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HOW TO FIND INFORMATION ABOUT 

PHYSICIANS AND OTHER HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS 

Qualitative information on physicians and other healthcare providers is often difficult, if not impossible, to locate. There isn't one source for comparative information, in fact, there is little comparative information on physicians and healthcare providers. Many states have easily accesssible online information about physicians. These physician profiles include the physician's medical training and experience, information about accreditation and honors, malpractice suits, and any disciplinary actions taken against the physician.

The following are some Internet resources that can be helpful to you in choosing a physician or other health care service.  While these sources will not tell you who is “the best”, they can provide information to help you make a more informed decision.

Physicians and Other Health Care Professionals

Connecticut Physician Profiles

The Connecticut Department of Public Health publishes physician profiles that include the physician's biographical and educational background information, board certifications, medical malpractice history, and hospital disciplinary actions in all states. Select "Physician Profile."

Connecticut Bureau of Regulatory Services

Connecticut Bureau of Regulatory Services quarterly online reports of disciplinary actions against health practitioners in Connecticut. Select "Regulatory Action Reports". These reports include physicians, nurses, physical therapists, dentists, nursing homes, and other healthcare providers and facilities.  The reports often contain more details about the disciplinary actions against physicians than the "Physician Profiles". Requires Adobe Acrobat Reader on computer for online display - free download at the  Adobe site . Reports can be viewed and downloaded. It is best to look for the information by date than to use the search feature by name because the search results are not always reliable.

Connecticut Licensing Info Center

Allows users to verify the license status of Connecticut health professionals by typing the name of a doctor, dentist or other health care provider in the License Verification area of the web page. For physician license verification, Select "Physicians & Surgeons" as License Type. Includes Connecticut Department of Public Health Licensing Requirements for health-related professions--acupuncturists, dentists, physicians, etc.

AMA Physician Select/On-Line Doctor Finder

The American Medical Association’s Internet directory, listing credentials of M.D.s and osteopathic physicians. Searchable by physician name or specialty. Not all physicians and osteopaths are members of the AMA although those who are not are listed as a "non-member". Doctor Finder will also tell you if a physician is board certified in his or her specialty. Specialists, such as dermatologists, may join a professional organization concerned with their specialty - in this case the American Academy of Dermatology. For a listing of professional medical societies and academies, see http://www.ama-assn.org/ama/pub/category/7634.html .

Federation of State Medical Boards

Source to locate information about physicians in other states. Select "Public Services" and then "Directory of State Medical Boards" for a state by state list of medical boards. Some states have physician profiles similar to Connecticut profiles and some states only list doctors who have been disciplined. There are also links to osteopathic physician sites when available. The FSMB will send you a disciplinary history of a physician for a $9.95 fee payable online by credit card or by check or money order by mail. Select "DocInfo" under "Public Services".

American Board of Medical Specialties

Search for information on board-certified physicians online. Explains the criteria for certification. One area verifies board certification when searched by physician’s name. A second area of the website allows searching by specialty or geographic area. (Select "Is your doctor certified?" tab on the left). You must register to use the database and there is a limit of five searches in a 24 hour period.

PubMed (Medline)

Search MEDLINE, the database of medical journal articles produced by the National Library of Medicine, by author’s name to find citations and abstracts summarizing medical journal articles that are written by specific physicians. This is one way of finding information on a physician's research background and specialty.

Hospitals and Nursing Homes

 Health Care Quality - Connecticut

This site has comparisons of adult general acute-care hospitals in Connecticut for the period January 2005 through December 2005 on several measures, including quality of care for patients with a heart attack, heart failure or pneumonia. License verification for Connecticut healthcare facilities is available on the website. Select "General Hospital".

Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations

The Quality Check feature supplies details on individual hospital performance ratings from JCAHO’s accreditation reports. View Performance Reports and compare institutions’ ratings.

Your Guide to Choosing Quality Health Care

Online workbook describes quality health care and guides the user through the decision making process involved in selecting a health care provider.

Nursing Home Compare

Provides detailed information about the performance of every Medicare and Medicaid certified nursing home in the country. Searchable by state. Includes a Guide to Choosing a Nursing Home under the "Resources" tab.

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