6. Using the web site

6.1. First

Log into CamCOPS via a web browser.

6.2. General navigation

Any time you see the CamCOPS logo (it’s at the top of most pages), you can click it to get back to the main menu.

6.3. Task, trackers, and clinical text views

Client devices upload tasks. You can view these individually in a variety of formats. You can also view numeric information over time for a patient in a tracker, and clinically relevant textual information for a patient in a clinical text view.

6.4. Set task filters

You can configure your CamCOPS session to filter tasks according to who, what, when, and administrative criteria. By default, no task filters are set.

Under who, you can specify an optional patient forename, surname, date of birth, sex, or any form of ID number in use on your server.

Under what, you can restrict to any subset of task types, and if you wish you can restrict to completed tasks. You can also specify text contents. For example, type in “paracetamol” to find clerkings that mention paracetamol anywhere.

Under when, you can specify start and/or end dates, to find tasks in that date range.

Under administrative criteria, you can restrict to specific uploading devices or users, or the group to which a task belongs.

As well as a “set filters” button, there is a “clear” button to clear all current filters.

6.5. View tasks

This page shows all tasks meeting your current filter criteria. Each task has hyperlinks to an HTML and a PDF version. Sometimes tasks are colour-coded (there’s a key at the bottom of the page).

The HTML view is fastest and has additional viewing options. However, you should not print the HTML view in a clinical environment, because it won’t have patient identifiers on each page. Use the PDF for that instead, or if you want to save the task as a single human-readable file.

When you view a task in HTML mode, there are some additional hyperlinks at the bottom:

  • View raw data as XML. This shows you the raw structure as XML, including stored data and calculated fields such as summary scores. One useful feature is that all fields have an associated comment, and these comments are displayed in the XML.
  • View anonymised version (HTML, PDF). This shows you a version with patient identification details hidden. It is not guaranteed to be free of identifying material, though; it makes no effort to remove patient details from free text, for example [5].
  • View PDF. A link to the PDF version.

(Administrators have additional options; see administrative options.)

PDF versions include patient identifiers on each page, to meet normal UK clinical standards, and if the task involved recording a clinician’s views or assessments, the PDF will include a template signature box for on-paper authentication by the clinician.

Specimen tasks in PDF format:

6.6. Trackers for numerical information

Many tasks produce numerical information, like total scores. Trackers allow you to view numerical information from these tasks, or a subset of them, over time. The resulting graphs are time-aligned within the tracker, across all tasks (i.e. all graphs have the same time axis).

Not all tasks offer trackers.

Some tasks offer more than one numerical value, and therefore provide more than one graph.

To configure a tracker, choose a patient by an ID number. You can, optionally, specify a start and/or end date, and you can restrict to specific tasks.

You can view trackers in HTML or PDF mode, or view the data used to generate them in XML format.

Specimen tracker:


Both trackers and CTVs collate information from multiple tasks. They therefore perform a consistency check to ensure that patient ID information is the same across all tasks. (Did someone mis-spell a name, for example – or worse, mis-file information by entering the wrong ID number?) Beware if the consistency check fails; you will need to ensure yourself that all the data relates to the same patient.

6.7. Clinical text views

Like a tracker, a clinical text view (CTV) collects information across many tasks for one patient. Like a tracker, a CTV is configured for a patient, and can be configured for a date range and/or a subset of tasks. Like a tracker (and like a book), a CTV flows from older to newer information. Unlike a tracker, a CTV produces text for each task, not numbers. The text is intended to be clinically useful. For example, simple questionnaires produce their summary information. The ACE-III produces its total but also its subscale scores. Clinical clerkings produce their full text. All tasks appear in the CTV, but some tasks simply indicate that they have been performed.

In the HTML view of a CTV, all tasks provide hyperlinks to the full representation of each task, so you can delve into more detail for any task of interest.

Specimen CTV:


Both trackers and CTVs collate information from multiple tasks. They therefore perform a consistency check to ensure that patient ID information is the same across all tasks. (Did someone mis-spell a name, for example – or worse, mis-file information by entering the wrong ID number?) Beware if the consistency check fails; you will need to ensure yourself that all the data relates to the same patient.

6.8. Research views

6.8.1. Basic research dump (fields and summaries)

This option allows you to download a spreadsheet or similar file that contains one worksheet for every current task [1], and includes raw data and summary measures (e.g. total scores).


