September 2020

PriCov-19 Study: a cross-sectional study in 38 countries on the organization of care in general practices during the COVID-19 pandemic

Duration: Sep 2020 - Dec 2023

Primary care plays a key role during the COVID-19 pandemic, as it is often the first point of contact for potentially infected patients. Due to the pandemic, GP practices are facing unprecedented structural and organizational challenges in patient safety and the delivery of quality care, especially for vulnerable patients. These challenges relate not only to safe care for vulnerable patients with possible COVID symptoms, but also to avoiding collateral damage from the pandemic in patients who need frequent follow-up for medical or social reasons, patients who are afraid to undergo the necessary seeking medical help due to disinformation, or patients who already experience difficulties accessing care under normal circumstances.

- assess the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the organization of care in (primary) general practices and on the different dimensions of quality of care
- provide insight into the efforts of primary care, in particular general practices, to ensure access and quality care for all patients during the COVID-19 pandemic
- provide insight into how the COVID-19 pandemic has led to changes in the taskes and roles of practitioners
- exploring the measures that GP practices take to ensure the well-being of their staff

A cross-sectional study in multiple countries is being conducted using an online primary care/general practice questionnaire. Data are collected following a cross-sectional study design and using an online questionnaire sent to general practices in 37 European countries and Israel. More than 4.700 practices participated in this study:

Participating countries
38 different countries are enrolled in this study: Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kosovo*, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldavia, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, The United Kingdom, Turkey and Ukraine.

- two national publications; one on key outcomes and one on caring for vulnerable patients
- an international article on frontline job changes during the pandemic (lead authorship)
- participation in the writing of other international articles

International project website:
in-kind contributions by the partnering institutions, with additional support of the European General Practice Research Workshop (EGPRN) (COVID-19 Grant Funding)
Project partners
University of Ghent, Belgium (leading partner); European Association for Quality and Patient Safety in Primary Care (EQuiP), Slovenia; one of the WONCA networks