The Importance of “Rate My Doctor” Services

The Importance of “Rate My Doctor” Services

Nov 11 2020

In our increasingly digital world, online ratings are becoming more and more important.

Americans are turning to the internet for recommendations on the latest movies, restaurants and hotels. Online reviews are considered more trustworthy than ever, with almost 80% of consumers trusting them as much as personal recommendations, according to BrightLocal.

Another service that has valuable online ratings that might surprise you?

Health care.

Think back to the last time you selected a doctor. Did you check an online rating website? You probably didn’t, and you wouldn’t be alone. Only 65% of adults are aware these resources exist, according to the Journal of American Medical Association.

There are a variety of online resources to consult when it comes to finding a physician for you or your family. The two most popular sources are Healthgrades and Yelp. Closely behind in ratings are RateMDs and Vitals.

Don’t take a shot in the dark when it comes to the professional you trust with your health.

Don’t take a shot in the dark when it comes to the professional you trust with your health. Whether it’s your primary care physician or a specialist, research the doctors in your area by using these simple online tools. The access to third-party reviews, provided by patients just like you, can assist in that research process and help you make an informed choice.

Online rating sites with reviews by everyday consumers offer insight into multiple aspects of a provider’s practice, including knowledge, time spent with patients, and even the cleanliness and comfort of the office itself.

In addition to crowdsourced review sites, many health plans offer reviews as well. These reviews are typically based on measurements that determine a physician’s quality of care. The measurements include how well a doctor performs in the areas of preventive care, control of chronic disease and patient satisfaction.

It is important to note, however, that because online reviews are based on the experiences of other patients, opinions are going to vary widely. Reviews are often posted after an unusually positive or negative experience, and that can skew ratings. It’s important to read the reviews carefully rather than simply looking at a provider’s rating. This will help you notice patterns in the reviews and make a more informed decision.

Some questions to keep in mind when reading reviews:

  • Are the reviews all from the same time period, or is there a good mix of reviews from a broad time period?
  • Do negative reviews mention specific issues?
  • Do the same issues keep popping up in negative reviews?
  • Do complaints about the provider appear to be resolved over time? For example, perhaps there were multiple complaints about long wait times in 2013, but only one in 2014. That could mean the provider has addressed the issue.

Additionally, you can always call the providers and ask them about issues presented in the online reviews.

Perhaps the most important part of the online review process is the sharing of your own experiences. Contribute to someone else’s process by sharing your feedback on your health care services and physicians so others can benefit.

Online reviews for doctors are creating a dialogue where there previously wasn’t one. With the growing trend of transparency in health care, patients now have more freedom in the plans they choose, the doctors they see, and above all, how they want to spend their health care dollars.

Searching for a new physician isn’t something that should be taken lightly, but online rating systems can help make the process a little less daunting and ultimately, lead to a valuable patient doctor relationship. If you didn’t find a healthcare provider or are looking for a new healthcare plan, let us help you!

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