How Yelp Reviews Can Help Improve Patient Care, The New York Times, Opinion by Aaron E. Carroll

Citing a recent Health Affairs article, New York Times writer and professor at Indiana University School of Medicine Aaron E. Carroll highlighted a growing source for healthcare quality assessments – Yelp. While Carroll is quick to point out that many health care professionals argue “all the information we need should come from patients or from the medical record,” he notes that the Health Affairs study found Yelp reviews included most criteria found in traditional patient satisfaction surveys, and “also covered an additional 12 criteria not in the survey,” including “friendliness of ED staff” and “parking.”

The Margolin Group believes that as consumer-directed healthcare continues to grow (allowing patients to manage a greater portion of their own health care dollars), it will be important for healthcare organizations to design break-through answers to cost, quality, safety, service, consumer experience, access and efficiency issues to provide “real value for money” in health care. Visibly better care and coverage will help organizations cultivate positive “online reputations,” acknowledging that websites like Yelp, and RateMD will likely become critical sources of information for patients preparing to select a new doctor or hospital.

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