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Medical and Health Research: Evaluating

Evaluating Health Websites

Consider the following when searching online:

  • Who is providing the content?
  • Why are they providing this information? 
  • Where does the information come from?
  • Is it up-to-date?
  • How is the site funded?
  • Is there advertising on the site, and, if so, is it clearly labeled?

Important note:

The language in scientific articles has a neutral tone. Credible medical information will never have inflammatory or sensationalized language. If a claim touts a "miracle cure" or "is guaranteed to work," look elsewhere.

Additional Sources for Evaluation

PubMed Bookshelf

Both of these ebooks suggest related articles in PubMed.

Evaluating Sources

A Quality Source:

  • is run by experts
  • has a clearly stated purpose
  • labels advertising
  • reviews information before posting it
  • explains the sources of data and research
  • is up-to-date
  • will not share personal information

Health on the Internet (HONcode)