Online Tool for the Assessment of the Burden of COVID-19 in Patients: Development Study

Esther M J van Noort*, Danny Claessens, Catharina C Moor, Carlijn A L Van Den Berg, Marise J Kasteleyn, Johannes C C M In 't Veen, Onno C P Van Schayck, Niels H Chavannes

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


BACKGROUND: The impact of COVID-19 has been felt worldwide, yet we are still unsure about its full impact. One of the gaps in our current knowledge relates to the long-term mental and physical impact of the infection on affected individuals. The COVID-19 pandemic hit the Netherlands at the end of February 2020, resulting in over 900,000 people testing positive for the virus, over 24,000 hospitalizations, and over 13,000 deaths by the end of January 2021. Although many patients recover from the acute phase of the disease, experience with other virus outbreaks has raised concerns regarding possible late sequelae of the infection.

OBJECTIVE: This study aims to develop an online tool to assess the long-term burden of COVID-19 in patients.

METHODS: In this paper, we describe the process of development, assessment, programming, implementation, and use of this new tool: the assessment of burden of COVID-19 (ABCoV) tool. This new tool is based on the well-validated assessment of burden of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease tool.

RESULTS: As of January 2021, the new ABCoV tool has been used in an online patient platform by more than 2100 self-registered patients and another 400 patients in a hospital setting, resulting in over 2500 patients. These patients have submitted the ABCoV questionnaire 3926 times. Among the self-registered patients who agreed to have their data analyzed (n=1898), the number of females was high (n=1153, 60.7%), many were medically diagnosed with COVID-19 (n=892, 47.0%), and many were relatively young with only 7.4% (n=141) being older than 60 years. Of all patients that actually used the tool (n=1517), almost one-quarter (n=356, 23.5%) used the tool twice, and only a small group (n=76, 5.0%) used the tool 6 times.

CONCLUSIONS: This new ABCoV tool has been broadly and repeatedly used, and may provide insight into the perceived burden of disease, provide direction for personalized aftercare for people post COVID-19, and help us to be prepared for possible future recurrences.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere22603
Number of pages9
JournalJMIR Formative Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 31 Mar 2021


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