For example, the PHQ-9 stores the answers for 9 symptom questions in fields q1 to q9, and one overall impact answer in the q10 field; it also stores information to link the record to the patient in question, and some administrative information (relating to record history, editing time, etc.)

However, it doesn’t store summary information on the server [6]; rather, summary measures are calculated on demand. For this task, summary measures include:

  • is_complete (Boolean): is the task complete (no missing values)?
  • total (integer): total score
  • n_core (integer): number of core depressive symptoms reaching threshold
  • n_other (integer): number of other depressive symptoms reaching threshold
  • n_total (integer): total number of symptoms reaching threshold
  • is_mds (Boolean): does this patient meet the PHQ9 criteria for major depressive syndrome?
  • is_ods (Boolean): does this patient meet the PHQ9 criteria for other depressive syndrome?
  • severity (text): textual description of depressive severity by the standard PHQ9 scoring method.

These summary measures are included in the research dumps.

You can choose to dump everything that you have permission for, or restrict to the criteria you’ve set in your current session filter, or specify tasks and/or groups manually.

The download formats include:

  • OpenOffice/LibreOffice spreadsheet (ODS) format;
  • Microsoft Excel (XLSX);
  • A ZIP file containing multiple TSV files, one per worksheet. This is the least human-friendly format, but is good for automatically importing into statistics packages.

6.8.2. Dump table data as SQL

This more sophisticated research dump generates a fully structured SQLite binary database of the data you select (or, if you prefer, the SQL text to create it). By default, BLOBs (binary large objects) are skipped, because they can be very large, but if you want, you can choose to include them.

You can choose the information you want exactly as for the basic research dump.

Some user information will be provided (e.g. user names), but security information (e.g. passwords) is removed prior to the download.

As for the basic research dump, summary information is added to tables as they are created. For example: the internal PHQ9 table contains scores for individual questions, but not the total (which is calculated dynamically). When you download the data, the total (amongst other things) is calculated and added to the data that you download (within the SQLite table or CSV file).

6.8.3. Inspect table definitions

This option allows you to view the database structure of the CamCOPS server database, as data definition language (DDL), meaning the subset of SQL used to create tables. In SQL dialects that support it (e.g. MySQL), the DDL contains comments for every field, usually in considerable detail, so viewing the DDL this is a good way of understanding how CamCOPS tasks store their data.

6.9. Reports

CamCOPS has a set of build-in reports; for example, to count tasks, or list client devices, or find patients by diagnostic inclusion/exclusion criteria. You can explore and run these from the Reports menu.

Reports are used in two stages: (1) configure, (2) run.

The configuration stage provides an interface to select options for the report. This generally includes the output format (e.g. HTML, TSV), and sometimes much more (e.g. for the reports to find patient by diagnosis). Once you’ve chosen the options, click “View Report”. What the configuration stage actually does is to generate a URL for the final report.

The HTML view of the report shows the configuration parameters, the results (page by page), and the SQL used to generate the report.

The TSV option gives you the data in tab-separate values (TSV) format.

When you view the report in HTML format, you will see that the browser’s URL contains your report configuration information. This means that you can save this report for later.

For example, suppose you regularly want to find patients between the ages of 20 to 65 inclusive, with an ICD-9-CM inclusion diagnosis of depression (e.g. 311) [2], excluding bipolar affective disorder (e.g. anything starting 296) or eating disorders (e.g. 307.1). You could create a report with these age restrictions and inclusion and exclusion diagnoses, and view it. The URL would look like this:


If you copy this URL, you can run the report again without having to configure it manually. Here’s an approximate ICD-10 equivalent (same age range; include F32% and F33%; exclude F30%, F31%, F50%):


To view a report’s SQL in a formatted state, paste it into an online SQL formatter [3].

6.10. Help

Click “CamCOPS documentation” for this manual.

6.11. Log out

Click “Log out” to end your CamCOPS session.


[1]“Current” means that this download will skip historical versions of tasks that have been edited, and just provide the latest version.
[2]ICD-9-CM diagnostic codes: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_ICD-9_codes_290%E2%80%93319:_mental_disorders
[3]e.g. https://sqlformat.org/; https://www.freeformatter.com/sql-formatter.html
[5]For a software product that takes de-identification seriously, see e.g. CRATE, described in Cardinal RN (2017), https://doi.org/10.1186/s12911-017-0437-1, and available from https://crateanon.readthedocs.io/.