In the era of the engaged patient, consumers shop around for healthcare services. When it comes to hospitals, they could consult several ratings programs for information on readmissions and hospital-acquired infection rates.
One reason may be that quality measures familiar to providers may mean little to patients. Now, a study suggests that healthcare consumers may be able to find reliable data on hospitals quality in a familiar place – Facebook.
A Massachusetts General Hospital study has found that hospitals with lower 30-day readmissions rates have higher ratings on Facebook than hospitals with high readmission rates.
“The potential impact of social media ratings on healthcare consumer decision-making must not be underestimated in this changing healthcare environment,” say the authors of a study published online by the Journal of General Internal Medicine.