Avvo, the Seattle-based vertical site that launched its lawyer ratings service in 2007, has now added doctor ratings, using the proceeds, in part, from a $10 million raise it did in March. In launching a doctors site, it goes head to head against Angie’s List, Everydayhealth.com and dozens of others that view doctor ratings and other medical practitioner information as uncharted territory.
Avvo Doctors, which works off a common platform with Lawyers, is launching with numerical ratings and profiles for 800,000 doctors in all 50 states, or 90 percent of all U.S. doctors. It also includes medical misconduct information for roughly 50 percent of doctors — a percentage it hopes to boost to 90 percent by Q1 2011 as state medical boards improve their reporting systems.
The site include 400 questions and answers from certified doctors. It expects the Q&A forum to grow at a faster rate than its legal counterpart, which receives more than 50,000 contributions per month.
Avvo has also put together a medical advisory board that includes the former president of the American Medical Association, a chief surgeon at the University of Washington, and two doctors who run their own elective clinics on the East and West coasts.
“In the online marketing world, doctors look a lot like lawyers did before Avvo arrived,” notes CEO and Founder Mark Britton on the company blog. “Consumers are lost when trying to find a doctor, let alone trying to understand the doctor’s background and reputation. Few doctors understand the art or science of marketing – especially online marketing. Doctors still spend over $500 million dollars annually in the Yellow Pages (yes, the yellow pages).”