment for these characteristics plus ethnicity, comorbidity, and lifestyle factors, only the relationship between lower cognitive function as measured using the reasoning test and risk of the infection remained (1.98; 1.38, 2.85).

Conclusions: a range of psychosocial factors revealed associations with hospitalisation for COVID-19 of which the relation with cognitive function, a marker of health literacy, was most robust.
0889-1591
Batty, G.D.
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Deary, Ian
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Luciano, M.
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Altschul, Drew M.
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Kivimäki, Mika
a5788d83-a59c-477e-9ae9-8b7896ed098a
Gale, Catharine
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Batty, G.D.
bf322937-2cfb-4174-b5cb-dc016f0d0b8a
Deary, Ian
ea507b80-f98b-44d3-be7e-d93316f2e70d
Luciano, M.
d4e6c97b-27ed-4eff-a01f-c68d96ac8631
Altschul, Drew M.
733a0f68-fe0b-424a-a659-0bd19bf40dff
Kivimäki, Mika
a5788d83-a59c-477e-9ae9-8b7896ed098a
Gale, Catharine
5bb2abb3-7b53-42d6-8aa7-817e193140c8

Batty, G.D., Deary, Ian, Luciano, M., Altschul, Drew M., Kivimäki, Mika and Gale, Catharine (2020) Psychological factors and hospitalisations for COVID-19: Prospective cohort study of the general population. Brain, Behavior and Immunity, 89. (doi:10.1016/j.bbi.2020.06.021).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Background: while certain infectious diseases have been linked to socioeconomic disadvantage, mental health problems, and lower cognitive function, relationships with COVID-19 are either uncertain or untested. Our objective was to examine the association of a range of psychosocial factors with hospitalisation for COVID-19.

Methods: UK Biobank, a prospective cohort study, comprises around half a million people who were aged 40–69 years at study induction between 2006 and 2010 when information on psychosocial factors and covariates were captured. Hospitalisations for COVID-19 were ascertained between 16th March and 26th April 2020.

Results: there were 908 hospitalisations for COVID-19 in an analytical sample of 431,051 England-based study members. In age- and sex-adjusted analyses, an elevated risk of COVID-19 was related to disadvantaged levels of education (odds ratio; 95% confidence interval: 2.05; 1.70, 2.47), income (2.00; 1.63, 2,47), area deprivation (2.20; 1.86, 2.59), occupation (1.39; 1.14, 1.69), psychological distress (1.58; 1.32, 1.89), mental health (1.50; 1.25, 1.79), neuroticism (1.19; 1.00, 1.42), and performance on two tests of cognitive function – verbal and numerical reasoning (2.66; 2.06, 3.34) and reaction speed (1.27; 1.08, 1.51). These associations were graded (p-value for trend ≤ 0.038) such that effects were apparent across the full psychosocial continua. After mutual adjustment for these characteristics plus ethnicity, comorbidity, and lifestyle factors, only the relationship between lower cognitive function as measured using the reasoning test and risk of the infection remained (1.98; 1.38, 2.85).

Conclusions: a range of psychosocial factors revealed associations with hospitalisation for COVID-19 of which the relation with cognitive function, a marker of health literacy, was most robust.

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Accepted/In Press date: 14 June 2020
e-pub ahead of print date: 17 June 2020
Published date: 1 October 2020

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 451034
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/451034
ISSN: 0889-1591
PURE UUID: 67ba849c-3719-47a8-ae8a-971bf879b2db
ORCID for Catharine Gale: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3361-8638

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Date deposited: 03 Sep 2021 16:31
Last modified: 13 Aug 2022 01:35

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Contributors

Author: G.D. Batty
Author: Ian Deary
Author: M. Luciano
Author: Drew M. Altschul
Author: Mika Kivimäki
Author: Catharine Gale ORCID iD

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