Content guide

HSE website content must be useful and easy for people to find, understand and act on.

By following our principles and guidelines, we can make effective content.

Advising on health

The HSE website provides advice to everyone in Ireland on conditions that affect their health.

We understand that people often come to us when they are sick, worried, distressed or frightened.

Research shows that stress affects comprehension: people find it hard to understand information when they are in distress. That’s because stress adds to our cognitive load.

So, we must work even harder to ensure that our content is clear, simple, accurate, trustworthy and works for all people in all circumstances.

That’s why everyone who writes for should follow these guidelines.

Content principles

  1. We meet user needs
  2. We use data and evidence
  3. We write so it's easy to understand us
  4. We do the hard work to open up our content to our users
  5. We own the content, experts own the facts
  6. We work with other teams to ensure content reaches our users
  7. We ensure content is safe and trustworthy
  8. We don't produce more content than can be professionally maintained


We’re currently reviewing our content guidelines to update and improve them.

If you need some guidance, email

Who works on HSE web content

Content for the general public is maintained centrally by the content design team in partnership with subject matter experts from across the HSE.

Staff content is designed and maintained by Internal Communications in partnership with colleagues from various HSE divisions.

All other content is created, published and maintained either by:

  • publishers outside of the Digital Team
  • the team who respond to requests for support sent to - this is for small and straightforward content requests anything larger needs to be set up as a project

Contact us

If you can’t find what you’re looking for here, or have a question about content design, email us on