Tag Archives: doctor

Doctor, my nays: Physicians strike back at online reviews

scrubsLike restaurants and hair stylists, doctors now have to face the public, in the form of reviews posted on the Internet. Some are trying to get patients to sign promises not to post negative comments — or any comments at all. It’s even spawned at least one new business: Medical Justice, in Greensboro, North Carolina, sells a standard waiver agreement.

Patients who sign agree not to post online comments about the doctor, “his expertise and/or treatment.”

It seems like swimming upstream in the Internet age, but let’s do some point/counterpoint:

Some sites “are little more than tabloid journalism without much interest in constructively improving practices,” and their sniping comments can unfairly ruin a doctor’s reputation, [Medical Justice founder Dr. Jeffrey] Segal said….

John Swapceinski, co-founder of RateMDs.com, said that in recent months, six doctors have asked him to remove negative online comments based on patients’ signed waivers. He has refused. “They’re basically forcing the patients to choose between health care and their First Amendment rights, and I really find that repulsive.”…

“Are there bad doctors out there? Absolutely, but this is not a good way to figure it out,” [Chicago gynecologist Lauren] Streicher said.

Ars techica comments:

Review sites will only continue to increase in popularity—though potential customers should always take what they read online with a grain of salt. Instead of fighting the trend, doctors need to embrace the new reality and maybe even use the reviews as an opportunity to improve themselves.

[Image: Scrubs, by ndanger]

PRSCRPTN 4U kthxbai – consulting your doctor by SMS

Tattooed guy using a cellphone I think the most surprising thing about this is that it’s taken so long for someone to do it. Brooklyn medical practitioner Dr. Jay Parkinson offers a unique service to his young hipster-freelance clientele – for a yearly fee, they can get two home visits and unlimited consultations by text message or email. Not only does this make it far easier for his patients to get the advice they need at the time they really need it, it keeps Dr. Parkinson’s practice overheads nice and low, and leaves him time to indulge in his own creative pursuits as a photographer. The first practice in my town to offer this service will be getting my subscription fee in cash, with a smile. [Image by ElvertBarnes]

[tags]health, medicine, doctor, consultation, technology, business[/tags]