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BACKGROUND: Concerns have been raised that angiotensin-converting enzyme-inhibitors (ACE-I) and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) might facilitate transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 leading to more severe coronavirus disease (COVID-19) disease and an increased risk of mortality. We aimed to investigate the association between ACE-I/ARB treatment and risk of death amongst people with COVID-19 in the first 6 months of the pandemic. METHODS: We identified a cohort of adults diagnosed with either confirmed or probable COVID-19 (from 1 January to 21 June 2020) using computerized medical records from the Oxford-Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) Research and Surveillance Centre (RSC) primary care database. This comprised 465 general practices in England, United Kingdom with a nationally representative population of 3.7 million people. We constructed mixed-effects logistic regression models to quantify the association between ACE-I/ARBs and all-cause mortality among people with COVID-19, adjusted for sociodemographic factors, comorbidities, concurrent medication, smoking status, practice clustering, and household number. RESULTS: There were 9,586 COVID-19 cases in the sample and 1,463 (15.3%) died during the study period between 1 January 2020 and 21 June 2020. In adjusted analysis ACE-I and ARBs were not associated with all-cause mortality (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 1.02, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.85-1.21 and OR 0.84, 95% CI 0.67-1.07, respectively). CONCLUSION: Use of ACE-I/ARB, which are commonly used drugs, did not alter the odds of all-cause mortality amongst people diagnosed with COVID-19. Our findings should inform patient and prescriber decisions concerning continued use of these medications during the pandemic.

Original publication




Journal article


Fam Pract

Publication Date



COVID-19, medication, mortality