A study shows that 42% of adults in the U.S. with a doctor spend more time researching their gadget purchases than they did looking for their primary health care physician. The number was even larger for respondents over the age of 55, but not really a surprise given the number of restrictions surrounding health care providers.
First off there are many more gadgets available for comparison than primary care doctors for many Americans. While you can hop online and start looking for gadgets at Amazon, Best Buy, eBay and a hundred other locations when you go looking for a new primary physician you need to find one within a reasonable distance from your home and one that is also covered by your health insurance plan which severely limits the scope.
Assuming you did want to do additional research for a healthcare provider, doing so online isn’t nearly as easy as looking up gadget reviews. Some doctors have included “gag orders” in new patient signup forms to prevent online reviews of the doctor. Thankfully we haven’t come across a new gadget license agreement that prohibits bad online reviews.
Further complicating the problem is the fact that most American consumers will gladly post their thoughts on the latest iPod anywhere, but when it comes to talking about medical information we are pretty quiet outside of our close circle of friends.
Other findings from the study backup the issues we’ve stated about finding information about healthcare online including;
- Two-thirds (67%) of adults wish they could find more comprehensive information about doctors online.
- Almost three-quarters (73%) of people under 35 agreed that they wanted to be able to find more comprehensive information about doctors online.
- More than half (51%) of adults agree it is hard to find information on a doctor.
- About seven in ten (71%) adults wish doctors would share information about their medical background and expertise online.
- Almost four in five (78%) of those adults aged 18 to 34 said they wish doctors would share more information online.