Terms & conditions / data protection policy
General Terms and Conditions
This General Terms and Conditions (hereinafter the "GTC") govern the legal relationship (hereinafter the "Agreement") between you (hereinafter the "User") and AO Foundation, Clavadelerstrasse 8, 7270 Davos, Switzerland (hereinafter "AO", together the "Parties") concerning the websites "www.aofoundation.org", "www.aotrauma.org", "www.aospine.org", "www.aocmf.org", and "www.aovet.org" (hereinafter the "Sites").
By using the Sites or upon clicking of the acceptance icon indicated on the Sites the User confirms to have read these GTC and agrees to be bound by these GTC.
These GTC are available on the Sites. The User has the possibility to download a PDF-file of these GTC which can be printed out and saved at any time.
2. No advice
The Sites are not designed for laypersons. The products, procedures, therapies etc described on the Sites are only to be applied in environments specially designed and by medical professionals specially certified and trained for such procedures.
The information provided on the Sites is for educational and research purposes only and does not give professional advice or recommend particular products, procedures or therapies etc. The information contained in the Sites is not intended to present the only or necessarily the best products, procedures, or therapies etc.
No suggested test or procedure should be carried out unless, in the User's professional judgment, its risk is justified. Whoever applies products, procedures and therapies etc. shown or described on the Sites will do so at her/his own risk and is responsible for their compliance with all local laws, regulations, and medical practice applicable. Because of rapid advances in the medical sciences, AO recommends that independent verification of diagnosis, therapies, drugs, dosages, and operation methods should be made before any action is taken.
All information contained in the Sites is only intended for preparing medical procedures and not for an aid whilst carrying out medical procedures.
Individuals with any type of medical condition are specifically cautioned to seek professional medical advice before beginning any sort of health treatment. For medical concerns, including decisions about medications and other treatments, users of the Sites should always consult their physician or other qualified healthcare professional.
3. No warranty
THE SITES AND THE SERVICES CONNECTED THEREWITH ARE PROVIDED ON AN "AS IS", "WITH ALL FAULTS", AND "AS AVAILABLE" BASIS AND THE ENTIRE RISK AS TO SATISFACTORY QUALITY, PERFORMANCE, ACCURACY AND EFFORTS IS WITH THE USER. AO DOES NOT MAKE ANY REPRESENTATIONS OR WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, UNDER THE AGREEMENT. ANY AND ALL REPRESENTATIONS AND WARRANTIES OF AO UNDER OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE AGREEMENT ARE EXCLUDED TO THE EXTENT LEGALLY POSSIBLE, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO REPRESENTATIONS AND WARRANTIES
- OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, WORKMANLIKE EFFORT, ERROR-FREE ACCESS TO THE SITES OR USE THEREOF;
- REGARDING ANY DATA AND/OR INFORMATION PROVIDED OR MADE AVAILABLE BY AO OR A USER ON THE SITES OR ON ANY EXTERNAL WEBSITES LINKED TO THE SITES INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO INFORMATION BEING OF SATISFACTORY QUALITY, ADEQUACY, ACCURACY, TIMELINESS, COMPLETENESS, COMPLIANCE WITH LOCAL LAWS AS WELL AS THE REGULATIONS AND MEDICAL PRACTICE THEREOF; AND
- OF UNINTERRUPTED OR ERROR-FREE ACCESS OR USE OF THE SITES.
THE SITES DO NOT, AND IN NO WAY CONSTITUTE OR IMPLY THE ENDORSEMENT, RECOMMENDATION, OR APPROPRIATENESS OF AN ADVICE. AO DOES NOT SCREEN NOR IN ANY OTHER WAY EXAMINE THE INFORMATION UPLOADED BY ITS USERS ON THE SITES BUT SIMPLY PROVIDES THE PLATFORM.
ANY GRAPHIC OR PICTORIAL MATERIALS APPEARING ON THE SITES ARE DIGITIZED REPRODUCTIONS WHICH, THOUGH VIEWABLE, ARE NOT OF DIAGNOSTIC QUALITY AND ARE NOT DESIGNED NOR INTENDED TO REPLACE ORIGINAL IMAGES. THE DIGITIZED REPRODUCTIONS CONTAINED IN THE SITES ARE NEITHER DESIGNED NOR INTENDED TO BECOME A PERMANENT PART OF ANY PATIENT'S MEDICAL RECORD.
