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New Scoreboard Measures Patient-Perceived Quality of Care in US hospitals Using Twitter

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The Boston Globe writes of a new scoreboard for US medical centers with the best patient care,  The rankings (CrowdClinical’s Top 10 Hospital Rankings) are derived not from official surveys or outcomes but from the sentiment of the masses, based on a real-time watch of what patients and their families are saying about the institutions on Twitter. collects, aggregates and summarizes this information for a public audience in real-time.  Research, published in BMJ, found that  tweets describing patient experiences in hospitals cover a wide range of patient care aspects and can be identified using automated approaches. Moreover, hospital sentiment derived from these tweets correlates to established outcome metrics (e.g., 30-day hospital readmission rates). The research suggests that this data stream represents a potentially untapped indicator of quality, and may be valuable to patients, researchers, policy makers and hospital administrators.

CrowdClinical uses a combination of supervised machine learning, natural language processing and manual curation to systematically identify and rate (e.g., determine sentiment) tweets discussing a patient’s experience receiving health care. CrowdClinical began monitoring tweets on February 22, 2015 and continues to track patient experience discussion in real-time.

CrowdClinical is a site administered by HealthMap, a team of researchers, epidemiologists and software developers at Boston Children’s Hospital founded in 2006, that utilizie online informal sources for disease outbreak monitoring and real-time surveillance of emerging public health threats.

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