A New Zealand first online platform that enables consumers to search, rate, review and compare local healthcare providers is launching today to help Kiwi consumers make more informed choices about their healthcare provider.
Whitecoat, supported by leading health insurer, nib, features almost 10,000 healthcare providers across a range of health disciplines throughout New Zealand - including specialists, GPs, dentists and physiotherapists.
The free and publicly available website is designed to improve consumer access via an online platform that through information, connectivity and reach, creates transparency between providers and patients, empowering Kiwis to make better decisions when it comes to their health.
Particularly helpful for those who have moved to a new area or need specialist treatment for the first time, the platform helps patients to locate trusted healthcare providers online, based on location and consumer reviews.
High profile GP and former New Zealander of the Year, Dr Lance O’Sullivan, is supportive of the platform and what it offers to both consumers and healthcare providers.
“When you’re looking for a healthcare provider, you want to be sure you’re seeing someone that will give you the best possible care. With the introduction of Whitecoat, there is now an easy way for people to compare healthcare providers in their local area and read reviews from other patients. It provides a platform for feedback and keeps health professionals accountable,” Dr O’Sullivan said.
Matthew Donnellan, CEO of Whitecoat, said the digital platform also presents a new way of connecting Kiwi consumers and providers who increasingly rely on the web and social media for information and consumer referrals.
“Historically, the healthcare market has lacked information, transparency and comparability. Consumers generally have had very limited access or ability to comprehend information relevant to their health and treatment, and consequently, many have experienced over-servicing, wide cost variation and avoidable hospitalisations.
“Whitecoat looks to change that, by empowering patients to review their experience with healthcare professionals, and concurrently giving providers an opportunity to connect with patients, receive feedback and reply to reviews while also increasing their online presence,” he said.
Whitecoat have worked closely with providers and industry associations to build support for the website and its functionality. The company have also invested heavily to ensure that the privacy of individual providers and members is protected, and all reviews are strictly moderated and remain anonymous.
Dubbed the “TripAdvisor” of healthcare in Australia where it was originally developed, the platform across the Tasman has added capabilities allowing bookings and payments to be made through the platform – features that will be made available in New Zealand in the future.
Rob Hennin, CEO of nib New Zealand, said they are proud to support the launch of the platform locally.
“It is a welcomed addition to our healthcare industry and provides a unique offering that we think will be widely used by consumers and providers alike.
“nib is committed to bringing innovation to the market and passionate about meeting the changing needs of consumers by supporting new products and services like Whitecoat,” he concludes.
For more information and to leave a review please visit: whitecoat.co.nz
Initially launched by nib in Australia in 2013 and expanded in 2017 through a joint venture with Bupa and HBF, Whitecoat has fast become Australia’s premier online healthcare platform enabling everyday Australians to make the best choices when it comes to their health. In Australia, it is currently home to over 220,000 trusted practitioner listings and is used by tens of thousands of Aussies each week.
Our vision is to improve the choice, transparency and wellbeing of the healthcare of our fellow New Zealanders by creating transparency within the healthcare industry, helping to provide them with the right information when they need it to make more informed decisions when it comes to their health.
26 Jul 2018