Walkthrough for the daiquiri package

This vignette demonstrates how to use this package to generate an html report that allows you to quickly review any changes in a temporal dataset’s values over time.

Data format

Data must be in tabular format, as a data frame. Each row should represent a single “event” such as a visit to hospital or a medical test result or a drug prescription. One column must contain the “event date” (aka “timepoint”) for the row, with further columns containing any associated values for the event, such as the type of visit, or the name of the medical test, or the quantity of the drug prescribed.

In order for the package to detect any non-conformant values in numeric or datetime fields, these should be present in the data frame in their raw character format. A function called read_data() is supplied to assist with this, and will read rectangular data from a text file automatically as character type.

Dates are expected to be in the format YYYY-MM-DD or YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS, though a range of other date formats can also be accepted (see later). User-specified locales are not currently supported.


The example_prescriptions dataset is provided with this package as a csv file, and contains (synthetic) examples of antibiotic prescriptions given in a hospital over a period of a year, with one row per prescription. It contains 8 columns:

There are some missing values which are represented by the string ‘NULL’. String values that should be treated as missing values can be specified when the data is processed, using the na parameter.

# first, attach the package if you haven't already

# this is where the example file is located
path <- system.file("extdata", "example_prescriptions.csv", package = "daiquiri")

# load the data into a data.frame without doing any datatype conversion
example_prescriptions <- read_data(
  delim = ",",
  col_names = TRUE,
  show_progress = FALSE

#> # A tibble: 6 × 8
#>   PrescriptionID PrescriptionDate    Admis…¹ Drug  Dose  DoseU…² Patie…³ Locat…⁴
#>   <chr>          <chr>               <chr>   <chr> <chr> <chr>   <chr>   <chr>  
#> 1 6000           2021-01-01 00:00:00 2020-1… Ceft… 500   mg      4993679 SITE1  
#> 2 6001           NULL                2020-1… Fluc… 1000  mg      819452  SITE1  
#> 3 6002           NULL                2020-1… Teic… 400   mg      275597  SITE1  
#> 4 6003           2021-01-01 01:00:00 2020-1… Fluc… 1000  NULL    819452  SITE1  
#> 5 6004           2021-01-01 02:00:00 2020-1… Fluc… 1000  NULL    528071  SITE1  
#> 6 6005           2021-01-01 03:00:00 2020-1… Co-a… 1.2   g       1001434 SITE1  
#> # … with abbreviated variable names ¹​AdmissionDate, ²​DoseUnit, ³​PatientID,
#> #   ⁴​Location

Specification of data field types

You must specify what type of data is expected in each column, e.g. a date, a number, a nominal category. The package will use this information to calculate the number of values that are not of the expected type, and to decide which summary functions to use for the time series’.

One and only one column must be chosen to be the “timepoint” field (though you could run the package again using a different column as the timepoint field if you so choose). This column will be used as the independent time variable on the x-axis of each time series plot.

Here is a list of the possible field types for the columns. Different time series will be generated depending on the type of field. All types will have time series generated for the number of values present, as well as the number and percentage of missing values.

Lastly, a number of time series will be generated for the dataset as a whole, namely:


The ft_timepoint() and ft_datetime() field types accept a format parameter for when the values in the column are not in YYYY-MM-DD or YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS format. These must follow the col_datetime format specifications from the readr package, e.g. “%d/%m/%Y”. When a format is supplied, it must match the complete string. User-specified locales are not currently supported.

If your data is already aggregated (e.g. one column contains a date and the other columns contain the number of inpatient admissions, outpatient appointments, and emergency department attendances on that date), you can still use this package if you restrict to the ft_timepoint(), ft_numeric(), and ft_simple() field types.


