You are here:

NHS Choices: how we work

The Information Standard

NHS Choices and the Digital Assessment Service – which provides our Health and Symptom Checker tools – have been certified as producers of reliable health and social care information by The Information Standard.

The Information Standard is a certification scheme for health and social care information. It has been established by the Department of Health to help patients and the public make informed choices about their lifestyle, their condition and their options for treatment and care.

About 50,000 organisations produce health and social care information for the public in England and some people can feel overwhelmed by the volume of material and be unsure what to trust.

The Information Standard has been introduced to fulfil the need for a “quality filter” to help people decide which information is trustworthy. It provides a recognised “quality mark” which indicates that an organisation is a reliable source of health and social care information.

To gain certification, NHS Choices and the Digital Assessment Service have had to demonstrate that the systems and methods they use to produce their material are robust and result in material that is accurate, accessible, impartial, balanced, based on evidence and well-written.

The NHS Choices information production methods are described in the site's editorial policy. You can also read the Digital Assessment Service’s Information Standard policy statement (PDF, 50kb).

User-generated information – including comments on a page, comments on services, and blogs and forums – is excluded from the scope of certification.

Read more about the scheme on The Information Standard website.

NHS Choices worked with the Royal Society for Public Health Certification to achieve certification.


Page last reviewed: 08/12/2015

Next review due: 08/12/2017