About a week ago, I went to Yelp to check out a local doctor to find out what others thought of him and his practice. I was amazed to find a 4 out of 5 star rating and all these wonderful things people had to say about the doctor and his office. How could this be, I wondered, since I had just been a patient there and had a very unpleasant experience.
Aha, there is something Yelp calls a "filter" which takes a bit of finagling to get through and viola...up comes the very negative comments that virtually mirror the visit I had with this same doctor. Had I checked this site before choosing a doctor, and not been able to find this fairly well hidden "filter" I would have thought this was a great doc.
Caveat: Don't trust Yelp to give you the straight story on reviews when they hide the really pertinent information at their discretion. If they are going to allow reviews, then print them all!
Secondly, some sites actually do list the good, the bad and the ugly about the docs and others reviewed. The point is to be sure you get the big picture and never rely on just one or two review sites to give you the information you need. Check every one you can, especially professional sites. Check the local medical board if possible. Check hospital ratings too. With your health, you can never be too careful.
Finally, when it comes to the Better Business Bureau, as they say in New York "fuggettaboutit." They rate every business who pays them a fee and the businesses start off with an "A." That doesn't give you the warm fuzzies when a brand new business with no history has the same "A" as the business who has been around a few years. You do have to look at more than the letter rating but again, every A is not an A.