Physician and Patient Views on Public Physician Rating Websites: A Cross-Sectional Study
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CitationHolliday, Alison. 2019. Physician and Patient Views on Public Physician Rating Websites: A Cross-Sectional Study. Doctoral dissertation, Harvard Medical School.
AbstractPurpose: Numerical ratings and narrative comments about individual physicians are increasingly available on public websites. The objective of this study was to assess patient and physician views on physician rating websites.
Methods: Design was a cross-sectional physician (electronic) and patient (paper) surveys conducted in August 2015. Participants included 1,936 physicians (response rate 43%, n=828) affiliated with one of 4 hospitals in a single large accountable health care organization in eastern Massachusetts; and 1,461 adult patients (response rate 34%, n= 494) that received care in this system in May 2015. The main measures were use of physician rating websites and support for
making physician reviews obtained from health system patient experience surveys publicly available.
Results: 53% of physicians and 39% of patients reported having visited a physician rating website at least once. Physician support for sharing narrative comments obtained from patient
experience surveys steadily declined when considering sharing within their own practice (33%), within their entire health care organization (28%), and publicly online for all consumers (21%).
One-half (51%) of patients would like patient comments to be shared publicly online. The majority of physicians (78%) believed that posting patient comments online would have a negative effect on physician job stress; while smaller proportions perceived a negative effect on the physician-patient relationship (46%), health care overuse (34%), and patient-reported experiences of care (33%). Over one-quarter of patients (29%) believed that publication of their
narrative comments would cause them to be less open.
Conclusions: Support for public sharing of health system patient experience survey data is not universal, and physicians and patients are not fully aligned. Health system leaders should take actions to promote transparency and engage patients, while minimizing physician job stress.
Citable link to this pagehttp://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:41971526