Thesis Defense about the Clinical Characteristics of Hospitalized COVID-19 Patients in Palestine

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Researcher Ibrahim Sabbah from the Health Informatics Graduate Program in Arab American University defended his thesis that was supervised by Prof. Mohammad Awad and Dr. Shahinaz Najjar. In his thesis that was entitled “Clinical Characteristics of the Hospitalized COVID-19 Patients in Palestine” Ibrahim used the (descriptive analytical approach using artificial intelligence methods), and he classified the COVID-19 patients in terms of risk, using statistical methods and artificial intelligence algorithms. This research study aimed to show an understanding and improve the knowledge related to the clinical and diagnostic fields for COVID-19 patients in Palestine using the traditional statistics and the artificial intelligence tools to develop a model that can predict the future health status for hospitalized patients.

This study is the first of its kind in Palestine, and the third globally that used the artificial intelligence algorithms to predict future patient status and behavior, and this will in turn help in serving the medical sector in Palestine to prepare for what is coming, from the strategic planning to resources distribution to increasing the capacity of hospitals and health facilities according to the health status of patients and their medical needs.

This quantitative research used the descriptive analytical approach on 199 patients during their stay in hospitals, as a full review for the medical records from two hospitals in the West Bank was done in the period between March 19th, 2020 and July 20th, 2020. This included the clinical data, the laboratory tests, the clinical notes and the treatment plan during the first days when they are hospitalized.

This Study was done into two phases:

The first phase: a comprehensive descriptive analysis for patients’ data and relate between each variable of data and the health status from one hand and the severity of symptoms from the other hand (intense symptoms or light symptoms).

مناقشة رسالة ماجستير في الجامعة حول الخصائص السريرية لمرضى كوفيد-19 المدخلين للمستشفيات في فلسطين


The second phase: using the data of the severity of the disease that resulted from the first phase, to use it in the artificial intelligence algorithms to develop an algorithm that can predict the future status of a patient. The researcher also consulted experts in this field such as (doctors of intensive care units) and took into consideration the old studies of this field. The artificial inelegance tools succeeded to predict the health status of patients with a good accuracy of 71% - 74% (the capability to accurately predict the level of the severity of symptoms).

مناقشة رسالة ماجستير في الجامعة حول الخصائص السريرية لمرضى كوفيد-19 المدخلين للمستشفيات في فلسطين


The committee of Prof. MMohammad Awad- the supervisor, Dr. Shahinaz Najjar- a co-supervisor, Dr. Yousef Mimi- inner examiner from Arab American University and Dr. Ameera Shaheen- the external examiner from An-Najah National University and a member in Epidemiological Committee in Palestine decided at the end of the defense to grant Ibrahim Sabbah the Masters’ Degree.