Frequently Asked Questions

What is the GPBuddy Community Tracker?


The GPBuddy Community Tracker is a daily survey for GPs in Ireland regarding Covid19 referrals. The tracker was set up to harness the power of General Practice Data to provide timely actionable data on Covid19 referrals from GPs. It takes 60 seconds to complete and the tracker report is available on completion of the survey. The data is provided to the Department of Health to help in Covid19 considerations and public health measures.




Who is it for?


We are asking GPs in Ireland to complete the survey every day they work in general practice, even if no cases of Covid19 were collected. A ‘zero referred’ is as important to us as a positive case as it avoids response bias.




What information is collected?


We ask a few simple questions – What county you work in, the number of clinically diagnosed cases diagnosed in practice today, the number of cases diagnosed that met the referral criteria, number of positive results received in practice today. We also ask for the GP’s name and medical council number to prevent duplication of data.




Who is this information shared with?


The information collected is collated into our GPBuddy Community Tracker report, released each workday through GP Buddy and the ICGP and shared with the Department of Health. The aggregate data is also provided to the Department of Health and the Central Statistics Office to aid in Covid19 considerations and Public Health Measures.




What is the information being used for?


The information helps to assess the average number of cases diagnosed per GP in a certain County/Dublin postal area, as well as the average number of cases referred for testing. This gives a sense of disease activity in the community. It will also reflect the effect of changes in case definition, referral criteria and in lifting of restrictions in the community – it can act as an ‘early warning system’ of sorts to detect potentially emerging hotspots




Why do I have to fill it in every day?


We ask that you fill in the tracker each day you work in General Practice, but not to complete it if you have not worked in General Practice that day. By developing a habit of completing the tracker, there is less likely to be response bias (ie only completing the survey if you have a positive case diagnosis/referral).




When does the tracker open each day?


Currently the tracker opens at 2pm each day and remains open until 10am the following morning.




I didn’t work in general practice today, should I still fill in the tracker today?


No, please don’t fill in the tracker if you didn’t work in general practice today.




I worked in general practice today, but I didn’t diagnose any potential Covid19 cases, do I still fill in the tracker for today?


Yes, we want to get a sense of the level of the disease in the community – if there are no cases, that is as important to capture as positive cases.




I only worked one session in practice today – should I still complete the tracker?


Yes absolutely, if you worked 1 or 2 sessions in practice, we would like you to fill in the tracker.




I look after nursing home patients, should I count them as referrals if I have diagnosed them with Covid19?


Yes – we want you to complete clinical diagnoses of all patients of your practice. We do not want you to put in asymptomatic referrals (e.g. nursing home patient/staff screening if you have an occupational health role in a care/nursing home) that do not meet the case definition.




There are three doctors in my practice, can I complete the tracker for the whole practice together?


No. We would prefer that you complete the survey just for yourself rather than for all GPs in the practice. This reduces the risk of duplication of survey answers.




How do I access the survey?


The survey link is currently sent out to all GP Buddy members at 6pm each day. It can also be accessed at www.gpcommunitytracker.com The survey is open from 2pm each evening until 10am the following day.





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