It may not quite rival Medicare's Hospital Compare for crunching data, but Facebook seems to have another measure for healthcare quality.
A recent study says that a hospital's number of Facebook “likes” may actually be a good indicator of clinical quality and patient satisfaction.
Published in the American Journal of Medical Quality, the study analyzed the number of Facebook “likes” for 40 hospitals in the New York City area. Using Hospital Compare data, researchers also examined hospitals' 30-day mortality rates from heart attack and performance on a satisfaction measure that gauges whether patients would recommend the hospital where they were treated.
The authors found a statistically strong relationship between hospitals' numbers of “likes” and their 30-day mortality rates, with each percentage point drop in mortality corresponding with nearly 93 more Facebook “likes.”
They also found a similar relationship—albeit not as strong—between a hospital's tally of “likes” and patients' willingness to recommend the facility to others.