Background Coronavirus disease MESHD 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome MESHD coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), which was first identified in December 2019 in Wuhan. This study mainly analyzed the clinical characteristics, imaging features, and prognosis of patients with COVID-19 in Suining, one of China's fourth-tier cities, and Wuhan in 2019 and compared data between the 2 cities. Methods A retrospective analysis of the epidemiological history, clinical data, symptom presentation, laboratory test results, chest computed tomography (CT) imaging features, treatment measures and prognosis of 68 patients with COVID-19 diagnosed at Wuhan Red Cross Hospital and 17 patients with COVID-19 diagnosed at Suining Central Hospital from January 23, 2020, to February 27, 2020, was conducted. Results 1) The incidence rate of COVID-19 in Wuhan was 52.99‱, and the incidence rate in Suining was 0.04‱. The median age TRANS of patients with COVID-19 was 40.71 years old in Suining and 56.04 years old in Wuhan. The age TRANS of patients with COVID-19 in Wuhan was significantly older than that of patients with COVID-19 in Suining. Among the 68 patients with COVID-19 in Wuhan, 30 (44.1%) had hypertension MESHD hypertension HP, and 25 (36.8%) had diabetes. Three out of the 17 patients in Suining (17.6%) had hypertension MESHD hypertension HP, and 2 patients (11.8%) had diabetes. The proportion of patients with diabetes or hypertension MESHD hypertension HP in Wuhan was significantly higher than that in Suining (P<0.05). In the clinical classification, there were 1 (5.9%) and 23 (33.8%) patients with severe COVID-19 in Suining and Wuhan, respectively. The proportion of patients with severe COVID-19 in Wuhan was significantly higher than that in Suining (P<0.05). Fever MESHD Fever HP and cough MESHD cough HP were the most common clinical symptoms, with 9 cases (52.9%) and 8 cases (47.1%) in Suining, respectively, and 54 cases (79.4%) and 42 cases (61.8%) in Wuhan, respectively. There was 1 patient (5.9%) with COVID-19 with dyspnea MESHD dyspnea HP in Suining and 23 patients (33.8%) with COVID-19 with dyspnea MESHD dyspnea HP in Wuhan; the difference was statistically significant (P<0.05). Chest CT showed that lung consolidation occurred in 2 (11.8%) and 26 (38.2%) patients with COVID-19 in Suining and Wuhan, respectively. The proportion of lung consolidation in patients in Wuhan was significantly higher than that in patients in Suining (P<0.05). The laboratory tests suggested that percentage ofelevated C-reactive protein (CRP) (58.8%), ALT (33.8%), blood SERO glucose (45.6%), creatine kinase (CK) (33.8%) or D-dimer (47.1%) of patients in Wuhan were significantly increased than those in Suining (29.4%, 5.9%, 17.6%, 5.9%, and 17.7%, respectively). Moreover, the average length of hospital stay of patients in Wuhan was 17.49 days, which was significantly longer than that of patients in Suining (12.29 days). Conclusions The incidence of COVID-19 in fourth-tier cities, Suining, in China was significantly lower than that in Wuhan, and the disease MESHD severity was generally lower than that in Wuhan, with mostly good prognoses. Advanced age TRANS, diabetes, and hypertension MESHD hypertension HP are important factors that aggravate COVID-19, while elevated CRP, ALT, blood SERO glucose, CK, and D-dimer levels are important indicators for severe disease MESHD.