U.S. adults with a primary care physician spend more time researching the latest electronic gadget or a gift for a friend than they do choosing a doctor, according to a new study released by Insider Pages and conducted by Harris Interactive.
At the same time, the majority of U.S. adults with a primary care physician wish they could find more comprehensive information about their doctors online.
While the online ratings and reviews category has seen strong growth in recent years across a number of categories such as consumer electronics, healthcare has lagged behind, and consumers have more or less settled for what they can find out about their doctors from health insurance websites. The end result is that many consumers don't favor one source of information to evaluate potential doctors outside of their insurance companies' websites.
More than two-thirds (67%) of adults wish they could find more comprehensive information about doctors online and nearly three-quarters (73%) of people under 35 feel the same way.
Other highlights from the Insider Pages study include:
*Over two-fifths (42%) of adults agree they spent more time researching the latest electronic gadget than their primary care doctor.
*Nearly half (47%) of adults with a PCP agree they chose their doctor primarily on location and not information about the physician's expertise, malpractice record or online reviews.
*For one quarter (25%) of adults with a PCP, word of mouth is the most important factor aside from their insurance plan when deciding if a primary care provider was right for them.