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Online rating site expands doctor list

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted Dec. 20, 2010

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Consumers' Checkbook's website now will include ratings of 930 Manhattan physicians, including ob-gyns, cardiologists, gastroenterologists, orthopedists and primary care doctors.

Ratings are based on patient surveys and were produced with help from Aetna, UnitedHealth Group subsidiary Oxford Health and Cigna, and are sponsored in part by the Northeast Business Group on Health.

Doctors are scored based on patient ratings of how well they listen and explain things, how available they are, and how helpful and courteous their staff is, among other criteria.

Consumers' Checkbook also rates consumer services such as plumbers and auto mechanics. It launched its physician ratings site in July 2009, beginning with several markets.

In 2007, Consumers' Checkbook sued for access to see reports on the performance of individual doctors based on Medicare claims. A federal appeals court blocked the group from accessing those records in a January 2009 ruling.

Note: This item originally appeared at http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2010/12/20/bibf1220.htm.

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