On November 9 and 10, SC HIMSS held its Annual Fall Conference in Columbia, SC. Almost 150 participants took advantage of a terrific program, and the chance to learn and to network with their peers in a comfortable setting with (very important!) great food and drink.
Thematically, the event aligned will with other work the Chapter and National HIMSS are focused on. Two significant focal areas, telehealth and cyber-security, are long-standing concerns of our member organizations, and are incorporated in both National and State Advocacy efforts.
The event kicked off with a keynote address from State Senator Thomas Alexander, who spoke on The Challenges of Telehealth and CyberSecurity in SC. Senator Alexander has long been a strong proponent of the use of telehealth in SC as a way to address provider coverage gaps in the rural areas of our state. He is one of several state legislators that the Chapter is working with on a regular basis to create a broader understanding and support among our legislators in the areas of telehealth and cybersecurity. Our Advocacy program (next Advocacy Day is next January 18!) is the primary vehicle for the Chapter’s engagement with the legislature.
Denise Hines followed Senator Alexander, speaking about HIMSS’ Women in Health IT Initiative: Celebrating Accomplishments, Advocating Change. Denise, who has served on the National HIMSS Board of Directors for the past two years and is President-elect of that group, provided insight into the Women in Health IT initiative and where it’s going. She presented data from the HIMSS Analytics database that provided clear insights in to the gaps that exist. She also reviewed recent efforts to address those gaps ad a look at the road forward. Some of our members have already been involved in focus group and meet-up activities over the past year, and there is more to come. If you’re going to be attending National HIMSS in Orlando next February, you are sure to see and hear more about this initiative.
The rest of the afternoon was focused on cyber-security. Mark Daniels of the Medical University of South Carolina, spoke on An Emerging Threat to Patient Data Privacy in an information-intensive presentation (those of you who know Mark would expect no less!). Mark was then joined by Prabhakar Chandrasakaran, former CISO for Spartanburg Regional, and Ryan Ewing of the FBI’s CyberSecurity division, for a panel discussion on Privacy and Security in South Carolina.
The first day ended with a networking reception. The food was great, and the conversation even better.
DAY 2 of the conference kicked off with a Telehealth Panel Discussion that had representatives from telehealth initiatives from across the state: Amelia Bischoff of Palmetto Health System, Christiana Novakovic of Greenville Health System, Matt Reich of McLeod Health and Shawn Valenta of MUSC. This panel of experienced telehealth veterans shared experiences, obstacles overcome and best practices with the attendees in a lively Q&A session.
The rest of the day’s activities took place in two parallel tracks. Topics ranged from strategic (innovation, patient engagement and satisfaction, impact of MACRA, telehealth strategy), to technical discussions on topics such as Big Data and Business Intelligence, data quality and integrity, RTLS / RFID best practices, best practices for leveraging mobility. Definitely something for everyone!
During breaks on both days, the attendees were able to network with one another and to get acquainted with solutions provided by the Chapter Sponsors. There were a lot of interesting solutions on display, and real-world examples of how these solutions improve care delivery.
The end of the day featured a raffle of some fabulous parting gifts (cue music!) provided by the Chapter’s Sponsors, providing some terrific rewards for attendees having stayed the course.
We would like to thank the Chapter’s Sponsors for their support of this event and their ongoing support of the Chapter. This event would not have been possible without their generous support. Those Sponsors include:
Premier Level: CDW, Hewlett Packard and Lenovo Health
Corporate Level: Commvault/dynamix, HealthCatalyst, Time Warner Cable Business Class
Partner Level: Blue Cirrus, GCX Mounting Solutions, Leidos, Obix Perinatal Data Systems