Top 5 videos from HIMSS17
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Top 5 videos from HIMSS17

HIMSS16 Social Media Ambassador Bill Bunting talks 2016 predictions, patient engagement

EMC director says he hopes social media 'turns into a virus' for which healthcare does not find the antidote.
By Tom Sullivan
09:37 AM
EMC director and HIMSS16 Social Media Ambassador Bill Bunting says social media has tremendous potential for healthcare.

You probably already know Bill Bunting as @WTBunting. But even his 13,800 Twitter followers might not know what fuels the HIMSS16 Social Media Ambassador’s passion for, in his words, “shifting the future of healthcare … so that we all have a voice.”

The Director of Healthcare Solutions at storage giant EMC shared what he hopes to learn at this year’s HIMSS conference, why he wanted to be a Social Media Ambassador, a health IT prediction for 2016, and more.

[Also: HIMSS reveals Social Media Ambassadors for HIMSS16]

And in the spirit of social media, Bunting answered these questions via Twitter. Where else?

Q: For starters, here, what inspired you to apply for the Social Media Ambassador program?

A: The opportunity to be part of a group of like-minded individuals all out for the cause of improving the healthcare of tomorrow. While we are all friends online, we rarely use our abilities together, and the SMA program offers us the ability to help spread the message of industry change as a unified force. And I’m in it for also the ability to learn more from my peers and really put the value of social media to work in healthcare.

Q: What’s something about you that even your devout followers likely don’t know?

A: High functioning Aspergers often gets the best of my abilities to express points-of-view correctly, but it’s also part of why I am so passionate about shifting the future of healthcare — so that we all have a voice, we are all treated equally, and we all have the best possible care available to us.

Q: What are you most looking forward to learning about at HIMSS16?

A: I always look forward to the sessions and the knowledge that can be taken away from my peers. But in recent years I have found an affinity for those vendors off the beaten path on the exhibition floor. Many of them have extraordinary technology, but only a few make it to the big leagues. It’s always fun to explore what they have to offer and hear their take on the future of our industry.

Q: One health IT prediction for 2016?

A: Venture capital funding will slow down for digital health startups as the market consolidates and larger entrants begin to place their claim. I also feel organizational adoption of digital technologies will pick up finally as innovation accelerates and consumers become more involved, active participants in monitoring their health.

Q: What is the untold benefit of social media in healthcare today?

A: I hope that social media turns into a virus that healthcare avoids finding an antidote for because it holds tremendous potential for connecting providers and patients on a level once never imagined — allowing for better patient engagement and empathy. But it also holds value for patients to connect with other patients to tell their stories and share knowledge.

Twitter: @SullyHIT

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