For the third consecutive year, the Congreso Argentino de Informática en Salud (Argentine Congress on Healthcare IT) will be held thanks to the joint efforts of several civil non-profit Argentine associations whose main focus is on healthcare IT: the Asociación Argentina de Informática Médica (Argentine Association of Medical Information Technology, AAIM), the Comité de Informática Médica de la Asociación Médica Argentina (Medical Information Technology Committee of the Argentine Medical Association, AMA), the Grupo de Informática Biomédica de Buenos Aires (Biomedical IT Group of Buenos Aires, GIBBA), HL7 Argentina, the Sociedad Argentina de Bioingeniería (Argentine Bioengineering Society, SABI) and the Sociedad Argentina de Informática (Argentine Information Technology Society, SADIO).
The event will be held between the 29th and 31st of August, once more in parallel with Jornadas Argentinas de Informática (Argentine IT Events, JAIIO) which is in its 41st edition, in the city of La Plata, at the Faculty of Information Technology at the Universidad Nacional de La Plata.
The chairs, Javier Solá and Sandra de la Fuente, spoke to EHealth Reporter Latin America, offering a glimpse of what the scientists, professionals, technicians, developers, administrators and businesspeople with links to healthcare Information Technology who attend the congress can expect.
EHealth Reporter Latin America: Can we expect anything new compared to the congress held in Cordoba last year?
Javier Solá: The important thing to emphasize this year is the joint effort we are making along with our colleagues in Chile, represented by Sandra de la Fuente, who is co-chairing this Congress.
Sandra de la Fuente: In Chile, we are also excited to be attending this event. There will be a significant presence of students from our University, ACHISA and DUOC.
EHRLA: Why is it important to attend?
JS: Because one of the issues that is currently most under discussion in the field of healthcare IT: interoperability, will be explored from different angles. The leading experts in the subject, such as Diego Kaminker, outgoing president of HL7 and Guillermo Reynoso, an expert at Snomed CT, will be present.
EHRLA: How advanced is interoperability in Argentina?
JS: Not only in our country, but in the region and I’d go so far as saying throughout the world, transferring an electronic health record is still an enormously difficult process. In this regard, the selection of this subject is linked to the fact that in spite of the great progress made in addressing physical aspects and the lack of connectivity, this has not been accompanied by greater semantic integration: as long as there are physical lines connecting different agents, they will continue to speak different “languages”.
EHRLA: What are the obstacles in the way?
SF: There are issues with regard to terminology, data structure, different levels of computerization and competence, among others. We have managed to organize an interesting lineup of speakers and workshops that will help to throw light on these questions.
JS: We really believe that the participation of everyone who works in the sector in different areas such as research, academia or the day to day interaction with clients, will be fruitful.
EHRLA: Who else should attend the congress?
JS: I would like many more small and mid-sized companies to get involved in what is a great setting for networking and learning. This year’s subject is fundamental to everyone. I believe that for small and mid-sized companies like mine, who offer high quality solutions, interoperability is a key question. It is what allows us to work with competitors and keep our clients faithful, because if our products can dialogue and share data at all levels of clinical care, we will be meeting a need that is currently lurking beneath the surface but that will be a top priority in the near future.