Evaluating Healthcare Website Trustworthiness & Quality


Use the guidelines below to evaluate which health-related websites you can trust. The most trustworthy sites will have most if not all of the following:

  • The name of the person, company, or organization responsible for the site and its content. This should be easy to find on the home page and most pages of the site.
  • If you are reading a particular article, what are the author’s credentials? Is the author affiliated with any major medical institutions?
  • The original source and “last revised” date of the information should be clearly labeled.
  • Who reviews the material? Is there a medical advisory board that reads the medical content before it is made available to the public?
  • Is the purpose and goal of the sponsoring organization clearly stated?
  • Are the sources of a Web site’s income should be obvious and clear. Does the site sell advertising, or subscriptions? Is it sponsored by another company?
  • The purpose of the site should be easy to find. Most web sites have a link called “About Us”, or something like that you can click on to learn the purpose of the sit
  • Medical facts should have references to articles in medical journals, additional contact information, or links to the research the facts are based on.
  • Opinions, chat rooms, advice, and personal observations should be clearly identified and separated from science and research.
  • Are there easy ways to contact the sponsor for more information or to verify information presented?
  • If you have to register, is it clear how your personal information will be used?
  • Does the site have a clear privacy policy?


Consumer Reports Study Identifies Teaching Hospitals That Threaten Patient Safety


A new study examining the performance of teaching hospitals on preventing central line infections identifies 31 hospitals on its “lowest performing” list. The full article is due out in the January issue of Consumer Reports. You can click here for more information, and a list of the hospitals that may be putting patients at risk.