Why your hospital's Medicare data just went live on Yelp

Partnering with journalism not-for-profit ProPublica on the initiative

Yelp, the popular website that publishes crowd-sourced reviews about local businesses, announced Wednesday it is adding data on thousands of health care providers to its listings, Lena Sun reports for the Washington Post's "To Your Health."

Four hidden ways patient experience may be costing you

The data are compiled by CMS—including information available on its Hospital Compare website—and independent research by the investigative journalism not-for-profit ProPublica. The data cover 4,600 hospitals, 15,000 nursing homes, and 6,300 dialysis clinics, and will be updated quarterly.

  • Hospital pages now include Medicare data on a facility's average ED wait time and patient-reported information on physician communication and the noise level in patient rooms;
  • Dialysis center pages now include data on how often a facility's patients are readmitted to the hospital and the center's patient survival rate; and
  • Nursing home pages now include information on suspensions of payments because of substandard performance and fines paid by the provider for serious deficiencies.


Individuals navigating the site can scroll over an information icon to receive additional information on the data. According to Yelp, ProPublica helped it to select which information to include on its review pages and how to explain the data to consumers.

The new information will supplement, not replace, Yelp's signature star ratings based on consumer reviews.

Luther Lowe, Yelp's vice president for policy, says partnering with ProPublica had clear benefits for Yelp users. "We're taking data that otherwise might live in some government PDF that's hard to find and we're putting it in a context where it makes sense for people who may be in the middle of making critical decisions."

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Scott Klein, ProPublica's assistant managing editor, says ProPublica will gain bulk access to all of Yelp's health care-related reviews as part of the partnership. No personal information will be shared with ProPublica as part of the arrangement, other than what is already available on Yelp's website (Lena Sun, "To Your Health," Washington Post, 8/5; Yelp blog, 8/5).

How we can help improve patient experiences

The Advisory Board offers myriad resources to help you improve patient experience at your facility, including:

  • Ensure excellence for every patient, every day. Creating a positive patient experience builds loyalty—and loyalty could mean nearly $3 million of revenue potential for a typical hospital. Our technology helps you improve the patient experience by gathering satisfaction data in real time while automatically disseminating service recovery requests and providing intelligent dashboards.

  • Why so many patient experience efforts fail. We know the causes of failure for patient experience initiatives, and we have a data-driven, closed-loop approach that has led to more than 40% increases in HCAHPS rankings in patient experience.

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