New at HIMSS13: Annual conference aims to keep up with evolving industry

By Healthcare IT News
09:22 AM

From year to year, one thing that is guaranteed to happen between HIMSS annual conferences is that the health IT landscape will change, usually in dramatic fashion.  

So to keep healthcare stakeholders up to date on all the changes, the HIMSS annual conference must change, as well.  And this year is no exception.

The first thing to note about the 2013 HIMSS Annual Conference & Exhibition is that the schedule has changed once again.  After last year, when the conference ran from Monday through Friday, HIMSS13 has returned to the more traditional Sunday through Thursday schedule.

Sunday, March 3, is officially “pre-conference” day, and this year HIMSS has organized several first-time symposia. From looking at the “science and practice” of innovation, to examining Native American healthcare issues, to following the mHIMSS Roadmap and building your own app, this year’s day-long symposia are designed to give attendees an in-depth look at some of the health IT sector’s most important issues.

Those issues, of course, can’t be fully explored in a day, and there are more of them than ever. For that reason, HIMSS has expanded its array of educational sessions for Monday through Thursday.  Indeed, the selections are so extensive that HIMSS also developed a new function for the conference website: the “I am . . .” drop-down menu.  To make the job of planning your stay at HIMSS13 a little more manageable, simply choose the job title that most closely matches yours from the drop-down menu, and up will come the educational sessions, workshops, speakers and networking opportunities that address your professional interests.

HIMSS13 Online

It never fails; some health IT professionals can’t manage to pull away from the office long enough to attend the HIMSS conference in person.  For those people, there’s HIMSS13 online.

Both live and on-demand sessions will be available via the website, including most of the keynote speakers, nine on-demand education sessions, 10 live simulcast education sessions, white papers, product briefs and moderated live chats, to name just a few of the offerings.

Another specialty program is the Global Health Forum. Global health has become a strategic priority for the US government, to the extent that HHS recently created a global health initiative. To provide an overview of  the various projects and public private partnerships (PPPs),  and to discuss how this area is being proactively addressed, representatives of the World Bank and USAID, as well as HHS, will be participating in the first-ever HIMSS Global Health Forum.

From the Global to the Personal

HIMSS13 will provide attendees with a look around the healthcare universe, but it will also offer more options than ever to those who are looking for help with their own career.  Both the CAHIMS and CPHIMS review courses and exams will be offered as in past years, but this year HIMSS is introducing its Career Services Institute (CSI).  

Whether you’re at the entry level, intermediate or advanced stage of your career, the CSI gives you a chance both to network and to learn more about how best to plan, prepare and pursue your career in health IT.

Finally, first-time offerings from the Exhibit Floor include the Meaningful Use Experience and the Health IT Angel Venture Fair & Strategic Partner Forum.  The Meaningful Use Experience is a special demonstration area on the exhibit floor that will enable attendees to network with certified solution providers, hear presentations and see multiple demonstrations for side-by-side comparisons.

As for the Angel Venture Fair & Strategic Partner Forum, it’s a chance for investors and entrepreneurs to get together and hear about each other’s ideas and potential opportunities.
More information on these and other first-time activities at HIMSS13 can be found on