"afgis" quality logo

The abbreviation "afgis" stands for "Aktionsforum Gesundheitsinformationssystem e.V." ["Action Forum on Health Information Systems"], a network of associations, companies and individuals. Established in 2003, the action forum aims to promote the quality of information on health issues. afgis develops and promotes user-oriented standards in all areas related to providing health information on the Internet.  The association awards a quality logo to help users to identify websites that provide high-quality health information online.

What does the afgis Logo indicate?

It identifies websites that offer high-quality health information on the Internet. To receive the quality logo, the providers must present additional information about their company and their information. This creates transparency for users seeking information and makes it easier to assess the credibility of the information.

To ensure this transparency, afgis has defined ten key criteria of transparency:

  1. the provider
  2. goal, purpose, and intended target group(s) of the information 
  3. authors and data sources of the information
  4. up-to-dateness of the data
  5. options for users to provide feedback
  6. quality assurance procedures 
  7. separation of advertising and editorial content 
  8. financing and sponsoring 
  9. cooperations and networks
  10. use and protection of data 

"HONcode" Certificate

The medical information provided on the Techniker Krankenkasse website complies with the strictest requirements for neutrality and transparency. This compliance was last affirmed by the Health On the Net Foundation (HON) in September 2020.

What is the Health On the Net Foundation?

The Health On the Net Foundation is a foundation based in Switzerland. It was established in 1995 to promote the effective and reliable use of new technologies in telemedicine worldwide.

The objective of the Health On the Net Foundation is to review and ensure the quality and reliability of health information on the Internet. To this end, it has published eight requirements that providers of medical and health information must comply with.

  • The information provided on the site must be designed to support, but not replace, the existing doctor-patient relationship.
  • Medical and health advice offered on the site is only provided by authors who are medically trained or qualified health professionals.  If this is not the case for a piece of advice or information provided, that fact must be clearly and expressly stated on the website.
  • Balanced scientific evidence should support and back up all claims regarding the benefit and efficacy of a specific therapy, treatment, product or service.  This means that scientific evidence must be reviewed before it is published in order to verify its credibility.
  • Furthermore, the HONcode requires that the website must respect the privacy and confidentiality of data submitted to the site. This particularly applies to the identity of patients and other visitors to medical websites.
  • The Health On the Net Foundation regularly monitors the website’s compliance with the requirements of the HONcode.

"MediSuch" Certificate

Medisuch is run by the "Institut für Qualität und Transparenz von Gesundheitsinformationen" ["Institute for Quality and Transparency of Health Information"] (IQTG). The institute researches, sorts and evaluates health information on an ongoing basis. The IQTG has certified the health information provided on www.tk.de because, among other aspects, it

  • presents interesting health information in a patient-relevant and understandable way,
  • the editorial content and advertising are clearly separated, and
  • www.tk.de is not under the direct or indirect influence of companies that manufacture pharmaceuticals, medical devices or dietary supplements.