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J Health Care Finance. 2003 Fall;30(1):65-71.

Health care consumer reports: an evaluation of consumer perspectives.

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University of Missouri-Columbia, USA.


There has been a proliferation of health care consumer reports, also known as "consumer guides," "report cards," and "performance reports," which are designed to assist consumers in making more informed health care decisions. While there is evidence that providers use such reports to identify and make changes in practice, thus improving the quality of care, there is little empirical evidence on how consumer guides/report cards are used by consumers. This study fills that gap by surveying 925 patients as they wait for ambulatory care in several clinics in a midwestern city. Findings indicate that consumers are selective in their use of these reports and quickly identify those sections of the report of most interest to them. Report developers should take precautions to ensure such reports are viewed as credible sources of health care information.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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