"Top Docs" Litigation Unfortunate

Virtua Health and Cooper Health System, competitors in South Jersey, are going to court over claims made about having the most "top docs."  

How sad. Because everyone loses.
Four years ago, I wrote an article that appeared in Healthcare Marketing Report entitled "Healthcare Quality Ratings: Where Do They Fit In Your Marketing Efforts." I also spoke at several universities on the subject. I can't help but offer the following excerpts:
"In our sound-bite-oriented, everybody-loves-a-winner culture, healthcare ratings can be a bit like the standings for baseball or football. Even if you're not a fan, you like to see your home team near the top. ...Much like sports, it really is about winning: making the list and being the best."
"Depending on the level of competition, health systems tend to line up on one side of the ratings or the other. They either promote them proactively to build market share or apply them defensively to protect it."
"In my opinion, the promotion of healthcare quality ratings is multiplying far more rapidly than consumers' ability to understand their true meaning and value. By jumping into the ratings game too quickly or too often, marketers risk jading their audiences and diluting the power of their messages. Ratings are an asset. Consider their use wisely."
The article also featured a worksheet to help marketers assess ten factors to help them make effective decisions about promoting quality ratings in their marketing communications. Please contact me if you would like one.
The current litigation is so unfortunate. Two organizations give themselves black eyes. Consumers become even more cynical or indifferent. Trust in our already beleaguered healthcare system continues to erode.
—Tom DeSanto
Image: i116photobucket.com.../kipese/winner-win.jpg

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