THE USER REPRESENTS AND WARRANTS THAT (I) THE USER HAS ALL NECESSARY POWER AND AUTHORIZATION TO ACCEPT THE GTC; (II) THESE GTC ARE LEGAL, VALID, BINDING AND ENFORCEABLE AGAINST THE USER; (III) THE USER'S ACCEPTANCE OF THESE GTC WILL NOT VIOLATE ANY LAW, RULE, REGULATION OR ORDER, OR ANY AGREEMENT, BINDING THE USER; (IV) AND THE USER WILL OBSERVE ALL APPLICABLE LAWS AND THE PROVISIONS OF THESE GTC.
4. No liability
TO THE FULL EXTENT PERMISSIBLE BY LAW, AO DISCLAIMS ANY AND ALL RESPONSIBILITY FOR ANY DAMAGES OR LOSSES (INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, PERSONAL INJURY, FINANCIAL LOSS, DAMAGES FOR LOSS IN BUSINESS PROJECTS, LOSS OF PROFITS OR OTHER CONSEQUENTIAL LOSSES) ARISING IN CONTRACT, TORT OR OTHERWISE FROM THE USE OF OR INABILITY TO USE THE SITES OR ANY MATERIAL APPEARING ON THE SITES, OR FROM ANY ACTION OR DECISION TAKEN AS A RESULT OF USING THE SITES OR ANY SUCH MATERIAL OR ANY OTHER ACT OR OMISSION IN CONNECTION WITH THE SITES.
5. Membership and Fees
The conditions for memberships, the applicable fees and the payment conditions are set forth on the Site. The respective provisions shall be integral part of this Agreement.
AO or the respective AO specialty is entitled to terminate the membership of the User, if any, with immediate effect for reasonable cause. In such a case, AO shall not be obliged to refund any monies paid to the AO or an AO specialty by the User.
If the User does not accept the termination, she or he has to inform AO within 20 days of the termination of AO or the respective AO specialty in writing. In such a case, the Board of Directors of the AO Foundation (AOVA) shall decide about the effectiveness of the termination within reasonable time. The decision of the AOVA shall be final and binding.
The usage of the Sites by AO and the services of AO under the Agreement connected therewith by AO are free of charge, unless otherwise indicated on the Sites.
AO reserves the right to charge for the usage of parts of the Sites and the services under the Agreement at any time subject to a respective modification of the Agreement according to Article 14 below.
6. Intellectual property rights
Unless otherwise stated in this Agreement, any and all intellectual property rights (including, but not limited to copyrights) in all data, information and material uploaded by the User (hereinafter the "User Material") issubject to Article 7 belowowned by User.
Prints or download extracts from the data, information or material of the Sites (hereinafter the "AO Material") as well as any other reproduction thereof are permitted for educational and research purposes or personal use only. None of the AO Material may be used for any commercial purpose by the User. Particularly, the User may not license, sublicense, sell, resell, transfer, assign, distribute, or otherwise exploit or make available to any third party the AO Material in any way.
No AO Material may be reproduced, stored in or transmitted on any other websites (including intranet sites) by the User nor is the User permitted to create any derivative works based on AO Material without written permission of AO.
Some names, instruments, treatments, logos, designs etc referred to on the Sites are protected by patents, trademarks, or other intellectual property rights even though specific reference to this fact is not made on the Sites. Therefore, the appearance of a name, instrument etc without designation as proprietary is not to be construed as a representation by AO that it is in the public domain.
7. User data license
In the course of visiting the Sites, the User may upload User Material. As between the Parties, the User shall remain the sole owner of all User Material, provided however that the User hereby grants to AO a worldwide, eternal, unlimited, non-revocable, and non-redeemable license to use, copy, distribute, display, disclose, and perform such User Material or parts of the User Material, to create derivative works thereof, and to sublicense such rights for any and all purposes. User shall have sole responsibility for the accuracy, quality, integrity, legality, reliability, appropriateness, and intellectual property ownership or right to use all User Material, and AO shall not be responsible or liable for the deletion, accuracy, correction, disclosure, destruction, damage, loss or failure to store any User Material. For the avoidance of any doubt, the license granted by the User to AO shall remain valid even if this Agreement is terminated for whatever reason.
Any User Material shall be de-personalized by the User before submitted to AO, ie, the User has to ensure that User Material does not qualify as personal data in the sense of Art. 3 let. a of the Swiss Act on Data Protection when submitted to AO. The User acknowledges that he have the sole responsibility that any and all User Material is fully de-personalized.
