According to Pew data from blogger Nicola Ziady, 60 percent of e-patients engage with social media (sidestepping for now the question of how to *really* define an e-patient). What do they do online? According to Ziady’s data:
- 33% have gotten information about how to lose or control their weight
- 27% have gotten information about health insurance
- 24% have consulted rankings or reviews online of hospitals
- 12% have gotten information about how to stay healthy on an overseas trip
- 24% have consulted rankings or reviews of doctors
- 19% have signed up to receive updates about health or medical issues
- 13% have listened to a podcast about health or medical issues
- 5% have reviewed a doctor
And right at the bottom of the list we find this stat:
- 4% have reviewed a hospital
I don’t know about you, but that looks like a danger sign to me. Hospitals require such a HUGE investment of resources from patients — sometimes money, and sometimes just loyalty and energy — that you’d think they’d be raring to comment. Seemingly, they’re not.
To me, that’s much more striking than the low rate of comments on physicians, given that many of those encounters are routine.
I guess what I’m saying here is this, guys: What are we doing to leave patients so untouched, unconnected and unimpressed (maybe not disappointed, but not impressed) by their hospital stay that they do nothing to communicate about it on their own? Isn’t this death, at least, for services like labor and delivery where the gossip factor rates very highly in choosing a facility? Hey, in this situation, complaints may be better than silence.