Yelp may be best known for its restaurant and nightclub reviews, but the site’s seeds were actually planted when CEO Jeremy Stoppelman had trouble finding recommendations for a local doctor. Health providers now account for a rapidly growing six percent of Yelp’s reviewed businesses. Thanks to a new partnership with ProPublica, the site’s star ratings system is being supplemented with objective healthcare data.
ProPublica is helping Yelp to identify health metrics – including average wait times for emergency rooms and fines paid by nursing homes – to add to the site’s provider pages. They are now available on nearly 26,000 pages, and more are coming soon. As part of the partnership, Yelp also is allowing ProPublica unprecedented access to its 1.3 million health reviews to help with our reporting.
This week, Stoppelman joins ProPublica senior reporter Charles Ornstein to discuss the debate over online reviews of health providers and Yelp’s increasing use of data across the site.
Highlights from their conversation:
For more on ProPublica’s partnership with Yelp, read Ornstein’s story, "‘Stay Far, Far Away’ and Other Things Gleaned From Yelp Health Reviews.”