The User Material has to comply with all relevant laws and regulations as well as ethical and medical standards and may not (i) have an illegal, harmful, or harassing content or invade another's privacy, (ii) infringe rights of a third party, including any intellectual property rights, or (iii) contain viruses or any other computer codes, files or programs designed to interrupt, destroy, or limit the functionality of any computer software or hardware or telecommunications equipment.
If AO exploits the User Material, it will name the respective User to the extent reasonably possible. AO is, however, not obliged to pay to the User a royalty or other financial compensation for such exploitation.
8. Data Protection
AO shall comply with all applicable legal provisions regarding data protection. In particular, AO shall not provide or otherwise disclose any personal data of the User to any third party without authorization. Details on the use of the Users' personal data by AO are set forth in the Data Protection Policy of AO which is accessible on the website of AO.
9. Advertising material
Advertisers, if any, are responsible for ensuring that the User Material submitted for inclusion on the Sites complies with all relevant laws and regulations as well as ethical and medical standards. AO will not take responsibility for any error, omission or inaccuracy in advertising material. Appearance on the Sites does not constitute a guarantee or endorsement of the quality or value of a product or of the allegations made by the manufacturers.
10. Infringement and indemnification
If the User does not comply with these GTC, AO has the right to prevent the User from visiting the Sites and using the services connected therewith, and AO reserves the right to any legal action AO thinks is appropriate.
If, based on a written agreement between the User and AO, the User is entitled to provide access the Sites to third persons, the User represents that all such third persons using the Sites are contractually bound by these terms, conditions and disclaimers as well.
The User agrees to indemnify, defend and hold harmless AO, to the fullest extent permitted by law, against any cause of action, all liabilities, losses, costs or expenses (including reasonable fees and expenses of legal counsel) with respect to any claim by third parties arising out of the User's failure to perform its obligations under the Agreement.
11. No right to visit the Sites and modification of the Sites
Unless expressly stated in this or another written agreement between the Parties, AO has no legal duty to the User, and may at any time and without giving grounds prevent the User from visiting the Sites and using the services connected therewith.
AO is entitled without prior notice to the User in its free discretion
- to shut down the Sites temporarily or permanently at any time;
- to remove any and all content on the Sites;
- to modify the Sites and the services connected therewith.
12. Termination of the Agreement
Each Party may terminate this Agreement with immediate effect by email at any time.
Upon termination of the Agreement, the User shall not have access to the Site anymore without restriction. The user data licence according to Article 7 above shall under no circumstances be terminated due to the termination of this Agreement.
13. Force majeure
No Party shall be liable to the other if performance of any of its obligations hereunder is prevented, hindered, or delayed by the occurrence of circumstances beyond its control, which circumstances shall include, but shall not be limited to, any act of God, act of any government or other statutory undertaking, industrial dispute beyond the area of control of such Party, fire, explosion, accident and power failure, always provided (i) they constitute a force majeure event, ie, are beyond the control of the Party invoking it, and (ii) they are not the result of the failure of such Party to perform any of its obligations under the Agreement.
Following the occurrence of any such event the Party thereby affected shall notify the other Party in due time of such occurrence and such Party shall use its reasonable endeavours to overcome or to minimise the adverse effects thereof.
Performance of the affected and related obligations shall be postponed for a period equal to the time lost by reason of the delay. If as a result of force majeure a Party is rendered definitely unable to perform, or if the period of force majeure has lasted longer than three months or as soon as it is reasonably clear that it will last longer than three months, the other Party may, with immediate effect, terminate the Agreement in writing.
14. Modification of the Agreement
AO reserves the right to modify the Agreement at any time, without giving reasons. If the User does not object to the applicability of the revised Agreement within 20 days after receipt of said notice, the modified Agreement shall be deemed to be accepted by the User. If the User does not agree to any change in the GTC, the Agreement shall be terminated automatically.
The User shall not assign any rights and obligations under this Agreement without AO's prior written consent.
The Agreement constitutes the entire agreement between the Parties with respect to the subject matter of the Agreement.
Failure or neglect by AO to enforce any of the provisions of this Agreement shall not be construed or deemed to be a waiver of AO's rights nor shall this affect the validity of the whole or any part of this Agreement, nor prejudice AO's rights to take subsequent action.
The Parties are and remain independent parties. It is not the Parties intent to create and this Agreement does not create the formation of a partnership, joint venture or similar relationship between the Parties.
