Written by: John Lynn
As most of you know, I attend quite a few healthcare IT conferences. This is aided by many great conferences coming to my hometown of Las Vegas. Next week this happens again when the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) happens in Las Vegas. If you thought HIMSS was big, you should attend CES to see what big really is. CES is insane. It’s so large that I think that Las Vegas is the only convention city that can support its size. CES takes over both the Las Vegas Convention Center and the Sands Convention Center and that’s just for the official show.
I’ve been attending CES ever since I moved to Las Vegas about 7 years ago. At first I mostly attended CES to enjoy the “circus.” I’d just walk onto the CES show floor and get lost in the flashing lights, incredible products, showy booths, and just about everything else you could imagine on an exhibit floor. It was always a fun experience and I’d always happen upon something healthcare IT related in my wanderings.
A couple years ago, CES started to create essentially mini-conferences within the larger CES conference. One of those focuses was healthcare IT and was called the Digital Health Summit. Since those small beginnings the digital health portion of CES has grown into a really interesting place to see various consumer health IT products.
The Digital Health Summit is broken into two areas. First, they have the educational programming piece which is 2 days of digital health panels. You can see the full Digital Health Summit agenda here. One thing I love about the Digital Health Summit is that it’s not the regular healthcare IT speakers. In fact, in many cases it is people who you won’t find at other healthcare IT conferences you might attend. So, you’re guaranteed to hear some different perspectives on healthcare IT that you hadn’t heard before. Plus, they bring in big names like Arianna Huffington, Sanjay Gupta, and Deepak Chopra MD.
The second part of the Digital Health Summit is a section of the CES show floor that is focused on digital health. Each year I’ve attended the Digital Health section of CES has grown larger and larger. It’s usually an interesting mix of devices, exercise equipment, healthcare companies (like United Health Group), and other amazing healthcare technology (like the Genetic sequencer at last year’s CES). I even found an EHR company at CES one year. It seems that healthcare devices are really coming into their own this year and so I expect the exhibit hall to be stock full of the latest medical devices.
I’m sure I’ll be tweeting from CES on @ehrandhit when I find cool things. Plus, I’m sure I’ll capture a picture or two of the craziness that is CES (like the guy last year who was doing double back flips on a trampoline wearing skis).
If you’re going to be at CES, let me know. I always love meeting people at the event and enjoying the craziness together.