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Do Online Reviews of Physicians Reflect Healthcare Outcomes?

  • Danish H. Saifee
  • Indranil Bardhan
  • Zhiqiang (Eric) ZhengEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 10347)

Abstract

Patients are increasingly using online reviews to choose physicians. However, it is not known whether online reviews accurately capture the true quality of care provided by physicians. This research addresses this issue by empirically examining the link between online reviews of a physician and the actual clinical outcomes of patients treated by the physician. Specifically, this study uses online reviews from Vitals.com, and combines that data with patient health outcomes data collected from Dallas-Fort Worth Hospital Council. Our econometric analyses show that there is no clear relationship between online reviews of physicians and their patients’ health outcomes, such as readmission and ER visit rates. Our results imply that online reviews may not be as helpful in the context of healthcare as they are for other experience goods such as books, movies, or hotels. Our findings have important implications for healthcare providers, healthcare review websites, and healthcare consumers.

Keywords

Online reviews Healthcare Clinical outcomes Topic modeling Sentiment analysis Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Danish H. Saifee
    • 1
  • Indranil Bardhan
    • 1
  • Zhiqiang (Eric) Zheng
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Jindal School of ManagementUniversity of Texas at DallasRichardsonUSA

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