Doctor Recommendation Based on an Intuitionistic Normal Cloud Model Considering Patient Preferences

  • Yan Yang
  • Junhua HuEmail author
  • Yongmei Liu
  • Xiaohong Chen


Chinese medical websites help patients search for satisfactory doctors via the Internet regardless of time and location. Existing website systems recommend the same doctors for all patients using a global ranking but disregard patient preferences and online reviews. Additionally, these models do not consider the effects of interdependencies among criteria when making recommendations. We propose a systematic decision support model to improve such recommendations using intuitionistic fuzzy sets (IFSs) with the Bonferroni mean (BM) to address interdependencies. Our system accommodates patient preferences using multiple intuitionistic normal clouds (INCs). A case study using production data from, the largest such website, shows that our model improves the diversity and coverage of doctor recommendations while considering patient preferences when compared to the existing approach. This pattern continued with testing using data from several other Chinese healthcare sites. Our proposal is thus both applicable and readily implemented to improve the recommendations of these websites.


Decision support model Intuitionistic normal cloud model Medical websites Doctor recommendation 


Funding Information

This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant numbers 71871229, 71771219) and the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities of Central South University (2018zzts092).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was not required as no human or animals were involved.

Human and Animal Rights

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yan Yang
    • 1
  • Junhua Hu
    • 1
    Email author
  • Yongmei Liu
    • 1
  • Xiaohong Chen
    • 1
  1. 1.School of BusinessCentral South UniversityChangshaChina

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