Before the Internet, it was difficult for patients to publicly review a physician’s reputation. Today, people rely on the internet to research physicians before making an appointment. Presently, there are dozens of online websites and social media platforms that review doctors. And, it has become a growing trend. The scary part about Yelp, Healthgrades, Vitals and others, is that one bad review from a patient often misrepresents the quality care and patient interaction you are providing. A recent Physician Practice story, points to a survey done by the Boston-based health tech company Nuance. It shows that more than half of the 3,000 Millennials surveyed use online reviews to shop for a physician.
But how accurate is the information people are getting on the Internet, especially when it comes to physician reviews? Doctors found some reviews to be warranted, but others were not. One internal medicine physician named Ira Nash at the North Shore-LIJ Medical Group said, “I’ve found them to be a little frustrating because for most of the online review sites, there was no way for me to be sure people writing the reviews had actually seen me in the office.” The information that is being spread about physicians cannot always be verified, so there is room for fabrication. A patient with a grudge has an opportunity to spread false information about their doctor.
While many physicians aren’t happy with online reviews, there is some good news. The Nuance study demonstrates how more patients are coming to see their doctors armed with health information they found online. A more educated patient makes it easier for physicians to provide good health care.
In summary, the best way for physicians to market themselves is to provide good service to all patients! At the same time, it is worth investing to publicize your practice and ensure your online image is a good one. That’s where a marketing communications firm can help. With a team like PS Medical Marketing on your side, we can help build your online reputation with positive information and good reviews. Contact PS Medical Marketing at 630-212-1226.