7.3 C
New York
Friday, March 31, 2023

Buy now

Doctor Rating and Review WebMD Physician Directory 2021

How to Use Online Ratings for a Doctor

Medically Reviewed by Sarah Goodell on September 18, 2020


Looking for an exceptional doctor? If you’re like most people, you rely on word of mouth. You can also go online to look up health care providers in your community and find out how they rate.

Before you get started, there are a few things you should keep in mind:

  • These sites use only patient reviews to rank doctors. This means the ratings are based more on opinion than data showing how well a doctor provided treatment or care.
  • Some rating websites may promote doctors who have a paid rather than a free profile.
  • If you have questions, ask your health care providers. They can help explain what the rankings may mean — and what they don’t mean.
  • Use the information to help you decide. But don’t rely on it entirely. Consider what else you know, too.

You’ll want to do some homework so you know what the ratings mean. Here’s a look at three health care rating websites and how their reviews work.


Reviews: Doctors and dentistshttps://8cb34edfccb5c1cc4b0b81fcf7ffb1b3.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-38/html/container.html

Rating format: Percentage of patients that recommend the health provider. Each professional is ranked based on the criteria you selected for sorting.

What you can find: A list of specialists near you that you can sort based on what’s most important to you. For instance, you can sort by quality and patient feedback, type of insurance they accept, distance from you, and the doctor’s gender.

Details you can see: Directions and maps. How long health professionals have been in practice, their education and training, licensing and certification, how many office locations they have, hospital affiliations, what types of insurance they cover, languages spoken, and whether they are accepting new patients.

What the rating is based on: Online patient satisfaction reviews.

What you can do: You can look up a rating or add a review. You can rate the doctor’s staff and wait time. You can also rate how well the doctor listens and explains medical conditions. The site uses a 5-star rating system.

Note: This website takes paid advertisements from providers. Doctors that have paid a fee to the website are listed at the top of your search as “featured.”

WebMD Reviews Guidelines

By submitting a review on the WebMD Physician Directory, you agree to the WebMD Terms and Conditions and to the following review guidelines:

  1. Your review must involve your own experience with the provider and should not be based on what you’ve heard from someone else;
  2. Your review must not include any personally identifiable information or any confidential, privileged or other information that you are not allowed to share with others (including information protected by contractual or non-disclosure obligations);
  3. Your review must not contain any information relating to any of your medical or health conditions such as details with respect to any of your symptoms, any medical diagnosis or any prescriptions that you are taking.;
  4. Your review must involve either your personal opinion of the provider and/or any factual statements that are true and accurate;
  5. Your review must not contain content that is unlawful, obscene, defamatory, threatening, harassing, abusive, slanderous, or hateful to any person or entity (as determined by WebMD in its sole discretion);
  6. Your review must not include advertisements or solicitations;
  7. Your review must not include “spam” or other content that significantly detracts our users’ experience with the WebMD Site; and
  8. Your review must not violate the privacy, publicity, intellectual property, or any other rights of any other person or entity.

WebMD reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to remove reviews that do not meet these guidelines or the terms set forth in the WebMD 


Reviews: Patient ratings for doctors.

Rating format: A scoring system up to 5.

What you can find: A specialist near you, the gender you prefer, one that’s accepting new patients, one that’s rated.

Details you can see: When the doctor was last reviewed, number of ratings, average rating out of 5, educational background, hospital affiliations, languages spoken. 

What the rating is based on: Online patient-satisfaction reviews.

What you can do: You can look up a rating or add a review. You can rate the doctor’s staff and wait time. You can also rate how helpful and knowledgeable the doctor is. The site uses a 5-point rating system.

Note: This website takes paid advertisements from doctors.

More Patients Are Checking Doctor-Rating Web Sites

But just how trustworthy these reviews are isn’t clear

HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, Feb. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) — More Americans are choosing their doctor the same way they settle on a car or TV: with the help of online ratings, a new study suggests.

Websites such as Healthgrades.com and RateMDs.com offer people a way to look up local doctors and see patient reviews. And based on the new findings, many patients are putting that information to use.

In a survey of more than 2,100 Americans, researchers found that two-thirds knew that doctor-rating sites exist. And of those surveyed, one-quarter had used the sites in the past year.

Those rates are higher than what’s been seen in past studies, said lead researcher Dr. David Hanauer, of the University of Michigan Medical School in Ann Arbor.

“So it looks like there has been increased use over time,” Hanauer said.

More important, he added, people who visit the sites use the information to make decisions. In this survey, 35 percent of site users picked a doctor because of a good rating, while 37 percent avoided a doctor with a poor rating, the investigators found.

But whether that’s a good thing isn’t clear, Hanauer’s team noted in the Feb. 19 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

“We don’t really know how trustworthy the ratings on these sites are,” Hanauer said.

Plus, sites differ in how they operate. On a general site such as Yelp.com, where you can rate anything from restaurants to doctors, users award “stars” and leave comments. The situation is different on Healthgrades, which says it gets more than 250 million visits a year.

There, users fill out a standard patient-satisfaction survey, which asks about areas such as the doctor’s communication skills, the friendliness of the office staff, and whether it’s easy to get an urgent appointment.

Beyond that, Healthgrades pulls together different pieces of objective information, said Evan Marks, the company’s executive vice-president for informatics and strategy.

That includes information on a doctor’s board certifications, types of procedures offered, and which insurance plans the office accepts. It also lists a doctor’s hospital affiliations, and offers information on how well those hospitals perform — which is collected from government data.

“It’s a very comprehensive compendium of information,” Marks said. However, he added, “I don’t think anyone should base a decision on patient ratings alone.”

One problem is that many doctors might have only a few patients who completed surveys, which could skew their ratings. One patient who has a bad experience could send a doctor’s rating into the basement, for example.

Still, Hanauer said, there are few ways for people to get more subjective information about doctors, other than asking family and friends.

“So these sites do seem to be filling a void,” Hanauer explained.

Aside from whether the current trend is good or bad, the reality is that “the next generation of health care consumers is going to be using online resources,” said Ritu Agarwal, who directs the Center for Health Information and Decision Systems at the University of Maryland in College Park.

especially online reviews and ratings posted on doctor review sites — are one of the most important factors in the overall success of any healthcare organization.

More than ever, patients are visiting numerous medical doctor review websites to find a new healthcare provider, and reviews are influencing their decisions. According to customer reviews research:

  • 69.9% see positive doctor reviews as “very” or “extremely” important.
  • 72% use reviews on doctor rating sites as the first step to finding a new doctor.
  • 60.8% of consumers avoid doctors based on negative online reviews.

By claiming a profile on top doctor review sites, healthcare groups can improve their online visibility, capture valuable patient feedback, and drive patient acquisition. This is the first and crucial step to maintaining an effective local listing management strategy. To make the most out of your online reputation, start with these top doctor review sites:

The Doctor Review Sites Worth Claiming

Getting a large online footprint doesn’t mean that every healthcare group needs to claim a profile on every doctor review site available. Instead, teams should focus their time and effort to claim profiles on review sites that already cater to a specific and garner plenty of traffic because of its popularity.

The sites below meet one or both of those criteria. Healthcare reputation teams should check if their organization is already a part of one or more of the many popular review sites below.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisement -

Latest Articles