Patient ratings and reviews now on Asante.org
Online reviews have become increasingly important to consumers as they make health care decisions, and a growing number of hospitals and clinics have moved ahead with plans to share patient experiences on their websites.
Most consumers now value provider reviews on social media and third-party websites as much or more than physician referrals. However, the problem with these sites is that reviews are often inadequate or misleading to consumers since so few patients take the time to leave them. Health care systems like Asante are well-positioned to help consumers by sharing the full spectrum of authentic patient experiences since feedback is already being collected to drive internal improvements.
Win Howard, CEO of Asante Three Rivers Medical Center, recognized this as an area of opportunity and commissioned a pilot project to add a rating and review feature to the Asante website in 2019. Over the past year he co-led the Three Rivers Surgical Services Management Council and together they persuaded a group of 20 surgeons and PA-Cs specializing in ENT, general surgery, colorectal surgery and orthopedics from APP in Grants Pass to participate.
“The biggest reason I wanted to do this is because consumers want to view online reviews when making health decisions,” Howard said. “Our website is our digital front door, and this feature helps us achieve our corporate goal of becoming more consumer friendly. It makes the decision for consumers to use our services easier, and that is even more important with COVID-19 here.”
The team’s hard work came to fruition on June 22 when hundreds of ratings and reviews began showing on the profile pages of providers in the pilot program. Each of the average ratings for these providers is 4.7 stars or higher on a five-star scale. Asante has good reason to take pride in these exceptional physicians; the ratings provide an authentic reflection of the patient experience. The only edits made to the reviews are to protect patient privacy and ensure content is suitable for all audiences.
The success of the rating and review feature will hinge on its ability to enhance provider’s reputations, attract new patients and rebuild consumer confidence in using Asante services — an especially valuable benefit during COVID-19, when consumers are prone to delaying important care.
Providers in the pilot program will receive increased promotion by having their star ratings displayed prominently in Google search results, our provider directory, and service pages that list providers in that specialty, such as the Orthopedic Surgery and Sports Medicine page.
A number of people across Asante deserve thanks for making this project possible including APP’s Grants Pass surgical team and the Asante patient experience team. Sharon Shearon in ITS also deserves thanks for serving as a bridge to coordinate secure monthly data exchanges between Asante’s patient experience partner, PRC, and Asante’s website partner Geonetric. Although I helped manage the project to completion, my predecessor, Philip Stanley, laid the groundwork.
Once the trial period is complete, Asante has plans to expand the rating and review feature to the rest of our APP physicians in the next fiscal year. Your thoughts and feedback are welcome in the comments section below.
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The era of Covid has placed many patients into an unacceptable Catch-22 situation. Those patients needing surgery face actual “either-or” situations; surgeries are being delayed indefinitely due to purported lack of staffing, or lack of available beds for expected and standard recovery. One the one hand, a patient may fully trust an Asante surgeon’s exceptional skill and professionalism, but then only to be faced with conflicting, untenable lack of recovery support at the hospital. This places the patient and family into an enormous area of confusion going into a needed surgery because “the hospital has no beds, no staff.” Though Covid has taxed the entire medical industry, one wonders what internal hospital policies have left hospitals so unprepared for this crisis. Furthermore, despite the high patient satisfaction ratings of surgeons at Three Rivers, is the hospital negating positive outcomes with unsafe policy decisions due to Covid? These are reasonable questions from the patient end.