Healthgrades is providing a a flawed review system of physicians without any opportunity for text information despite allowing very negative reviews.
I have begun to consult with numerous physicians, and have a list of at least 40 physicians with similar issues. I have no reviews online, except one very negative review, with all 1's. Some of my colleagues report that they are reviewed for things that are not their field for example "ease of appointment booking" when they are in the ER. My review is 1/5 for things like the cleanliness of my office, when in fact this is a standard practice, and is factual, not an opinion. Reporting our office is un-clean is tantamount to blaming food poisoning on a restaurant. Reviews should of course continue, but for negative reviews there is no opportunity to place text. FOr me, for example, I received all 1s, for my communication, my knowledge, my office staff, my cleanliness, and my wait time (greater than 45 minutes -- which has not happened). I do not find this feedback helpful, and am unable to learn from this, which is the point of these reviews. In addition, I am concerned that there is no verification process that the person was ever even in our office. At present, I have proven this by creating several false reviews for other MDs, and the screening process (which is to verify that their email is correct) failed. I recently explained this at a NON physician forum and people were surprised. Patients assume there is some validity to these reviews.
I have begun to contact the press, and additionally have raised that I cannot be sure that these reviews are not planted by Healthgrades themselves. Their response is to tell us to ask other patients to review us. This increases their traffic. I have the names of at least 10 other physicians, and growing, whom have only 1 review online, and it is a VERY negative review by healthgrades. It's very suspicious that they would stand to gain from planting a negative review.
In medicine, reputation is everything. Businesses like Healthgrades should share some of the responsiblity in providing this, rather than excusing themselves as a third party player. There are some physicians whom the Board of Medicine in their state is pursuing action, and they have 5/5 reviews. Education regarding the validity of these reviews should be provided. In my mind, the reviewers must be reviewed.
Is this a Better Business Bureau issue, yes it is-- you can be sure. For them to have a high rating with the number of complaints is very disappointing.
My reputation can be damaged easily online. I have worked very hard to get here and made many sacrifies. For someone to achieve
I believe that creating discourse between said business and a physician group would be helpful. Perhaps if Healthgrades would show some genuine effort to allow comments and text in the review, and mandate said comments for a very negative review. I also would like proof that the 1/5 reviews that occur as the initial review with an organization are not falsely planted.
My aspirations are lofty, optimistic, perhaps unrealistic. But, consumers are believing and using these reviews, and they are not trustworthy. I think that this is newsworthy. Lastly, our reputations are being damaged, and there is great precedence with YELP that damaging online reputations has serious consequence. In order for reviews to be of value to the consumer and the reviewed, it needs to provide valuable feedback.
Dear Dr. ******,
We appreciate your feedback via the BBB. I am pleased to let you know that Healthgrades is at the end of internal development that will allow patients to leave comments in a review. These free form comments will still be tied to the ratings however, this is coming soon!
Healthgrades operates a website which provides information on healthcare providers as a free service to consumers, patients and other healthcare professionals. In its provision of this service, Healthgrades aggregates information related to provider practices from publicly available sources and accepts user responses to a standard multiple choice survey.
Our patient experience survey provides healthcare consumers with the capability to evaluate their experience with a provider by having them respond to a series of predefined questions, in which they provide a numerical rating. Each provider's Overall Patient Experience Score is based on an aggregation of individual patient satisfaction scores and is solely based upon the individual users' own experiences.
Highlighting the fact all such responses represent individual opinions is a hyperlink on each provider's profile called, "Patient Satisfaction". Clicking this link offers the following explanation in part: "Patient satisfaction ratings are personal opinions. So before you chose this doctor, take into account the number of surveys they have and all aspects of their background - education, training and specialized experience - to ensure that they are the right fit for you."
Finally, You have inquired regarding the veracity of the patient surveys relied upon by Healthgrades. We do inform the user that by completing the survey they are acknowledging they or a family member have visited the provider. In addition, Healthgrades currently sends the user an email requiring the user to return to the website to validate and publish their ratings. Healthgrades relies on the veracity of the persons completing the surveys.
Healthgrades Operating Company, Inc