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Healthcare Scene Interview with Steve Lieber at the Close of #HIMSS17

Posted on March 2, 2017 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

As the HIMSS 2017 Annual conference came to a close, Healthcare Scene had the opportunity to sit down with Steve Lieber, President and CEO of HIMSS, who will be retiring at the end of the year. Being the last HIMSS conference with Steve Lieber at the helm, we wanted to get a feel for how Steve was feeling and take a look back at his 17 years at the helm of this organization.

In this interview, we talk with Steve about how HIMSS has changed over his 17 years running the organization and about some of the pivotal moments in that time. We also ask Steve about his replacement. While he didn’t give us any names he did give us some idea of the process for finding his replacement and what type or attributes the search committee will look at in selecting the new President and CEO of HIMSS. Finally, we wrap up with Steve giving some advice to healthcare IT professionals and even ask Steve if he takes pride in what he and HIMSS have accomplished.

Check out the full interview with Steve Lieber below:

Regardless of how you feel about HIMSS, it’s an impressive organization that puts on an impressive conference. It’s not easy to grow a conference to 40,000 attendees and 1200 vendors and Steve’s been at the helm of its growth. Thanks for sharing your insights with us Steve.

If you enjoyed this interview, subscribe to Healthcare Scene on YouTube and browse the full playlist of healthcare IT interviews we’ve done.

Maximizing Your #HIMSS17 Experience – Whether Attending Physically or Virtually – #HITsm Chat Topic

Posted on February 7, 2017 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

We’re excited to share the topic and questions for this week’s #HITsm chat happening Friday, 2/10 at Noon ET (9 AM PT). This week’s chat will be hosted by Steve Sisko (@HITConfGuy and @shimcode). We’ll be discussing the topic “Maximizing Your HIMSS17 Experience – Whether Attending Physically or Virtually“.

To most of of us who operate in the healthcare and information technology space, the HIMSS Conference & Exhibition is considered to be the SuperBowl of all healthcare conferences. It’s been happening for a long time (since 1961), it’s attended by a huge number of people (about 45,000 attendees projected for 2017), it’s surrounded by lots of pomp and circumstance leading up to the event and it can be enjoyed by not only those attending in person but also those attending “virtually.”

The intention for the #HITsm chat on February 10th is to share information, ideas, opinions and tips for getting the most out of this annual healthcare mega-event.

The Topics
Here are the topics to help flesh out the theme of ‘Maximizing Your HIMSS17 Experience – Whether Attending Physically or Virtually.’

T1: What do you think will be ‘stand out’ topic(s,) technologies, presentations & exhibitors at #HIMSS17 and why? #HITsm

T2: What are the 2 or 3 top things you hope to leave #HIMSS17 with and how will you use them to create value after the event? #HITsm

T3: What are your favorite sources & tips for getting the most out of your physical or virtual attendance at the #HIMSS17 Conference? #HITsm

T4: What type of content, info, and/or media do you want those attending the #HIMSS17 conference to share via their social channels? #HITsm

T5: If you could ask a #HIMSS17 conference attendee to share w/ you only one thing from the conference, what would it be? #HITsm

Bonus: Who should have been a #HIMSS17 Social Media ambassador and wasn’t but that you’d recommend to your followers? #HITsm

#HIMSS17 Meetup with #HITsm and #hcldr
If you’ll be at HIMSS, we’re doing a physical #HITsm meetup combined with the #hcldr community on Tuesday, 2/21 from 10:00-10:45 AM ET at the Orlando Convention Center Lobby Hall D. There will likely be many people participating in the meetup virtually using the #HITsm and #hcldr hashtags as well. Here’s a link to find more details on this meetup and other Healthcare Scene meetups at HIMSS17.

Upcoming #HITsm Chat Schedule
2/17 – Enough talk, lets #GSD (Get Stuff Done)
Hosted by Burt Rosen (@burtrosen) from @healthsparq

2/24 – HIMSSanity Recovery Chat
With #HIMSS17 happening the week of this chat, we’ll take the week off from a formal chat. However, we encourage people that attended HIMSS or watched HIMSS remotely to share a “Tweetstorm” that tells a #HIMSS17 story, shares insights about a topic, rants on a topic of interest, or shows gratitude. Plus, it will be fun to test out a new form of tweetstorm Twitter chat. We’ll post more details as we get closer.

We look forward to learning from the #HITsm community! As always let us know if you have ideas for how to make #HITsm better.

If you’re searching for the latest #HITsm chat, you can always find the latest #HITsm chat and schedule of chats here.

Where to Meetup and Connect with People at #HIMSS17

Posted on February 1, 2017 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

The 2017 HIMSS Annual Conference is just around the corner. For those not familiar with the event, it’s the mecca of healthcare IT conferences that brings together somewhere in the neighborhood of 50,000 attendees and 1300 exhibitors in one place. It’s a weekly long feast for someone like me who eats, breathes, and sleeps healthcare IT. Although, it can be a bit overwhelming for those attending for their first time.

