I stumbled across an interesting website this morning- you can check it out at HealthGrades.com. HealthGrades.com is a basically a watchdog site where you can look up information on any doctor, including whether or not he/she has any malpractice settlements in California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia or West Virginia.
In addition to doctor reports, the site also gives patient safety ratings on local hospitals and nursing homes. I actually experimented with the nursing home feature to see what kind of information was returned. Surprisingly, their reports were very comprehensive and provided a lot of useful information for those looking for a quality nursing home facility.
And while the nursing home information that I pulled up was free, the medical malpractice search was not. The site charged a fee of $7.95 for a one-time malpractice settlement search and then an additional $4.95 for a monthly doctor update. For those who remain undeterred by the initial fees, here”s what the national media has to say about the site:
Find the Best Doc – Rating Systems for Doctors
“Aren”t there already Web sites out there that provide these types of ratings? Couldn”t I look you up on the Internet and try to find out more about you, Dr. Gupta?”
“Yes, you could and people have already done that… There is a Web site HealthGrades that you can do that sort of thing. You go on there and type in your doctor”s name to get a report. Some of these reports have a fee where you actually pay for them but some of them are free. You look up the types of procedures the person does and there is patient feedback”
– CNN News, January 8, 2008
Rating Your Doctor
“Word of mouth has always played a big role in medicine. A doctor”s reputation is constantly being shaped by conversations among current and potential patients…
Online services like HealthGrades.com already analyze public and private records on physicians, hospitals and nursing homes, providing a more detached look at how well they perform…”
– TIME Magazine, January 4, 2008
Free Legal Advice: Medical Malpractice