Physician Reviews
You need a new doctor. Where do you begin?

1. Ask trusted friends and family about who they recommend and why.

2.  If you’ve just moved to a new area, join a community social media discussion group or Facebook Page. These are places people often post questions and share information about area medical care and doctors.

3.  Always do your research first (see resources below).  We do it for insurance, child care, pet care, etc.  Our healthcare provider, their education, certification(s), licensing, experience and track record are important. 

4.  You may want to call the provider ahead to ask if you can set up a pre-medical care ‘introduction appointment’. There's nothing that can replace an in-person meeting to see if their personality, communication style and professionalism meets your needs. This would be a discussion-only appointment when you bring your questions. A telemedicine (video conference) is also a possiblity. Some health insurance companies pay for these visits. Check with your insurance carrier first.

4. If they don’t allow for this type of pre-medical appointment, then use the beginning of your visit during your medical history discussion.  This is a good time to discuss your goals, preferences, any questions you have, and get a better feel for the provider’s personality style, medical care approach and values (Bring a notebook with your questions written down ahead of time).

5. Use more than one resources below and after a while, you may be able to see a pattern of review information that helps guide your decision.

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Resources 

NEW HAMPSHIRE

NH Board of Medicine, Submitting a Complaint
Online complaint forms and instructions on how to file and submit your complaint about a physician or physician's assistant or 'PA' licensed to practice in NH.

NH Board of Medicine, Frequently Asked Questions for Patients & Families

NH Medical Provider License Verification
From the NH Department of Professional Licensing. Look up a healthcare provider to confirm they are licensed to practice in NH and determine if they have any disciplinary actions issued by the Board.

NH Physician & Physician Assistant Disciplinary Actions 
NH Board of Medicine, Office of Professional Licensure. Discplinary actions are listed by year.

 

NATIONAL

Certfication Matters
Provides information on doctors who are Board Certified. Maintained by American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS). 

CMS Open Payment System
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid posts payments made to physicians (and teaching hospitals) from pharmaceutical companies. This may present conflicts of interest that patients may want to consider and/or discuss with their medical provider.  They have an easy-to-use search tool by physician name, hospital or by state.

DocInfo 
Sponsored by the Federation of State Medical Boards. Provides information on physician certifications, states they are licensed to practice, and whether they have any medical board disciplinary actions.
 

Healthgrades 
Doctor and hospital ratings with reviews by patients.  Select their 'Hospital Quality' title for information on what measures they use to determine hospital quality.

IPI rates the usefulness of online doctor, hospital, and nursing home report cards and rating sites. They use a letter-grading system.  It may help you sort through which sites to use.

Medicare Physician Compare
Basic information about providers: whether they accept Medicare, their specialty, board certifications, group and hospital affiliations. Site is maintained by US government's Medicare Insurance Program.

Rate My MD
RateMDs provides information, reviews and ratings on physicians, as well as giving patients the ability to share their own personal experiences.

US News & World Report
A good site to start with for finding doctors by state. It provides information on their education, certifications, how long they’ve been practicing, hospital affiliations, etc.

Vital Signs
Another health care rating site by ProPublica, it provides information on doctor prescribing patterns, how much money they receive from drug companies, and cost of office visits.

Yelp
This is a consumer-review & comment website. More and more, consumers are posting about their experiences with physicians and other medical providers.

 

Surgeon Rating Sites

Consumer Checkbook
A paid membership site that rates doctors on their surgical outcomes, patient reviews and recognition among their peers.

 

 

tip icon Tips & Tools 

When starting out searching for a doctor or specialist, be sure to first check with your health insurance company, including Medicare. Why? Because you want to be sure the doctor, surgeon or specialist you choose is covered by your insurance and to know if they are ‘in network’ or ‘out of network’.  Typically, out of network physicians or medical services cost more.  Most insurance companies have onlilne tools for finding this information, or you can call and ask for customer service. Asking for this information ahead of time can help you avoid surprise bills later.

 

News

Rating Doctors: What You Need To Know 
US News & World Repot, Ruben Castaneda, Feb. 15, 2018, 

Milwaukeee Journal Sentinel, John Fauber, Matt Lyma, Kristina Fiore, from MedPage Today, February 28, 2018
 

 

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