Introducing OpenFDA from the Food and Drug Administration

Welcome to the new home of openFDA! We are incredibly excited to see so much interest in our work and hope that this site can be a valuable resource to those wishing to use public FDA data in both the public and private sector to spur innovation, further regulatory or scientific missions, educate the public, and save lives.

Through openFDA, developers and researchers will have easy access to high-value FDA public data through RESTful APIs and structured file downloads. In short, our goal is to make it simple for an application, mobile, or web developer, or all stripes of researchers, to use data from FDA in their work. We’ve done an extensive amount of research both internally and with potential external developers to identify which datasets are both in demand and have a high barrier of entry. As a result, our initial pilot project will cover a number of datasets from various areas within FDA, defined into three broad focus areas: Adverse Events, Product Recalls, and Product Labeling. These API’s won’t have one-on-one matching to FDA’s internal data organizational structure; rather, we intend to abstract on top of a myriad of datasets and provide appropriate metadata and identifiers when possible. Of course, we’ll always make the raw source data available for people who prefer to work that way (and it’s good to mention that we also will not be releasing any data that could potentially be used to identify individuals or other private information).

The openFDA initiative is one part of the larger Office of Informatics and Technology Innovation roadmap. As part of my role as FDA’s Chief Health Informatics Officer, I’m working to lead efforts to move FDA in to a cutting edge technology organization. You’ll be hearing more about our other initiatives, including Cloud Computing, High Performance Computing, Next Generation Sequencing, and mobile-first deployment in the near future.

As we work towards a release of openFDA we’ll begin to share more about our work and how you can get involved. In the meantime, I suggest you sign up for our listserv (on our home page) to get the latest updates on the project. You can also reach our team at if there is a unique partnership opportunity or other collaboration you wish to discuss.


Dr. Taha Kass-Hout is the Chief Health Informatics Officer of FDA | @DrTaha_FDA

2 Responses to “Introducing OpenFDA from the Food and Drug Administration”

  1. Danny Lynn OHern

    I was looking for public information posters for community health awareness appropriate for handouts for the Halloween season. I do appreciate the CDC’s Zombie Apocalypse series for teaching classes in schools, and their posters based on favorite TV series that carry the health safety message. Most of their Public Health Posters for download and print were focused on storm preparedness. I asked the CDC Info office to push the Zombie learning tools to all states school health departments in time for this Halloween, since there are actual health lessons that are incorporated. I am looking for information for the parents, also, but in a simplified version, focusing on practical advice for the average busy working parent. I was wondering if the larger news agencies would team with the Surgeon General, CDC, NIH, or State Public Health Departments to film the public reaction to receiving candy from PPE-suited individuals in a staged bio-containment display, say, in a neighborhood with a very busy flow of Halloween trick-or-treaters, and use the public reaction to gather metrics on public perception and likely reaction, as well as hand out information that the public would easily understand. I am looking into doing this myself, but won’t be able to gather the public reactions for further improvement on delivering the messages that will improve the medical readiness of the American citizens who must be part of any large-scale health and safety response.

  2. Zubair Khan

    Thanks for informative post. openFDA is doing a great task. Thanks for share.

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