Internal Patient Satisfaction VS Online Physician Reviews Sites

Your organization may be considering, or already using an Internal Patient Satisfaction Score (IPS) System. These are internal systems used by healthcare providers and healthcare networks that rate patient satisfaction of physicians. The idea is simple – send your patients a survey after a physician-visit and ask how happy they are with the physician and overall experience. These results are then recorded and displayed on the

Many large healthcare organizations such as Kaiser Permanente or the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center are using these Internal Patient Satisfaction Score Systems.  

The article Physician Rating Websites Versus Internal Patient Satisfaction Scores At a Large Cancer Center claims that their study proves that internal systems are superior to external review sites.  While we don’t disagree that internal review systems provide some value – we don’t believe that they replace the need for managing your public-facing online review site profiles.

Nobody trusts self-administered, self-supported review systems.  Would you trust your local used-car dealer to say, “This car is a 5-Star in every way!”  Nope.  The same goes for any service or product that is being reviewed by the owner, seller, or parent organization.  Who would you trust to provide unbiased feedback regarding a hotel or restaurant?  The hotel’s own website that says, “Our guests rate us 5-Stars!” or TripAdvisor’s reviewers that say, “Beware, this hotel stinks.  3-Stars at best.”  The answer is obvious – people trust independent review sources far more than self-administered, self-governed services.

Physicians should be concerned about Internal Patient Satisfaction Scoring Systems, too.  The problem is these reviews are not portable.  If you spend 5 years at an organization that focuses energy on their IPS scores and you leave for a private practice or other physician group – you will lose all of your patient reviews.  The problem is the *real* owner of those reviews and the owner of the physician reputation is the organization administering the internal patient survey and scores.  NOT the physician themselves.