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Many Parents Don't Trust Online Doctor's Ratings

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Monday, 21 Mar 2016 01:22 PM

Checking online reviews has become routine for making decisions on everything from cars to restaurants, but most parents view them with skepticism when choosing a doctor for their children – or themselves, a new national poll shows.

People are increasingly looking at online doctor’s ratings when choosing a physicians, but the poll finds that more than two-thirds believe at least some are fake, while slightly fewer say there are not enough ratings to make a good decision, according to a report on the results from C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital in Ann Arbor, Mich.

Nearly one-third of parents report looking at online doctor ratings for themselves or a family member over the past year, with mothers more likely than fathers to visit such websites – 36 percent compared to 22 percent, respectively.

Among parents who have considered online ratings, two-thirds say they either chose or avoided doctors based on what they read. Also, among those who selected a doctor based on the ratings, 87 percent say the rankings accurately reflected their subsequent experiences.

Older parents also generally had more concerns about online doctor ratings than younger parents. Of those age 30 and older, 71 percent were concerned about the possibility of fake reviews compared to 59 percent under the age of 30.

“Doctor rating sites have the potential to help make the patient-physician relationship more service-oriented. In order for online rating sites to become a more accepted and useful tool, doctors will need to be more engaged in the process, in ways that assure that ratings are authentic,” said Dr. David Hanauer, a hospital pediatrician and lead author of the report on the poll, which was conducted by GfK Research.

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When it comes to online rankings, many people find them very useful for making choices on everything from cars to restaurants, but such usefulness may not extend to doctor's rankings, a new survey finds.
Parents, doctors, ratings, online, family, health
Monday, 21 Mar 2016 01:22 PM
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