HIMSS Innovation Center opens its doors

Cleveland plays host to new leading-edge healthcare center amid speeches, ribbon cutting, tours, demos and more
By Bernie Monegain
05:17 AM
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HIMSS Innovation Center

The HIMSS Innovation Center opens today in Cleveland, a city, known around the world for the Cleveland Clinic and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and one that prides itself on being a city of firsts.

HIMSS leaders who describe their 50,000-plus member organization of health IT professionals as "cause-based," make no bones about their intent to shake things up in healthcare – more than a little bit.

They pepper their conversations with words and phrases like disruption, interoperability and health information exchange. Transformation of healthcare through information technology has served as HIMSS’ mantra since the beginning.

So today, when HIMSS WorldWide President and CEO H. Stephen Lieber takes to the stage to make remarks at the ribbon-cutting event, slated to begin at 2 p.m., he might have a thing or two to say about interoperability, innovation and a vision for the future of healthcare here and around the world.

The intent of the gleaming new center is to engage people and give them more opportunities to help transform healthcare, he told Healthcare IT News this past February.

"We’ve got to reach more than IT folks," Lieber said. "Getting to others – that is our strategic challenge." By also drawing in department heads, medical specialty organizations, healthcare management groups and others, HIMSS "has a better chance of effecting change, of "broadening the discussion, adding more people to the conversation."

[See also: HIMSS Innovation Center slated for October opening in Cleveland.]

The 30,000 square-foot HIMSS Innovation Center, is part of the Global Center for Health Innovation, in downtown Cleveland. It includes a Health IT Simulation Center testing health IT interoperability, and a Healthcare Technology Showcase demonstrating the value of IT and information exchange to patient care, clinician and patient satisfaction, population health, and the bottom line.

The HIMSS Innovation Center occupies the fourth floor of the Global Center for Health Innovation. The global center has been 10 years in the making, and it is expected to be a boon to Cleveland, which has experienced economic struggles in recent years. Once called the Medical Mart, sometimes Med Mart, that moniker is apparently fading as the new, more aspiring, name takes hold.

"The HIMSS Innovation Center is a milestone in our mission to improve health through the best use of information technology," Carla Smith, HIMSS executive vice president, said in a news release.

As Smith describes it, the center will host virtual and in-person experiences, which will help give clinicians, health professionals, consumers, and policymakers an understanding of how the secure and appropriate exchange of health information improves the outcomes, safety, cost-effectiveness and access to care.

"It is an interactive setting where, with our collaborators, HIMSS enables testing of interoperable IT products, and provides knowledge and firsthand demonstrations of the value of health IT for patient care." Smith added.

What visitors will see
Visitors to the HIMSS Innovation Center can take part in an interactive learning experience where they can:

  • Learn about innovative IT products and services that can positively transform the quality, safety, cost-effectiveness, and access to care
  • Simulate clinical scenarios in which health information is securely and appropriately shared and how health information technologies can improve patient care
  • Participate in state-of-the art use of IT in health and healthcare practices.

The Health IT Simulation Center is a fully operational, multi-care environment populated with simulated patient demographic, clinical and financial data. By being either physically in the Innovation Center or virtually through the cloud, members of the health and healthcare communities can interact in real time to both test and demonstrate scenarios that elicit a specific product’s interoperability and other capabilities to improve quality and patient outcomes, cost-effective care coordination, secure data exchange and better business performance.

Within the Healthcare Technology Showcase, stakeholders view rolling exhibitions on information exchange, mobile health, consumer-driven health and more. The year-round exhibition space will further validate functionality for new and emerging products using standards and customized testing in both a physical and virtual demonstration environment.

HIMSS collaborators
HIMSS collaborators play a key role at the Innovation Center with their health IT solutions in place as ongoing demonstrations for healthcare providers to review and test products for their respective hospitals and clinical practices. This side-by-side comparison provides a unique and beneficial option for providers ready to invest in and upgrade health IT systems for use in their organizations.

[See also: HIMSS announces Alego Health as Founding Collaborator.]

The HIMSS Innovation Center Charter Collaborators are Alego Health, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT, Fujitsu, IHE USA, ICSA Labs, Total Voice Technologies, Cardinal Health, Juniper Networks and Concur.