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Electronic word of mouth about medical services

  • Hinz, Vera
  • Drevs, Florian
  • Wehner, Jürgen
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    Electronic word of mouth (eWOM) about medical services gains growing popularity from the part of health care users, accompanied with a high reluctance of health care providers towards existing platforms, fearing unqualified, negative reviews driven by motives of vengeance. Purpose of this research is to shed light on the characteristics, content, and motives of eWOM about medical services. Using primary and secondary data of 822 reviews, this study shows that reviews about medical services are positive more often than negative, and that altruistic motives override egoistic motives. Furthermore, why a review is written significantly relates to the review's valence (positive, negative), degree of affectivity, and degree of differentiation. Motives and characteristics also affect the review's content, differentiated in four aspects (medical care, relationships, comfort, and processes). Hence this study counters the arguments of many health care providers and offers new insights in an underresearched field, providing implications for both management and future research.

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    File URL: http://econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/65671/1/728789248.pdf
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    Paper provided by Hamburg Center for Health Economics (hche), University of Hamburg in its series hche Research Papers with number 2012/05.

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    Date of creation: 2012
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    Handle: RePEc:zbw:hcherp:201205
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.hche.eu/Email:


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    1. Leisen, Birgit & Hyman, Michael R., 2004. "Antecedents and consequences of trust in a service provider: The case of primary care physicians," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 57(9), pages 990-999, September.
    2. Choi, Kui-Son & Cho, Woo-Hyun & Lee, Sunhee & Lee, Hanjoon & Kim, Chankon, 2004. "The relationships among quality, value, satisfaction and behavioral intention in health care provider choice: A South Korean study," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 57(8), pages 913-921, August.
    3. Gruca, Thomas S. & Wakefield, Douglas S., 2004. "Hospital web sites: Promise and progress," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 57(9), pages 1021-1025, September.
    4. Zeelenberg, M. & Pieters, R., 2004. "Beyond valence in customer dissatisfaction : A review and new findings on behavioral responses to regret and disappointment in failed services," Other publications TiSEM 7bfb4aa9-cba7-4786-850d-1, School of Economics and Management.
    5. Zeelenberg, Marcel & Pieters, Rik, 2004. "Beyond valence in customer dissatisfaction: A review and new findings on behavioral responses to regret and disappointment in failed services," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 57(4), pages 445-455, April.
    6. repec:ner:tilbur:urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-304446 is not listed on IDEAS
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