The Open Data Kit is an open-source toolkit for collecting, aggregating, managing and using data in resource-constrained environments. It allows offline collecting data and sending them after connection to the Internet is available. Besides a wide offer of tools to data collection, ODK is first of all the community. On its forum, ODK concentrates over 10 thousands of people!
ODK consists of many tools, some of the most important are:
- ODK Collect – an Android app that replaces paper-based forms.
- ODK Aggregate – a proven server for data storage and analysis tool.
- ODK Central – a modern server with a RESTful API.
- ODK Build – a drag-and-drop form designer.
- ODK Briefcase – a desktop tool that pulls and exports data from Aggregate and Collects.
This project is mostly used by governments and charity organizations in poor countries. Open Data Kit suite of tools helps social good projects collect critical data in the most challenging environments.
The mentioned ODK Collect tool is the core application of all ODK projects. This tool was created for Android users that allow them to fill out an electronic form instead of the paper equivalent and is available to download from eg. Google Play. In the world full of technology it is an easier way to reach answers from the farthermost audience. The application was created to work well without a continuous Internet connection.
The form of the survey is customized by its creator. The ODK Collect app gathers survey-based data and supports location, images, audio, and videos, barcodes, signatures, multiple-choice, or numeric answers. It is also possible to collect data from another app. ODK Collect is applicable in many fields- anywhere you need. It was used eg. to digitize natural surveys for better nature experience, collect descriptions of autopsies that help track global deaths or to manage the migration crisis in Greece.
More about the Open Data Kit project, tool, and community we were writing in the post: ODK Convening 2019.
This time, ODK Collect was used to help fight with the world crisis which we are facing now: the coronavirus (COVID-19) threat. Inspired by the World Health Organization – Open Data Kit teams digitized WHO’s Minimum Data Set Report Form which is the interim report for confirmed and probable cases. This electronic form is freely available for anyone to use in ODK. The Minimum Data Set Report asks for details of the user’ health: if the patient has symptoms like eg. fever, cough, runny nose, shortness of breath, nausea, diarrhea, etc. in the meantime the app asks if the date of the first occurred symptoms are known.
The next clinical information regarding the patient which the application asks is if there was collected the sample of the respiratory, and if yes- when and what type it was. The ODK Collect application is equipped with a calendar that easily allows pointing to the exact date you want to.
The next example of the information collected by The Minimum Data Set Report is if there was a baseline serum taken, and when it happened.
The Minimum Data Set Report was the ODK team initiative – it wasn’t commissioned by any client or a third party and is a step forward for the coronavirus threat fight.
You can get the form at https://forum.opendatakit.org/t/25647
The confirmation of the need for having this form of the questionnaire is its huge number of users – we already accumulated over 300 thousand users.
As you can see, the ODK Collect app is really simple and intuitive, but in case that there will be help needed, Nafudi organization declared to support any organization to go through the application, especially in contact tracing, decision support, community education, strategic mapping, and case management. They created a Google Form reporting the need to help Request for data collection help with COVID-19 response.
The real-life case regarding using ODK Collect was the Philippines one, where several patients died waiting for COVID-19 test results. All reported PUI (patient under investigation) and PUM (persons under monitoring) data were based on the agency’s algorithm, stored and encoded through “Open Data Kit.” The whole story you can read in this article.
SolDevelo has always declared that really cares about the good of other communities, so our biggest pride is when our solutions find their right place – where they are the most needed. In these tough times, where any help worths its weight in gold, we are happy to be a part of the team of fighters with the coronavirus.