Ed Koch, a former mayor of New York City, famously stood on street corners and rode the subways to ask his constituents how they thought he was doing at his job.
Having recently traveled with the aid of a variety of lodging and travel apps, I have been bombarded with a plethora of similar requests for feedback. This made me think about my own online ratings. For full transparency, here are my own recent (imaginary) evaluations.
A.N. ***** What a truly fantastic doctor. Great education, but skill is not just made by the many distinguished diplomas hanging on the wall. Dr. N. brings a whole new level to the patient-physician relationship. He is knowledgeable and caring and a great communicator. Anyone would be happy to have him take care of them. God bless him.
J.N. responds: Thanks very much for your review … Mom.
K.L.** Cold hands, colder stethoscope.
J.N. responds: Well, it is Minnesota.
G.Q. **** I could not understand one thing he told me, but he sure dressed sharp!
J.N. responds: Better to look good than be good. Form over function, style over substance.
Q.Q. ***** J.N. came into my room and explained my cancer diagnosis. He sat by my bedside and held my hand. He explained my prognosis and treatment options. He was so caring. Sadly, he was in the wrong room, and I was not even his patient! But I still like him.
J.N. responds: Whoops!
N.W. ***** What a great job you did taking care of my child. I'd give you 6 stars if I could. I'll tell everyone what a fine physician you are, even though you are so young.
J.N. responds: Thanks so much. Even though I am an aged geriatrician!
A.R. ***** Your intern, resident, and medical students did a great job taking care of me! Great communication. I never really saw you but I'm sure you did something.
J.N. responds: Thanks, A.R. I was there, the bald guy in the back of the crowd looking at his phone.
E.N. * You are not a good driver. You putt-putt along and make everyone in the vehicle nauseated. Maybe you should not drive.
J.N. responds: Bringing down my star rating is not going to get you a car. Now get off the computer and go to bed.
B.O.T. ***** You can make millions working from home. Just click here! doctorphishing.spam.net
J.N. responds: Sounds great, let me just sign on to my work account to get started!
O.K. **** You did an OK job.
J.N. responds: Right back at ya—you were an OK patient.
Thanks for reading. I'd appreciate a five-star rating on this column.