Tuesday, October 30, 2007

JS Online: Do online reviews of doctors by patients hurt or help?

JS Online: Do online reviews of doctors by patients hurt or help?: "Hundreds of Wisconsin physicians are being rated on Internet sites such as RateMDs.com, Vimo.com and RevolutionHealth.com. From Rhinelander to Kenosha and Eau Claire to Appleton, patients are grading doctors from all specialties on their helpfulness, knowledge base, personal skills and punctuality. Advertisement Buy a link here According to a recent Forbes magazine article, this appears to be becoming a popular online activity, with some sites averaging 1,000 new reviews per day. Proponents of such sites argue that patients are customers who are paying for a service and should be able to openly express their level of satisfaction and that informed health consumers will make better choices about how to spend precious health care dollars. Critics complain the sites are defamatory and capricious. For example, customers are not qualified to judge a doctor's decision to order a particular test or procedure."

1 comment:

  1. Critics = Doctors with 'God complexes'

    Sure, patients aren't qualified to do their job, that's why they are paying a doctor; to help them figure it out what's wrong.

    It's like going to get a manicure. You may not know the techniques for how to do it perfectly, but you sure can tell when it's done poorly.

    Doctors are not above reproach and should welcome feedback to learn how to be better teachers. It's for the benefit of both the doctor and the patient and is essential in providing and receiving excellent medical care.

    Doctors need to be reminded that they are providing a service (medical care) not a product (a patient with no complaints).

    Shifting the focus from achieving an asymptomatic patient to an informed and educated one who can heal themselves should be the ultimate goal of any healthcare professional.

    It's just simply not in the doctor's best interest financially to educate patients to heal themselves. Well patients don't make return visits and are, therefore, bad for business.

    But why do doctors go into medicine? Primarily to help people, but due to the high cost of medical school, they become more desperate to dig themselves out of debt.

    Unfortunately, their focus shifts from symptom reduction to personal debt reduction.

    Older doctors aren't wiser because they have more experience. They simply have less debt and can afford to spend more time teaching their patients like students rather than widgets on an assembly line.


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