HIMSS will be held in Las Vegas.

HIMSS Annual Conference and Exhibition

February 13, 2012
by Joanna Padovano, Reporter
HIMSS12: What's in store for this year's show

The first National Convention of the Healthcare and Information Management Systems Society—formerly known as the Hospital Management Systems Society—was held at the Emerson Hotel in Baltimore, Md., on April 1, 1962. At the time, the Georgia Institute of Technology-founded organization had less than 60 individual members; today that number has grown to more than 38,000.

The upcoming conference will take place from Feb. 20-24 at the Venetian-Palazzo Sands Expo Center in Las Vegas, Nev. “There were over 31,000 industry professionals from all over the world at HIMSS11, and 1,032 exhibiting companies,” JoAnn W. Klinedinst, vice president of professional development for HIMSS, told DOTmed News in an email. “We anticipate an equally strong participation in 2012.”

Attendees at the show will have the opportunity to choose from over 300 education events and see exhibitions from more than 1,100 companies. The theme of the event is “Linking People, Potential and Progress.”

Keynote speakers at HIMSS12 will include Biz Stone, cofounder of the popular social networking website Twitter; Farzad Mostashari, national coordinator for health information technology with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; Donna Brazile, political strategist and commentator and vice chair of voter registration and participation for the Democratic National Committee; Dana Perino, political commentator and former White House press secretary; Dan Buettner, writer, explorer and the founder of Blue Zones; and Terry Moran, television journalist.

The show will also feature Views from the Top presentations on topics such as care coordination, mobile health and quality, among others. Speakers will include Janet M. Corrigan, president and CEO of National Quality Forum; Mark T. Bertolini, chairman, CEO and president of Aetna; Lynn Britton, president and CEO of Mercy Hospital; William Showalter, vice president and CIO of Mercy Hospital; George C. Halvorson, chairman and CEO of the Kaiser Foundation; Todd Park, CTO of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; and Eric J. Topol, vice chairman of the board and CIO of the West Wireless Health Institute.

Other must-see events, according to Klinedinst, will be the HIMSS12 Interoperability Showcase, Intelligent Hospital Pavilion, Career Services Center and Social Media Center.

New to the show
For the first time ever, the HIMSS Annual Conference and Exhibition will feature Knowledge Centers, consisting of exhibition booths, education sessions and exhibitor case study presentations. The Knowledge Centers will focus on topics such as Mobile Health, Medical Devices Integration, Accountable Care Organizations/Value Based Purchasing, Cloud Computing, Clinical and Business Analytics/Intelligence and ICD-10.

This year’s show will also debut the Leaders and Innovators Program, which will include several interactive sessions focusing on the theme, “Does IT have a positive ROI in healthcare?” These invitation-only sessions will be geared toward senior provider health care executives.

Also new to the conference is the Advanced Business Development Workshop, during which leaders in the field of federal health IT will talk about important business strategies. Guest speakers will include Lori Davis, former chief information officer with the FDA; Rodney Benson, former director of acquisitions and grants with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services; and Vic Eilenfield, former deputy national coordinator for health IT at the Office of the National Coordinator.

HIMSS12 will also offer two new forums, one of which is the Global Executive Forum—presented by HIMSS Europe and HIMSS AsiaPac—during which attendees can learn about national strategies and future eHealth investments from various countries. The other is the Collaborative Health Consortium’s eCollaboration Forum, titled Collaborative Platforms: Foundations for Transformation to Accountable Care, slated to discuss trends in the collaborative care platforms industry.

In addition, this year’s show will feature the TIGER Institute: Exploring Informatics Competencies at the Leadership, Education and Practice Levels, a program that will feature five sessions on how education reform can be affected by informatics and technology.

Virtual HIMSS12
Certain portions of the event will be made available to those who are not able to experience the show in person. “The virtual conference comes to life based on demand from attendees and other professionals whose personal and professional commitments will not allow them to travel to attend a conference,” says Klinedinst.

Virtual HIMSS12, which can be accessed around the globe, will offer four simulcast keynotes, 12 simulcast education sessions and 12 on-demand sessions. The digital version of the show will also allow viewers to see a video overview of the exhibit floor, watch on-demand exhibitor presentations and speak with various vendors during specific time frames.