Tuesday, January 9, 2024

Bulk Download of Fed Reg Comments: Tips from Dun Liang at Health Policy Watch

Header:  How to bulk download federal comments.


Have you ever felt frustrated when looking at a repository for federal rule comments, and there are 5,000 of them?   You can try searching for a specific key word (CPT Code 80101, or an organization like "ACLA").   

Over at the Health Policy Watch Newsletter, at Linked In, Lilly's Dun Liang points out there is a "bulk download" feature.   It results in a big excel spreadsheet with links to each cloud comment document.

  • Find Health Policy Watch Newsletter here.
  • Find the navigation article here.
  • Find Dun Liang himself, here.  
    • Dr. Liang has a biomedical PhD and works in regulatory at Lilly.  
    • He's also got a short blog on how to approve MCED.


To crib from his article, the FDA comment page (with 6,700 commens) is here:


But instead, go to the special page for bulk downloads here:


Enter the FDA docket FDA-2023-N-2177;   Enter your email.  Press SEND.   "Wait up to 24 hours" at your email account.


I didn't have to wait 24 hours; a cloud link to the table came in a minute to my email.  I recommend converting immediately from a CSV file to an XLS file.   

The first key column is Column J, FILE TITLE.   Unfortunately, comments form organizations (like AMA or CAP) are filed by the name of the submitter ("John Smith") so you can't easily find the major organizational letters.

The second key column is Column BF, the cloud links to PDFs.   (They are blank for a few items that are copyrighted).


I've put my own copy of the resulting Excel as a Zip file (1 mb 6500 lines) in the cloud where you can download it directly -