Online Patient Reviews Good Predictor of Hospital Quality

Original Post on:
By: Joyce Frieden

Yelp compares favorably with more traditional quality measures

WASHINGTON — If patients need to figure out which hospital or medical practice in their area is of the highest quality, they wouldn’t do too badly by looking online … at review sites like Yelp, several speakers said here Thursday.

“We’re starting to see a correlation between what you find in online reviews and traditional indicators of quality,” Amy Shefrin, of the New York State Health Foundation, said at the Health Datapalooza conference sponsored by AcademyHealth.

It’s not necessarily surprising that people are turning to Yelp to determine which doctor or hospital to go to, she said. “Yelp enabled patients to do it themselves,” rather than rely on more traditional healthcare quality sites. “Patients can speak in their language, users can tailor their search to their own search terms, and it values patient experience.”

According to a 2016 survey of 4,000 consumers by Oliver Wyman, 83% of respondents said patient-generated reviews were influencing their choice of physician, said Shefrin.

Andrea Ducas, of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, noted that according to the survey the top five qualities patients looked for in a medical practice were:

  • Treats patients with respect
  • Accepts my insurance
  • Shares in decision-making
  • Responsiveness to phone calls
  • Professional skill

Surprisingly, when patients do an online physician search…

Continue Reading: