Regulating healthcare communications online

The Chinese seem to have put out some stringent regulations around healthcare site content and advertising according to the Wall Street Journal. There were a couple of elements in their regulations that found of interest:

“First, all health-related Web sites will have to be licensed by provincial-level health authorities. Only established health institutions and social organizations will be eligible, and they must have at least two staff members who have specialized knowledge of China’s health laws and regulations.”

This is something that they will be reviewing every two years.

“Web sites that provide online health information services bear full responsibility for all information published, including information that is linked to.”

Making the sites responsible for the content of third party sites that they link to is particularly difficult as the publisher wouldn’t have control of those sites, but would still have responsibility.

Whilst the regulations are onerous, it is good that the Chinese government is providing explicit regulations in online healthcare communications defining a clear sandpit for agencies and healthcare professionals to work within.

Archived from blog posts I wrote for PR Week