Many countries are challenged by the medical resources required for COVID-19 detection which necessitates the development of a low-cost, rapid tool to detect and diagnose the virus effectively for a large numbers of tests. Although a chest X-Ray scan is a useful candidate tool the images generated by the scans must be analyzed accurately and quickly if large numbers of tests are to be processed. COVID-19 causes bilateral pulmonary parenchymal ground-glass and consolidative pulmonary opacities, sometimes with a rounded morphology and a peripheral lung distribution. In this work, we aim to extract rapidly from chest X-Ray images the similar small regions that may contain the identifying features of COVID-19. This paper therefore proposes a hybrid COVID-19 detection model based on an improved marine predators algorithm (IMPA) for X-Ray image segmentation. The ranking-based diversity reduction (RDR) strategy is used to enhance the performance of the IMPA to reach better solutions in fewer iterations. RDR works on finding the particles that couldn't find better solutions within a consecutive number of iterations, and then moving those particles towards the best solutions so far. The performance of IMPA has been validated on nine chest X-Ray images with threshold levels between 10 and 100 and compared with five state-of-art algorithms: equilibrium optimizer (EO), whale optimization algorithm (WOA), sine cosine algorithm (SCA), Harris-hawks algorithm (HHA), and salp swarm algorithms (SSA). The experimental results demonstrate that the proposed hybrid model outperforms all other algorithms for a range of metrics. In addition, the performance of our proposed model was convergent on all numbers of thresholds level in the Structured Similarity Index Metric (SSIM) and Universal Quality Index (UQI) metrics.