Data Management and Data Quality in PERCH, a Large International Case-Control Study of Severe Childhood Pneumonia
The Pneumonia Etiology Research for Child Health (PERCH) study is the largest multicountry etiology study of pediatric pneumonia undertaken in the past 3 decades. The study enrolled 4232 hospitalized cases and 5325 controls over 2 years across 9 research sites in 7 countries in Africa and Asia. The volume and complexity of data collection in PERCH presented considerable logistical and technical challenges. The project chose an internet-based data entry system to allow real-time access to the data, enabling the project to monitor and clean incoming data and perform preliminary analyses throughout the study. To ensure high-quality data, the project developed comprehensive quality indicator, data query, and monitoring reports. Among the approximately 9000 cases and controls, analyzable laboratory results were available for ≥96% of core specimens collected. Selected approaches to data management in PERCH may be extended to the planning and organization of international studies of similar scope and complexity.