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News: June 2010
HON launches new certificate

June 21, 2010, Geneva – Health on the Net Foundation, a non-governmental, non-profit organization providing the HONcode, the oldest and the most used ethical and trustworthy code for medical and health related information available on Internet, launches a new and improved certificate for health and medical web sites.

A health or medical web site holding the HONcode certificate ensures its visitors that it follows primary ethical standards in its presentation of information, based on eight basic principles. The certificate also guarantees that the site includes information about the source and the purpose of the data it contains.

While the new certificate still retains the same features of the original one – basic information about the web site, the date of certification, initial and recent review dates – it now highlights a new characteristic that is unique to each web site. Following careful manual evaluation by the HON Evaluation Team, the new certificate displays indications used in the evaluation, pointing to sample extracts from the web site that show how it follows the HONcode.

The new certificate is an initiative to enhance further the HONcode certification system, and to encourage further health and medical information seekers to be more critical when searching through the Internet. It is also intended to advance the ethical use and promotion of health and medical data among online information providers.

The HONcode is the most widely-accepted reference for online health and medical publishers. Currently, the HONcode is used by over 7,200 certified web sites, covering 102 countries.

HON is committed to contributing towards the improvement the quality of health and medical information online, providing efforts to continuously develop and enhance methods to help information seekers to adapt to the ever-changing, ever-growing Internet society.

Following is an example of the improved certificate. Click to see the actual certificate.

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