Practo is a neutral platform that aims to ensure a bias-free environment for doctors and patients alike. Therefore, giving and accepting feedback on the platform is governed by a stringent set of rules that doctors and patients must adhere to, in order to ensure continued fairness on the platform. While we do many things to ensure that only genuine feedback is published (you can read about these here), there are always some who try to take unfair advantage of the system. Fighting them is a continuous battle that we are committed to so that we can ensure a great healthcare experience for both, doctors and patients.
We see a number of cases where patients are impersonated for submission of feedback, often by the clinic staff. As per the IT act section 66C and 66D, this is classified as online identity theft and carries severe penalties including imprisonment up to 3 years and fine up to 1 Lakh INR. Our systems are designed to prevent misuse of the profile and protect medical practitioners, and their establishments and staff from such outcomes.
To do this, we have two levels of verification in place:
Level 1: Authenticity verification at collection source
These are measures that continuously monitor the source of feedback collection to verify its authenticity and prevent publishing if detected otherwise. Some of these include device checks and account verification procedures.
Level 2: Post-acceptance authenticity verification systems
In the rare event that despite highly sophisticated measures in Level 1, a non-authentic feedback gets published, our Level 2 system continuously monitors and uses real-time feedback from providers and patients to highlight such feedback.
1. Every feedback provided by a patient is visible in the doctor’s dashboard. If a doctor feels that the feedback is not from a patient who visited him, then he/she can simply contest the feedback and Practo will reach out to the patient for additional proof of visit to the doctor. In such cases, the feedback is unpublished until the patient is able to provide a valid proof. If we see several incidents like these from the same patient, then he/she is banned from submitting any feedback in future.
2. Similarly, we also notify the patient when his/her feedback gets published. If the patient contests this feedback we pull it down from the profile. If we see multiple such contestations for a particular provider, then the case is taken up on priority for deeper investigation.
a. Once this flag is raised, our authenticity detection engine gets into action and scans all the submitted feedback to match with known patterns of non-authentic feedback, including patterns of similarity in writing styles etc.
b. On completion of the scan, if the engine highlights unusual levels of an anomaly in the feedback then we unpublish all the feedback on the profile and send it for re-verification.
c. The re-verification is done by intimating the patients to re-confirm whether or not they had provided the feedback.These steps ensure that only genuine feedback makes it to the Practo platform and creates a fair system for all providers to collect and display only genuine feedback on their Practo Profile.
With these steps in place, we are able to ensure that our feedback system remains robust and trustworthy and continues to help millions of patients find great doctors on Practo.