Finding Credible Health Information Online

It's likely you are one of the millions of Americans who look for health information online each year, but finding accurate, reliable medical information online can be a daunting task even for the most tech-savvy person. Here are some tips for finding credible health information online.

Qualities of A Credible Website

It has a respected publisher.

Who manages the site? Knowing the owner/publisher of the site will give you further insight on the credibility of information published there. A good site will make ownership and authorship clear. Clicking 'About Us' is a good place to start.

The web address itself can provide information about the sponsor.

  • A government agency has .gov in the address.
  • An educational institution has .edu in the address.
  • A professional or non-profit organization will likely be identified as .org. Note that .org does not necessarily indicate current, scientifically valid, or unbiased information.
  • Most .com addresses are for-profit companies.

Information on the site is current and up to date.

The site should be updated frequently and reflect the most current information. Look for the copyright date (usually at the very bottom of the page) and/or a clearly posted latest revision date. Check links within the site, as broken links may indicate an out-of-date site.

The content on the site is non-biased.

Information should be presented in a clear, factual manner. It should be non-biased and capable of being verified from a primary information source, such as scientific studies, peer-reviewed professional literature, links to other web pages, or other neutral references. Be skeptical of websites that contain endorsements/advertisements, or that seem to 'push' certain products.