RADARplus – Routine Anonymized Data for Advanced Health Services Research

In the predecessor project RADAR, an infrastructure for the use of electronic patient record (EPR) data from general practices (GP) care was successfully established. RADARplus will consolidate, improve and expand this infrastructure. Some sub-projects will build on existing RADAR processes and improve or extend them, while others will develop sustainable new infrastructure elements for primary care research. RADARplus can thus be divided into two broad thematic work areas:


Objectives for work area 1 – Continuing, adapting and improving the existing RADAR infrastructure and workflows:

  • Maintenance/continued operation of the RADAR infrastructure (sub-project 1)
  • Recruitment of a further 20 GP practices for participation in the pseudonymous scenario, continuation of pseudonymisation and data management of EPR data from general practices (sub-project 2)
  • Qualitative investigations into possibilities to improve recruitment and involvement of practices, and development of information videos, evaluation (sub-project 2)

Objectives for work area 2 – Developing new research infrastructure and techniques:

  • Conception, development and pilot for digital, paperless informed consent and signature management in GP environments to follow-up current regulations such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) by state-of-the-art technical solutions (sub-project 3)
  • Routine GP data acquisition and processing: adaptation of the RADAR software (BDT parser) with regard to imminent changes in technologies and interfaces (HLA 7 FIHR) (sub-project 4)
  • Developing a concept for risk-based anonymization of data from GPs EPRs, assessing the data protection impact (sub-project 5)
  • Creation of a research portal, displaying data structure, summarized data and descriptive statistics to RADARplus researchers; and displaying own data as well as summarized data and selected statistics to participating/contributing GPs, who can use this to benchmark their own data against the overall database (sub-project 6)


Subprojects 1 and 2 of RADARplus, which are coordinated by the Department of General Medicine at the University Medical Center Göttingen, have no interventions. These are observational studies without interventions

Registration of studies

The following studies have been registered with the German Register for Clinical Studies (www.drks.de):

RADARplus sub-project 1: Continuation of the pilot study from the predecessor project RADAR with broad research purpose (DRKS 00023035)

RADARplus sub-project 2: Interview studies; settings for the use of outpatient electronic data from practice management systems for health care research: two interview studies with general practitioners and medical assistants (DRKS00022572)

Project Funding

The RADARplus project is funded by the German Research Foundation (reference: HU 1587/2-2).

Subproject 1 - RADAR continuation


Internationally, there are already various databases for general medical research (e.g. Netherlands, Great Britain). The aim of the project is to establish a database with GP treatment data of about 1,500 patients for research in Germany. The focus here is on the electronically documented treatment data of GP patients. This data is to be collected and researched in a data protection-compliant manner. A further goal of subproject 1 of RADARplus is the knowledge extraction and derivation of general medical knowledge directly from (as yet) unknown patient data without the need to pursue a specific research question.

Electronically documented treatment data from family practice are difficult to access in Germany due to technical obstacles (e.g. blocking of data export) and high data protection requirements for research with health data. The infrastructure and procedures established in the predecessor project RADAR will be used for the database development in the follow-up project RADARplus, subproject 1 "RADAR continuation".

In cooperation with general practitioners in private practice, patients are recruited from general medical practices who, after being informed, agree to the use of their documented treatment data for research purposes. Using the software developed in the predecessor project RADAR, the exported data is separated into identifying data (IDAT, e.g. names/addresses) and medical data (MDAT, e.g. diagnoses, prescriptions). IDAT is managed by the independent trustee of the University Medical Center Greifswald. This means that researchers do not have direct access to names and contact details of patients. The observational study of subproject 1 is registered with the German Register for Clinical Studies (DRKS) under the number DRKS00023035 https://www.drks.de/drks_web/navigate.do?navigationId=trial.HTML&TRIAL_ID=DRKS00023035. The registration was preceded by a positive review by the Ethics Committee of the University Medical Center Göttingen (application no. 23/2/18).

If you are interested, please feel free to contact us.

Your contact person for subproject 1:

Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter

Dr.-Ing. Falk Schlegelmilch

Dr.-Ing. Falk Schlegelmilch

contact information

Subproject 2 – Practice Involvement & Relations

Two series of face-to-face interviews with about 20 general practitioners resp. 20 practice staff members and assistants focussing on their opinion, resentments, experience and need for assistance when using electronic medical records for secondary health services and practice based research.

If you are interested, please feel free to contact us.

Your contact person for subproject 2:


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