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Fall Healthcare Conferences: So Many Options, So Little Time

Posted on October 10, 2013 I Written By

As Social Marketing Director at Billian, Jennifer Dennard is responsible for the continuing development and implementation of the company's social media strategies for Billian's HealthDATA and Porter Research. She is a regular contributor to a number of healthcare blogs and currently manages social marketing channels for the Health IT Leadership Summit and Technology Association of Georgia’s Health Society. You can find her on Twitter @JennDennard.

Fall conference season is in full swing, and while I didn’t have the opportunity to attend StrataRx or Health 2.0, I was able to follow along via very active tweet streams. I have had the opportunity to attend several regional events, and have several more lined up in the coming weeks. Here is a brief list of those, along with reflections and expectations.

mHealth: Engaging the Masses and Making It Work for Your Bottom Line
This evening event, put on by the Technology Association of Georgia’s Health Society, featured panelists from Kaiser, Cigna, Intel and Accelarad. The back and forth between the four different stakeholders illuminated a number of challenges healthcare as an industry is facing when it comes to broad adoption and regular utilization of mobile health tools. They all want to fit those tools into a business model that not only helps to improve outcomes, but also generates revenue at the same time. (On a side note, I found it very interesting to learn from the Cigna panelist that Aetna is the payer with the best mobile health tools.)

Georgia HIMSS Trade Faire
This daylong event offered a variety of sessions, keynote speakers and an exhibit hall, all situated in Building C of the sprawling Georgia World Congress Center. My favorite session by far was “Georgia Leads the Way: Patient Engagement in Cancer Care.” Stakeholders from Georgia Tech, Cancer Navigators, and the Georgia Department of Community Health were on hand to explain how the ONC-funded program is helping providers engage their patients as full partners, and to show how those patients can actively participate in managing their cancer through the use of mobile technology. It was encouraging to me to know that programs like this are available to people that live north of metro Atlanta.

My day was topped off by a lovely reception hosted by the Health Forward Alliance at the Metro Atlanta Chamber’s scenic rooftop. The alliance is looking to bring innovative thought leaders to the healthcare community to inspire new ways of thinking. It’s a great idea, as I think sometimes healthcare folks get stuck in their healthcare bubble, rarely exposing themselves to fresh perspectives from different industries.

AHIMA
October 27 – 30 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta
I’m excited that AHIMA is in Atlanta this year. No flight delays or strange smelling hotel rooms for me this year. Being that I do technically live in North Georgia, I’ll unfortunately have quite a commute. In my mind, that is all the more reason to soak up as much of the conference as possible. I haven’t combed through the educational session descriptions yet, but I do know I’m looking forward to hearing on Tuesday about connected health from Travis Good, MD, who writes a terrific blog on the topic; and to the Henry Winkler/Marlee Matlin téte a téte Wednesday morning. I had no idea they had such an inspiring story to tell.

Health IT Leadership Summit
November 12, the Fox Theatre, Atlanta
Full disclosure: I’m part of the marketing committee for this event. Nevertheless, I am excited about hearing from WebMD founder and current Sharecare CEO Jeff Arnold. Sharecare is doing some interesting things in the consumer engagement space, effectively trying to bring it to the masses. I hope Arnold will touch on why he thought the time was right to get such an endeavor started, and how he keeps visitors coming back again and again. That seems to be a main sticking point with most engagement tools I read about these days.

I’d love to know of any events coming up I should make a point to attend, as well as your thoughts on any that I mentioned above.

Digital Signage Expo in Las Vegas – Healthcare Learning from Other Industries

Posted on January 22, 2013 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

In my recent post about the Presidential Inauguration and Healthcare, I commented how many times healthcare stays in its closed environment and doesn’t learn from the other industries. This is true in many parts of healthcare IT and that needs to change. While healthcare certainly has special needs and requirements, the attitude that healthcare can’t learn from other industries needs to be corrected if we want to improve healthcare as we know it.

I saw an example of this when I watched this video that talks about the Digital Signage Expo in Las Vegas. Look at some of the amazing digital signage technology they show in this video and think about how often you’ve seen them in healthcare.

The sad thing is that many people in healthcare have ignored these technologies with the excuse that they’ve been distracted by ICD-10, meaningful use, ACOs, etc. Certainly each of these items are big priorities, but many of the digital signage technologies mentioned in the video above could help a hospital or healthcare organization achieve their goals.

For example, one of the crazy ACO changes we’re going to see has to do with patient satisfaction. Yes, I know it’s crazy, but it’s coming. The more satisfied your patients are, the more you’re going to get paid. Could a virtual assistant video wall help to increase patient satisfaction? Could an interactive video wall that recognizes gestures provide the wow factor for the patients that visit your hospital? I think it could, but too many people in healthcare don’t get out of their office to learn about these technologies.

Near the end of the above video they say, “mobile is the action, the signage is the call to action.”

Think about this concept in healthcare. Imagine a video wall in your hospital that takes your hospital’s healthcare data and illustrates the challenges and costs of obesity to your health system. Then, alongside that digital illustration you have a call for patients to sign up for your weight loss program. Of course, this same concept could be applied to all of the healthcare initiatives your hospital is working on already.

There are a number of ways digital signage can be used in healthcare. Take a look at Leveraging Digital Signage in Hospitals for a number of examples and a post by Shahid Shah about using digital signage to create real service improvement. It would just be unfortunate if those in healthcare were “too busy” to take advantage of the technology options that are available out there.

I hope that many in healthcare will take part in the Digital Signage Expo (click image below for more details) so we can get some good cross pollination of ideas from what’s being done in other industries in healthcare.

At the recent Consumer Electronics Show (CES), I would walk up to a booth that I thought had no relation to healthcare. They’d see the words healthcare on my badge and almost every single time they’d say, “Oh, you’re in healthcare, this is how our technology applies to healthcare.” I expect the same thing will be true at the Digital Signage Expo.

I look forward to the day when healthcare is filled with amazing digital signage that engages patients and healthcare staff well beyond a static ad on the wall. The beautiful part is that the technology is already there. We just need to apply what’s being done in other industries to healthcare.

Some Twitter Thoughts from the Connected Health Symposium

Posted on October 20, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

I’m busy today and tomorrow at the Connected Health Symposium in Boston. It’s been a pretty interesting event. Instead of generally regurgitating facts, they’re bringing up topics which are new and interesting. You can follow my @techguy Twitter account for more updates or the #chs11 hashtag to read all the coverage.

Here’s a few of my tweets from today to give you an idea of some interesting thoughts from the event.