In response to the impeding crisis in the Netherlands, and inline with the arguments presented by Hollander & Carr, one of the largest Dutch hospitals (the OLVG, located in Amsterdam) together with one of the largest tele-monitoring providers in the Netherlands, set out to develop a tele-monitoring program to triage and attend to potential COVID-19 cases in the general population.
Within days, in a joint effort, a tele-monitoring application that allows patients to register potential symptoms was created and released. The complete tele-monitoring system consists of a patient facing application, an interactive dashboard for healthcare providers, and a team of healthcare providers that monitors and evaluates the collected data at the level of individuals. Usage of this system, compared to standard offline care, speeds up the process of continuously triaging large groups of people over a longer period of time thus freeing up valuable resources.
Despite being conceived primarily to relieve the burden imposed on the healthcare system by making triage and monitoring more efficient, the resulting tele-monitoring application collects potentially valuable data. Acknowledging the societal value this data might have we have ensured that all regulations (ethical, legal) are in place to disclose anonymized versions of the resulting dataset to the scientific community.
Information about the study and setup
Large scale, real-time and longitudinal tele-monitoring of COVID-19 in the general population.
20-03-2020: dr. Herre Reesing, dr. Joris H. Janssen, dr. Paul Bresser, dr. Daan Dohmen, Prof. dr. Maurits Kaptein, Prof. dr. Maurice van den Bosch, Omid Golzarian.
Abstract: In this document we describe the initial setup of the large-scale, real-time, longitudinal tele-monitoring of COVID-19 symptoms study (DOC-COV) as setup in the Netherlands. Although the tele-monitoring effort is primarily conceived to alleviate the burden COVID-19 imposes on the healthcare system by allowing healthcare professionals to remotely triage, monitor and comfort potential COVID-19 cases, we believe the collected data is valuable: with this document we aim detail our data collection efforts such that the resulting data can meaningfully be used by the scientific community.
We encourage data requests by fellow researchers. A request can be filed by sending the answers to the following questions to firstname.lastname@example.org:
- Who are you? Please provide email, name, and affiliations.
- What would you like to use this data for? Please provide a short rationale for requesting this specific dataset.Who are you? Please provide email, name, and affiliations.
- What information do you need? Please state which data (i.e., which variables, over what time period, etc.) you are interested in. Note that the datasets grow large very quickly; please request only the subsets needed to answer your questions.
- How do you intend to disclose your results? We encourage open publication and sharing of any analysis code.
Note: We are trying actively to keep track of where this data is being used and for what purposes; before sharing any data we will ask you to sign a form stating that you will not disclose any of the raw data to third parties.
We are trying to handle data requests daily, but given the current situation we cannot make any guarantees. Data requests are handled by our scientific board consisting of:
- Prof. dr. Maurice van den Bosch (epidemiology) – OLVG
- Prof. dr. Rick Grobbee (epidemiology) – UMCU
- Prof. dr. Janneke van de Wijgert (infectious diseases) – UMCU
- Prof. dr. Niek de Wit (GP’s) – UMCU
- Dr. Billy Franks (Statisticus) – Julius Clinical
- Ir. Jan Boers (Secretary) – OLVG
We would like to close this document by reiterating that the primarily goal of the tele-monitoring system used in the DOC-COV study is to relieve the burden imposed on the healthcare system by making triage and monitoring more efficient. Therefore, along the way, not all the choices that we make are solely driven by scientific methodological rigor. Sometimes practical demands steer our decision making. We however sincerely believe that despite this, the resulting data are valuable: at the very least the data provide an understanding of the progression, over time, of early symptoms as experienced by patients while the crisis is ongoing. However, there might be many more uses, possibly ones that we did not foresee. Therefore, we encourage well motivated data requests. We hope the current document allows the scientific community to properly understand the data collection.