1.1. Overview

Summary

CamCOPS is:

  • an application that runs on tablet devices including iPads, Android tablets, and desktop computers (Linux, Windows, iOS).
  • It offers many well-known questionnaires and more advanced tests relevant to cognitive and psychiatric assessment.
  • It is intended for clinical research by qualified professionals.
  • It offers structured and unstructured clinical record-keeping facilities.
  • It operates offline, so it can be used in places with no network reception.
  • It is compatible with UK NHS information security standards (though security is multifaceted and you will need to do extra things to meet these security requirements).
  • It periodically sends its data to a server of yours, which you control.
  • The server offers a web ‘front end’ (including printable task summaries, quantitative tracking information, and clinical summary views), a relational database ‘back end’ for powerful statistical analysis, and automatic export facilities including HL7- and file-based export of structured data or PDFs.

Additionally,

  • it’s open-source, so you can download and modify the source code. If you’re a programmer, it’s very easy to add your own tasks.

Internally,

  • the client app is written using C++ using Qt, an open-source cross-platform framework.
  • The server is written in Python and will run on any suitably configured web server.

Features for patients

  • Enter information electronically in a convenient format on a mobile or desktop device.
  • See automatically calculated summary information.

Features for clinicians

  • Enter information electronically in a convenient format on a mobile or desktop device.
  • Lock a device so one patient can’t see another’s information.
  • Have summary scores automatically calculated for you.
  • Upload data to your institution when you have a network connection.
  • Find and view tasks on the CamCOPS server.
  • View tasks in a quick HTML format, or a printable PDF format.
  • Track numerical changes graphically over time.
  • View quick “clinical text view” summaries of pertinent information.

Features for researchers

  • As for clinicians above.
  • View tasks with automatically calculated summary information.
  • Download detailed structured information in spreadsheet or database format.
  • View reports, including patient-finding queries.
  • A description of the database structure is built into the database itself (visible via XML or SQL comments).

Features for system administrators

  • Group security and group administrators.
    • Create groups.
    • Define a group’s preferred ID policy. (Fully identifiable for clinical use? Pseudonymised for a research study?)
    • Allow users to see groups, or groups to see other groups.
    • Create group administrators to manage groups independently.
  • Export facilities
    • Export via files, e-mails, HL7.
    • Export tasks as PDF, HTML, XML, or as a database.
    • For database export, add summary information or denormalize for subsequent anonymisation.
    • Define export recipients: what’s exported (e.g. by group, creation date), what task format you prefer, how the export should proceed. For a given export recipient, exports are typically incremental (i.e. only new stuff is sent).
    • Metadata support for Servelec’s RiO.
    • Export manually, or via a schedule (either via the operating system, e.g. via crontab, or via CamCOPS’s own scheduler).
    • “Push” export: when a task is uploaded, it’s exported.
  • Detailed audit trails.
  • Coding via SNOMED-CT.