Since my first HIMSS conference in 2010, my consistent theme has centered on how health IT will get more interesting as it matures. My rationale: the types of problems we can solve become more complex and impactful as more core data become accessible for analysis.
That’s the focus on one of my articles in the HIMSS16 newsfeed, Identifying Signs of Maturity in Health IT at HIMSS16. One sign of maturity includes an increasing volume of partnerships and merger & acquisition (M&A) activity, especially among established firms. I’d like to thank IBM for announcing its acquisition of Truven Health Analytics prior to HIMSS16; that relieves me of relaying that information during the conference! At $2.6 billion, I expect this acquisition to be one of the biggest announced for the health IT and analytics community for the whole quarter and I look forward to learning more about the combined entity next week.
Another sign of maturity can be found in terminology changes. I’ve already seen indications that some specific categories in health IT will be rolled up into larger categories. For instance, the distinction between the EMR and the EHR categories is blurring. Over time, more amorphous categories such as clinical decision support will likely get subsumed into larger categories like clinical intelligence. And, before long, we won’t need a dedicated area to showcase interoperability at HIMSS; instead, we will be able to talk about all the things we can do because of the underlying interoperability between previously distinct systems.
Moving From Meaningful to Valuable Uses of Health Data
With the foundation for ‘meaningful use’ of basic EHR data nearly complete, we can move forward to developing analytic solutions that depend on a solid foundation of process and outcomes measures. We’re making progress understanding the relationships between outcomes and interventions, but in this segment, we’re at very early stages of maturity. However, the shift to a value-based payment system will accelerate developments in outcomes measurement and analysis.
Where to Find Me at HIMSS16
My schedule for HIMSS16 is a mish-mash of 1:1 meetings, press briefings, receptions, keynotes and education session with a few minutes here & there left open to wander the exhibit hall.
A few notable sessions & events where I hope to run into friends and colleagues follow:
- Opening keynotes on Monday, March 1 at 5 pm.
- HIStalkapalooza Monday evening
- #HealthITChicks meetup, Tuesday, March 1 at 10 am, HIMSS Spot
- #TheWalkingGallery meetup, Tuesday, March 1 at 1:30 pm, Xerox booth #8005
- New England HIMSS reception, Tuesday, March 1 at 4:30 pm, Elsevier booth #3039
- Social Media Ambassador meetup, Wednesday, March 2, HIMSS Spot
I look forward to a super-charged week at HIMSS16. I’ll try to live up to the new “Health IT Maturity Champion” moniker that HIMSS Media has coined for me (or maybe not!).
 The HIMSS Analytics team tipped me off to some terminology changes that are likely to occur soon. See my article on HIMSS Analytics LOGIC here: http://www.himssconference.org/updates/himss-analytics-logic-health-it-market-intelligence-value-based-world
Note, the time for the SMA meetup is 3:00 - 3:45 pm on Wednesday at the HIMSS Spot: http://www.himssconference.org/session/himss16-trendspotting-social-media-ambassadors