Most patients want doctors who are tech-savvy and friendly: poll

What up, doc?

OnePoll and ModMed teamed up to poll 2,000 American adults — 1,500 with health insurance, and 500 without — on what they look for in finding a good doctor.

Before attending an appointment with a new physician, 38% of respondents said they browse the doctor’s office website, and 74% rely on online reviews when selecting a new caretaker. 

After the appointment, 59% of respondents indicated they are more likely to pay a bill faster if given an online option, and 44% prefer to access test results either online or through a portal. 

People also keep “mental notes” on how engaging or personable their doctor is (67%), with 39% saying they’ve switched doctor’s offices if the staff is not friendly.

While two in five respondents said a change in insurance takes them to a new doctor, 35% leave to find a “better fit.”

Almost four in five respondents (79%) emphasized the importance of timelessness and wait time.

Overall, 90% of people said it’s important that their doctor used the latest technology — so much so that 61% of respondents said that the ability to schedule appointments online is a deciding factor on whether they stay or leave the office for a new one.

They also want Telehealth to remain an option in a post-pandemic world. While 67% of respondents feel that routine, virtual doctor visits are not as effective as in-person, 22% believe that virtual visits are useful for urgent or time-sensitive visits.

But the average patient will give their doctor four chances before they look elsewhere.

“The survey demonstrates that patients want to be able to easily schedule appointments and communicate with their provider before, during and after an appointment, a trend that was emerging before the pandemic, but which has sped up as a result,” said Daniel Cane, CEO and co-founder of ModMed.

“Patients are increasingly interested in taking a more prominent role in managing their healthcare. From scheduling their own appointments to accessing medical records to making payments from their phone, the appetite for patient participation is growing,” Cane continued.

Additionally, 36% of those surveyed prefer that follow-up communication be from a phone call, while 23% prefer an email.

When it comes to requesting prescription refills, 46% prefer it to happen through an app, and two in five people would rather send messages to their doctor virtually.

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