Questions & answers
What is the underlying study design?
The Covid-Pool software can be used with simple pooling designs where a number of samples are combined within one pool (typically comprising 20 to 30 samples) which is then tested, and with cascaded pooling setups where a set of smaller pools (typically containing 5 samples each) are combined into one larger pool for first-round testing. See for example these papers where the issue of sensitivity in sample pooling is addressed: Schmidt et al. 2020, Lohse et al. 2020
Has this tool been used in the field already?
The Covid-Pool system has been used during a field study run in southwestern Germany, where over 20,000 persons working or living in homes for the elderly have been screened for SARS-CoV-2 infection. Labs from several institutions as well as a mobile lab truck were involved in that study named "SaarCoScreen". Newspaper article (DE), Press release (EN), Mobile lab (EN)
Which languages does the software support?
Inside the Covid-Pool software the currently available languages are English and German.
How about extended data analysis/reporting?
Covid-Pool offers basic statistical overview functions for the sample pooling process and it can also create report sheets showing the results for pools and samples from any tested source. Moreover, the underlying MySQL database design is simple and makes development of custom data analysis queries easy.
Can the sofware be adapted to my specific requirements?
The Covid-Pool application is built on standard web technologies such as PHP using a MySQL database and is provided as open-source software. This makes it easy to extend or modify the system by any software engineer having the appropriate skills. You may also contact us with your ideas about additional functions.
Can my screening project be hosted remotely on this server?
Our primary aim is to supply Covid-Pool as a free open-source software that can be run by anyone on their own webserver, demanding only basic IT skills for installation and operating on inexpensive hardware. Please note that we are not a compute center/data-services provider. However, if you experience that your facility can absolutely not offer the necessary infrastructure please do contact us.