For the example_prescriptions dataset above, we will use the PrescriptionDate as the timepoint field, and specify the other columns as follows:

# set up a field_types specification for use later
fts <- field_types(
  PrescriptionID = ft_uniqueidentifier(),
  PrescriptionDate = ft_timepoint(),
  AdmissionDate = ft_datetime(includes_time = FALSE),
  Drug = ft_freetext(),
  Dose = ft_numeric(),
  DoseUnit = ft_categorical(),
  PatientID = ft_ignore(),
  Location = ft_categorical(aggregate_by_each_category = TRUE)

This is just one of many different possible choices, for example another option could be to use the AdmissionDate as the timepoint field instead, and set the Drug column to be categorical. It is up to you to decide which set of time series you want to be created for each column.

TIP: If you have a lot of columns in your dataset you can use the template_field_types() function to print a template specification to the console that you can copy and edit.

Generating a data quality report

The simplest way to create a data quality report is to use the daiquiri_report() function. If successful, the function will return a list containing information relating to the supplied parameters as well as the resulting daiquiri_source_data and daiquiri_aggregated_data objects, which can be reused to create further reports without needing to run everything all over again.

At this point we need to decide what level of aggregation granularity we want to use. Options are daily/weekly/monthly/quarterly/yearly. Smaller aggregation granularities (e.g. day or week) will provide more detail, but if your data is sparser you might want to use a larger granularity. Time series will be created according to the specified field types, by aggregating the values for all records whose timepoint value lies within the relevant day/week/month etc.

We also need to decide where to save the report, and optionally specify a filename (excluding file extension). The filename can only contain alphanumeric, - and _ characters. If a filename is not supplied, one will be automatically generated. We can also optionally specify a short description for the dataset, which will appear on the report.

If you specify a log directory, details of all the processing steps will be saved into a text file.

You can choose to override the existing column names in the dataframe with those in the field_types() specification by setting the override_column_names parameter to TRUE, in which case they must be specified in the correct order. If override_column_names = FALSE (the default) then the names in the field_types() specification must match exactly to those in the dataframe.


For the example_prescriptions dataset above, we will set the aggregation granularity to day, and save a report in the current directory.

daiq_obj <- daiquiri_report(
  df = example_prescriptions,
  field_types = fts,
  override_column_names = FALSE,
  na = c("", "NULL"),
  dataset_description = "Example prescription data",
  aggregation_timeunit = "day",
  report_title = "daiquiri data quality report",
  save_directory = ".",
  save_filename = "example_prescriptions_report",
  show_progress = TRUE,
  log_directory = NULL

Contents of the report

The html reports created by this package can be opened in a browser and/or attached to an email, and contain three main tabs:

Source data

This contains child tabs which provide an overall summary of the data imported, plus a complete list of validation warnings (such as any values identified as non-conformant)

Aggregated data

This contains child tabs which display plots showing overall numbers of records, missing values, non-conformant values, and duplicate records per timepoint, across the dataset as a whole. Fields and timepoints where these values are not applicable are coloured in grey.

Individual data fields

This contains two levels of child tabs. The first level consists of one tab per data field in the dataset. Within each data field tab, there is a further set of child tabs displaying a plot for each time series created

Advanced usage details

The simplest way to use this package is to use the daiquiri_report() function as described above, which loads the data, aggregates it, and generates a report all in one go. However, if you have a very large dataset or if you want to create reports for multiple aggregation granularities without re-loading the data each time, you may prefer to do this in stages. Here is an example of how to use the intermediate functions and objects to achieve this. NOTE: if you want to change the field_types() specification then the data will need to be re-loaded.

# load your dataset into a source_data object
prescriptions_source_data <- prepare_data(
  fieldtypes = fts,
  na = c("", "NULL")

# aggregate the source_data object by desired granularity
prescriptions_byday <- aggregate_data(
  aggregation_timeunit = "day"

# aggregate the same source_data object by a different granularity
prescriptions_byweek <- aggregate_data(
  aggregation_timeunit = "week"

# generate and save the reports
  source_data = prescriptions_source_data,
  aggregated_data = prescriptions_byday,
  report_title = "Daily prescriptions",
  save_directory = ".",
  save_filename = "example_prescriptions_byday"

  source_data = prescriptions_source_data,
  aggregated_data = prescriptions_byweek,
  report_title = "Weekly prescriptions",
  save_directory = ".",
  save_filename = "example_prescriptions_byweek"