Should any provision of this agreement be invalid or unenforceable, the remaining provisions shall be valid. In the place of an invalid provision, a valid provision is presumed to be agreed upon by the Parties, which comes economically closest to the one actually agreed upon.
This Agreement is solely governed by substantive Swiss law, regardless of where the person visiting one or several Sites resides or where this person made his submission, posting, transaction or connection with one or several Sites.
All disputes arising out of this Agreement or in connection with this Agreement shall be solely and finally settled by a court of arbitration consisting of one arbitrator in accordance with the Swiss Rules of International Arbitration of the Swiss Chamber of Commerce. The place of arbitration shall be Zurich. The court of arbitration shall conduct the proceedings and all awards shall be rendered in the English language.
Data Protection Policy
2. Collection of Personal Data
In the event that you register on the AO Website, we store the following data about you:
- Data concerning identity
User name, password, user ID, primary email address, professional title, academic title, first name, middle initial, surname, suffix (provides additional information about the person), (second) academic title, gender, date of birth, nationalities
- Contact details
Primary language, organization/hospital, department, unit I (example: maxillofacial unit), unit II (example: division of plastic surgery, foot & ankle surgery), function/job title, address, city, state/province, postal code, country, assistant name, assistant email, assistant phone, telephone, fax, mailing/shipping address, home address
- Membership data
Home specialty (AOSpine, AOTrauma, AOCMF, AOVET), membership package, signup date, expiry date, award points, status points, associate points, membership status, about me, profile picture, voucher code
- Specialization data
Expertise/speciality, roles, interests
- AO functions/roles
Elected/nominated functions, faculty
- Educational history
Graduation from medical school, board certifications, fellowships, CV upload, publication list upload, AO course history (course name, type)
- Faculty data
Qualification, institution, degree, teaching languages (established year, language proficiency), expertise data (first year surgery involvement, procedures per year, teaching topics)
- Travel data
Preferred travel agent, favorite airline(s), favorite airline alliance(s), departure location (airport, city, etc), dietary request, seating preference, hotel room type, smoking preference, car type, passport number, passport issued in (city, country), passport issued on, passport valid until, first name in passport, family name (surname) in passport, frequent flyer information, favorite hotel chains, favorite rental companies, additional comments/requirements, accessibility, dietary preference
- Event data
Badge title, organization, first name, surname, degree postscript
- Financial data
Reimbursement information (reason for reimbursement-description, city, country, your role, budget provided by, claim, per diem fields, mileage, parking, transport, accommodation-based on CMM system, receipts, bank details (account, bank name, address, account holder name, account number, IBAN code, SWIFT/BIC, other info, comments)
You may change or remove information provided to AO by you at any time by clicking on the "edit" button of each section of your personal profile. A removal of mandatory information according to this Article 2 is only possible if you delete your profile according to Article 5 below. To delete your profile an email must be sent to an AO administrator (email-address indicated on the AO Website).
We may also collect and store transactional information based on your activities on the AO Website or that relates to your account and other information from your interaction with the AO Website as well as services and content thereon, including computer and connection information, statistics on page views, traffic to and from the AO Website, IP address and standard log information.
3. Use of Personal Data
You agree that we may use your personal information namely in connection with the following:
- History of conducted learning activities;
- Progress reports, tests and exam results;
- Assessment (learner assesses self) and evaluation (learner assesses activity) data;
- Certificates and confirmations obtained;
- CME accreditation related data (based on regulatory premises);
- Other purposes indicated on the AO Website.
We do under no circumstances sell or provide your personal data to third parties without your explicit consent. You agree that, depending on the technology, your data may be stored on servers worldwide to facilitate greater response rates.
4. Your Rights regarding your Personal Data
Upon request, we will provide you with comprehensive information about your personal data stored by us and/or with information regarding the use of such data. Furthermore, we will correct or delete all or part of your personal data if you wish so.
The competent body for your respective requests is:
AOTrauma/AOSpine/AOCMF/AOVET Community Development Manager
Phone: +41 44 200 24 20
Fax: +41 44 200 24 21
5. Deletion of your Profile
Upon your written request, we will close your profile and remove your personal data from the AO Website as soon as reasonably possible.
We use "cookies" (small files placed on your hard drive) to make the AO Website easier to use and customize our services, content and advertising.
With most browsers, you are able to erase cookies from your computer or block them. Reference is made to your browser instructions to learn more about these functions. However, doing so may impact your use of the AO Website.
We use several tools (encryption, passwords, physical security, etc.) in order to protect your personal data against unauthorized access and disclosure.