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Applicability to All HHS/OS Web Content

HHS Web standards are developed by the Digital Communications Division.  Standards and/or amendments may be submitted through digital@hhs.gov.

Approved Web standards apply to all HHS/OS managed or funded Web sites —including all Staff Division and Secretarial Priority websites, whether aimed at internal or external audiences, and attached files, including Internet, intranet, extranet (password protected) sites, and sites operating under a domain waiver, whether created in-house or by a contractor, and whether hosted by HHS or by another party.   These standards may be followed or adopted by OPDIVs.

HHS standards also apply to:

  • Cross-agency Web sites created and/or managed by HHS/OS.
  • Cooperative agreement Web sites.
  • Partnership Web sites.

Standards are forward-looking. This means that they are to be applied as new pages/sites are developed and as old pages/sites are redesigned or updated.  It is not normally necessary to revise existing content solely for the purpose of applying new standards or amendments to standards.

Offices or programs with Web sites in development at the time a standard or amendment is approved should make a best-faith effort, within the confines of any affected contract, to apply the new or revised standard.

Should it be necessary to apply a standard or amendment retroactively, that exception will be made clear, will be widely publicized, and a timeframe for compliance will be provided.All sites under development, no matter what stage of development they may be in, must meet standards or amendments that are to be applied retroactively.