Physician Transparency Empowers Patients

Patient Satisfaction Reviews

Candid online physician ratings--monitored by an objective third party--are giving patients a new tool to help choose the best doctors for them.

Northwell Health Physician Partners recently started posting patient reviews online, making it the first large medical group in the region to do so.

Ratings and comments come from more than half a million randomly administered surveys that Press Ganey collects and monitors. This is a significant contrast to Yelp, Healthgrades and other sites that allow anyone to post ratings of a physician, whether or not that person has actually met the doctor.

The program delivers straight truth to consumers, screening only for patient privacy and unsuitable language, if necessary. Respondents comment on and rate aspects of the physician/patient relationship, such as the doctor’s ability to communicate in a courteous, compassionate manner that is informative and easy to understand. Northwell Health’s Find-A-Doctor profile pages reflect 18 months of patient feedback for physicians practicing in one of the medical group’s 400-plus sites.

Trustworthy Patient Feedback

“We use transparency to continuously improve as we strive to exceed our patients’ expectations,” said Ira Nash, MD, a practicing cardiologist and senior vice president and executive director of Northwell Health Physician Partners. “The ratings reflect the true voice of the patients. They’re also a trustworthy source of information, compared to review sites that can’t be verified.”

Greater transparency is a cornerstone of recent health care legislation, and the medical group is at the forefront of the movement. According to Press Ganey, Northwell Health Physician Partners is one of a handful of large medical group practices in the US to post patient satisfaction scores and only the second in the Northeast.

“Patients have many options for their care, and a positive patient/physician dynamic is central to great care,” said Dr. Nash. “By being transparent with these ratings, we are providing patients with validated information to help them choose the physicians that best meet their needs.”

Northwell Health Physician Partners (formerly the North Shore-LIJ Medical Group) offers more than 450 outpatient offices throughout metropolitan New York. With 2,300-plus doctors in all specialty areas, it is the seventh-largest medical group in the US.

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