The Patient Information Forum (PIF) has today (28 February) launched a new PIF TICK toolkit to help healthcare professionals provide trusted information to their patients.
A 2022 survey found 58% of healthcare professionals reported difficulty sourcing reliable health information to share with patients.
The new PIF TICK toolkit helps tackle that challenge. It includes a directory of more than 85 Trusted Information Creators, sorted by therapy area.
Every organisation signposted in the directory has undergone a robust, independent-assessment of their healthcare information production process.
Empowering self care
Sue Farrington, chair of PIF, said: “We know from the recent COVID-19 crisis and the proliferation of opinion on social media platforms, often taken for fact, how disinformation can spread.
"So, at a time when our healthcare system is stretched, it becomes even more important that healthcare professionals can have confidence in being able to signpost trusted information.”
Dr Juhi Tandon, GP and co-founder of Cognitant Group, said: “As doctors, we want to encourage our patients to play a more participatory role in their health and empower them with the tools needed to better self-manage their care.
"This starts with trusted health information.
"In our short consultation time, we struggle to adequately explain health, disease and treatment, so the ability to use the PIF TICK to signpost patients to reliable, accurate and up-to-date, evidence-based health information from trusted sources, is incredibly valuable.
"It can really augment shared decision making and informed choice.”
Last year the World Health Organisation (WHO) identified credibility marks as part of the solution to misinformation.
Its report featured the PIF TICK as a case study and noted the important role of healthcare professionals in signposting trusted sources of information.
The TRIP database, Healthinote and HCI video use the PIF TICK to verify trusted health information.
NHSE used the PIF TICK criteria as the basis of its new content standard.
Dr Michael Hughes, consultant rheumatologist, said: “All patients need access to reliable, high-quality, and readable information from their initial diagnosis and throughout the course of their disease.
"The PIF TICK is a trusted reassurance that clinicians are signposting patients to high-quality and assured information.”
Factsheets for patients
As well as the directory of certified organisations, the new toolkit features patient resources, including easy-to-use factsheets on spotting false health information, BMI and clinical evidence.
Dr Knut Schroeder, GP, said: “Our patients need easy access to trusted health information to make good decisions about their health and wellbeing.
"The PIF TICK makes it really easy for you to spot certified producers of reliable health information and signpost your patients to trusted resources.
"Use the PIF TICK to help people avoid misinformation and feel confident the information you signpost to is quality-assured, evidence-informed and user friendly – designed with patients' needs in mind.”
Download the PIF TICK toolkit
Find out more and download the toolkit at piftick.org.uk/healthcare-professionals-information