Physician Ratings Published on Healthcare Organizations’ Websites: Are They Biased?

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2018-01-03
Authors
Kordzadeh, Nima
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In today’s age of social media, individuals use physician-rating websites (PRWs) to find information about healthcare providers and make decisions on which providers to choose accordingly. In line with this trend, healthcare organizations such as clinics and hospitals offer their own physician-rating platforms and mechanisms. However, a major concern regarding this form of privately-administered rating mechanism is the potentially high level of bias that may make the ratings published on those websites inaccurate and unreliable. In this study, we examined this form of bias. We used two hospital websites and four independent PRWs including RateMDs, HealthGrades, Vitals, and Google Reviews to collect, compare, and analyze patient satisfaction scores associated with a total of 569 physicians working in two hospitals located in Utah. The results of the analysis of variance (ANOVA), paired t-tests, and box plots demonstrated that, as hypothesized, the ratings published on the hospitals’ websites had significantly higher mean values and narrower distributions than those published on the independent PRWs. Our findings offer important implications for research and practice.
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Social Media and Healthcare Technology, Biased reviews, online reviews, physician ratings, patient satisfaction, social media
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8 pages
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Proceedings of the 51st Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences
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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
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