The Information Standard Principles
The Information Standard for Health and Care Information Production Quality Statements
The Information Standard is made up of 6 principles – each supported by quality statements informed by best practice. These are designed to show that your organisation has a process in place to produce and sustain good quality, evidence based, health and care information. This should be information that users can understand and act upon consistently.
- Information production
- Evidence sources
- User understanding and involvement
- End product
This principle is designed to demonstrate that your organisation has a defined process in place to produce good quality health and care information in a consistent manner.
a) There is a defined process for producing information (including identifying the need for a product, checking stages, final sign-off, review, version control and archiving)
b) All individuals involved in the information process have the relevant up to date training/experience and follow the defined process for all information products
This principle is designed to ensure that where evidence is used, is it relevant and from a recognised source
c) Information is created using high quality evidence (where the evidence exists) and is presented in a balanced manner. Where there is no evidence to back up claims made in an information product this is made clear to the end user. Evidence is reviewed for currency each time the resource is updated.
d) Information is reviewed by relevant professionals/peers before it is approved for use
User understanding and involvement
This principle is designed to ensure through user involvement that you understand who the information is designed for, why it is required and what users’ needs are. And to ensure, through user testing, that it reflects those needs and the views of those using it. User involvement, including testing, should be representative of the target audience and involve an appropriate number of such people.
e) Information is created taking into consideration the health literacy and/or accessibility needs of the population it is aimed at
f) Jargon is not used and medical terms (when used) are explained
g) End users are involved at the outset and throughout in the production and their input is actively used.
This principle is designed to ensure that the product has been developed following your process and is of high quality.
h) An authorised approver(s) checks that your process has been followed sufficiently before a product is approved for publication
i) The date and review date of each information product are clearly stated
j) Information is in plain language, free from spelling and grammatical errors – and medical terms are explained where necessary
k) References to the evidence used in the information are retained and made available if requested
l) The information signposts the end user to further sources of information
m) The information product gives the end user details on how they can give their feedback
This principle is designed to ensure that all feedback (outside the development process) is dealt with appropriately especially concerning errors, omissions or points for clarification. Such feedback is recorded, actioned and resolved as appropriate, especially if an amendment to, or withdrawal of, an information product is required.
n) People are encouraged to give any ongoing feedback after the product has been published and this is acted upon as appropriate
This principle is designed to ensure that your information products are reviewed on a planned and regular basis, within a timeframe appropriate to the type of information, not normally more than every three years. Any products that are not reviewed within your defined review periods should no longer be distributed.
o) There is defined process for reviewing published/approved information
p) All staff involved in the information process follow the defined review process for all information products.