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Four trends emerged at HIMSS this year

by John W. Mitchell, Senior Correspondent | March 01, 2017

4) A call for leadership

It can be a difficult to convince governing bodies in any industry that a workplace where employees feel inspired to come to work every day imparts genuine operating value to an organization. But there were examples of this truth to be found at HIMSS 2017.

A capacity crowd of 6,000 greeted IBM president and CEO Ginny Rometty and welcomed her optimistic, can-do vision of the future in the opening keynote address. Rometty cited the advancements of the cognitive use of big data — and its use with Watson — to revolutionize health care. "I am profoundly hopeful," Rometty told the audience. "I think we're at a time to reinvent and transform health care to an era of personalized medicine."

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Senior IT staff at Houston Methodist (HM) shared their successful journey from a legacy EHR transition to a new platform without a major complication. The seven-hospital system with 135 locations has nearly completed an EHR switch by relying on its employee-centric core values, which the leaders said are "ingrained in the fabric" of HM.

The values include: integrity, compassion, accountability, respect and excellence. For example, at the beginning of the conversion, each IT staff member received a letter from the CEO assuring them they would have a job at HM when the project was complete. The leadership team also asked employees for their input on how they could reconfigure their work to make the project successful.

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