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Doctor-Rating Websites

Doctor-Rating Websites Often Inaccurate

Topic: Doctor-Rating Websites Often Inaccurate

Many people rely on websites where patients can review their physicians to help them choose a doctor or assess their current provider, but the information on these sites can be misleading. A systematic literature review from the University of Buffalo found that many physician-rating websites (PRWs) include inaccurate information and data quality issues.

For the study, researchers looked at 49 literature papers regarding online patient-reported physician ratings and reviews. They implemented a conceptual data quality framework that was designed to analyze the PRW data grouped into four distinct categories:

  • Intrinsic data quality (accuracy, objectivity, believability, reputation)
  • Contextual data quality (value-added, relevancy, timeliness, completeness, appropriate amount of data)
  • Representational data quality (interpretability, ease of understanding, representational consistency, concise representation)
  • Accessibility data quality (accessibility, access security)

The researchers found that 53% of the sites contained intrinsic data quality errors (accuracy, objectivity, reputation, and believability), and 61% presented contextual data quality issues (relevance, value addition, timeliness, and completeness).1

There were also other problems, such as system interfaces that were not easy to understand, as well as questionable security and safety of data.

“There needs to be stricter rules,” Pavankumar Mulgund, PhD, lead author, clinical assistant professor of management science and systems at the University at Buffalo School Of Management, tells Verywell. “We need to avoid anonymous ratings, reveal their business models and source of revenue to the end-users, and flag and remove potentially fake reviews by making use of data science and AI.”

Topic Discussed: Doctor-Rating Websites Often Inaccurate

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