The Department of Health launches a new website, NHS Choices (www.nhs.uk), this week.
Michael Sobanja, chief executive of the NHS Alliance, welcomed the site, saying: "This is another step towards helping patients to get the information they need. We believe patients should be empowered to make their own decisions and NHS Choices can be yet another avenue for them to find out about GP practices and hospitals in their local area.
"However, we must ensure that the information given to patients is absolutely accurate and that the website is easy to use and works effectively. Only then it could become an invaluable source of information for patients."
The NHS Alliance also believes that patient feedback is extremely important and that by allowing patients to post comments on their hospital experience, to which hospitals will have the opportunity to reply, the site can potentially create a healthy forum for discussion.