Tuesday, December 9, 2008

News You Can Use: Patients poo-poo quality rankings

When it comes to selecting a doctor or hospital, patients would rather consult friends and family rather than online quality rankings, research finds. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, less than 15% of Americans rely on quality data to make decisions about health care services.

"Virtually no patients look at them," Dr. Bryan Liang , executive director of the Institute of Health Law Studies at California Western School of Law in San Diego, told The Press-Enterprise. "The basic problem of these kinds of ranking systems is that patients do not choose on the basis of scores. They choose on the basis of personal familiarity and experience with the health care entity or provider."

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