Rating Doctors

May 5, 2000 • Volume 10, Issue 17
Do public “report cards” improve medical care?
By Sarah Glazer

Introduction

Doctors, hospitals and health maintenance organizations are coming under increasing pressure to disclose medical data that could help consumers make more informed decisions. (Photo Credit: Corbis Images)
Doctors, hospitals and health maintenance organizations are coming under increasing pressure to disclose medical data that could help consumers make more informed decisions. (Photo Credit: Corbis Images)

Recent publicity over medical mistakes has revived a longstanding critique of the quality of American medicine. Just as harmful to patients as outright errors, experts warn, is the profession's reluctance to adopt proven treatments. Hundreds of government and professional guidelines aimed at bringing doctors up to date have gathered dust on physicians' shelves. Doctors have traditionally resisted public disclosure of their failure rates, but some states are already publishing such information. And several big employers are rewarding consumers that use highly rated hospitals. Unless consumers have a reliable way to distinguish good doctors from bad, medical quality will never improve, consumer advocates contend. An Internet-savvy public may soon demand the right to know more.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Doctors
Aug. 28, 2015  Doctor Shortage
May 05, 2000  Rating Doctors
Jan. 27, 1989  Too Many Doctors?
Nov. 25, 1977  Medical Education
Mar. 13, 1968  Medical Education
Nov. 09, 1960  Doctor Supply and Medical Education
Feb. 14, 1951  Medical Manpower
Mar. 23, 1943  Shortage of Doctors
BROWSE RELATED TOPICS:
Medical Profession and Personnel