How Do I Conduct a Tab-delimited Upload in PARS?
Now that we’ve reviewed each of the steps involved in preparing your activity data for tab-delimited batch upload into PARS, let’s explore the final key steps of the process to make sure that your upload works successfully.
We’ve talked about the data set requirements for PARS. So before you create your tab-delimited file, check your spreadsheet once again to make sure that each column of the spreadsheet is matched in order and format to the PARS specifications described in Appendix A and shown in the Excel template file example.
Next, make sure that each row represents a single activity. Take note that for tab-delimited batch uploads, the “Provider Activity ID” is a required field that you must assign to each and every activity. This ID should be your way of giving a unique identifier to each activity. Consequently, if you batch upload CME activity data to PARS that includes activities you previously entered or batch uploaded into PARS, the system will update the previously entered records that have matching Provider Activity IDs. See Appendix B in the Activity Tab-delimited File Upload Instructions for more information about “Activity Updates and Additions.”
Another item – PARS accepts information about the source of commercial support for your CME activities. This information is optional. If any of your CME activities receive monies or in-kind support from more than three commercial supporters – and you wish to share the optional information with the ACCME, you may need to add columns to your spreadsheet ‑ beyond the number of fields we discussed earlier. The Upload Instructions will provide you with more information about how to do this.
Lastly—this is important--before you create your tab-delimited file, make sure that you delete the “header row” – that is, this first row of the spreadsheet that contains the field/column names.
Now, we’re ready to create our tab-delimited file. First, we click on “Save As,” then select “Text (Tab-delimited)” from the drop-down menu. Pay attention to the location that your file is saved to.
Now, let’s log in to PARS and navigate to the Activities tab.
To begin your batch upload, click on the “Batch Upload Activities” button in the middle of the page on the Activity tab, here, or click on the “Batch Upload Activites” link in the left-hand column, here. When you click on either the button or the link, you will be prompted to specify the Reporting Year for which you are uploading activities. Once you select the appropriate year range and click on “Continue”, you will be directed to this page , which contains more information about the two types of batch uploading available. Now that you’re on the Batch Upload page, select tab-delimited as your file format. Next, you will browse to the activity tab-delimited file that you just saved. Finally, let’s click on the “Upload & Validate” button at the bottom of this tab to have PARS check our file. Bingo, it worked.
It is not uncommon for errors to occur when you go to upload your tab-delimited files. The “Upload & Validate” button provides you the opportunity to have PARS check your data and give you feedback to ensure the upload is successful. The ACCME has created a website page that describes common errors you might receive, and how to resolve them.
You've now received an introduction to some of the key features of preparing and uploading your batch data to PARS using tab-delimited files. We hope that this tutorial is helpful to you, and remind you to look at the help resources provided within PARS and on the ACCME Web site for further study. Of course, don't hesitate to contact the ACCME via the "Contact Support" button within PARS - found here - if you have any further questions. Thank you.