One of the things I’ve learned over my years attending HIMSS is that my favorite part of the conference is meeting and connecting with other brilliant healthcare IT minds. There are certainly some great educational opportunities that I’ll never forget and I’m always interested in what’s happening with the exhibitors at HIMSS, but the most satisfying experiences I have at HIMSS are the discussions, debates, and insight sharing that occurs with attendees.

With this in mind, I’ve put together a whole schedule of HIMSS 2017 meetups where anyone can join and participate in the discussion with myself and other experts. We welcome everyone to join us and share an alternate point of view, ask hard questions, and share insights that might help others in attendance. These meetups are a judgement free zone where everyone is welcome. However, you should expect vigorous debate, strong opinions, and respectful perspectives. That’s how we all learn and grow together.

You’ll find all the Healthcare Scene meetups listed below. Each meetup has its own topic, so browse through the list and select the ones that interest you most. Please invite any of your friends and/or colleagues who have an interest, experience, or expertise in any of these areas as well. A few have a registration, but the rest you can just plan to show up at the location at the specified time. Ask for the meetup and we’ll be easy to find.

Monday, February 20, 2017 HIMSS Meetups

HIMSS Social Media Ambassador Meetup – Monday, 2/20, 11:00-11:45 AM at the HIMSS Spot (Lobby C)
We’re honored that Healthcare Scene’s very own @techguy was selected as 1 of 20 HIMSS Social Media Ambassadors. This is a select group of some of the most influential people in healthcare IT social media. This meetup organized by HIMSS will bring together the 20 social media ambassadors to talk about insights into healthcare IT, HIMSS17 and social media.

Healthcare Consumerism Meetup – Monday, 2/20, 1:00-2:00 PM at the Dell EMC Booth #3161
At this meetup, we welcome you to join us in a discussion about a topic which will impact all of us: Healthcare Consumerism. It’s clear that patients are becoming more active, involved and informed in their healthcare. At this meetup, we’ll discuss how far healthcare consumerism will go and what this means for healthcare. We’ll discuss the challenges and opportunities this presents along with a realistic discussion of who holds the power in healthcare today and where that could go in the future. We’ll be tweeting on the #TransformHIT hashtag during the event.

Cloud Security Meetup – Monday, 2/20, 3:00-4:00 PM at the CDW Healthcare Booth #2761
This meetup and discussion will be led by my partner Shahid Shah (@shahidnshah), Neal Clark, Cloud Client Executive at CDW Healthcare, and myself. If you’re like most healthcare organizations and one of your bigggest challenges is cloud security, you’ll want to take part in this discussion. We’ll be discussing topics such as ransomware, the shadow IT risk, and ensuring cloud security from HIPAA business associates. Be sure to register for the meetup here.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017 HIMSS Meetups

#HITsm and #hcldr Meetup – Tuesday, 2/21, 10:00-10:45 AM at the Orlando Convention Center Lobby Hall D
We’re going back to our roots and doing a true tweetup with the combined #HITsm and #hcldr crowds at HIMSS 2017. I think we have got some ideas on how to make this meetup special. First of all, we’ve enlisted the help of community rock stars Sarah Bennight (@SarahBennight), Mandi Bishop (@MandiBPro), and Shahid Shah (@ShahidNShah) to help us facilitate the meetup. This way everyone who comes will hopefully feel welcome and get a chance to meet and connect with incredible members of the #HITsm and #hcldr communities. Join us as we connect and collaborate to improve healthcare.

Digital Transformation Meetup – Tuesday, 2/21, 11:30-12:30 PM at the Dell EMC Booth #3161
We all hear about and talk about Healthcare Transformation or Healthcare Disruption, but what does this really mean to the healthcare Industry? Join us at this meetup where we’ll cut through the jargon and hype and talk about how we can pursue authentic collaboration that truly transforms healthcare. Plus, we’ll discuss trends in healthcare that are going to disrupt the status quo and how we can make sure our organizations are prepared for those changes. I’m also really pleased that the HC Disruptors group that Michael Joseph (@HealthData4All) started will be joining us. At the end of the day, our goal for this meetup is to explore how we can all be agents for change in making healthcare better. Join us for this open discussion. We’ll be tweeting on the #TransformHIT hashtag during the event.

Get Ready for Precision Health Meetup – Tuesday, 2/21, 2:00-2:45 PM at the Intel Booth #2661
Precision Health is the future of healthcare, but many healthcare organizations are still trying to figure out what they can do with all this data. Join us at this meetup to discuss the impact of precision medicine on patients, clinicians, and IT experts. Plus, we’ll dive into what your organization can do today to make sure you’re ready for precision health. If your organization is up to your ears in data and not sure how to use it, join us for this discussion. This meetup will also be available live via Periscope on @IntelHealth.

Strategies to Enhance Your Professional Profile Meetup – Tuesday, 2/21, 4:00-5:00 PM at the Hyatt Regency Orlando – HIMSS Career Fair – 4Medapproved Booth #12
For those career concious people, this meetup will take place at the HIMSS Career Fair that’s across the street at the Hyatt Regency. We’re pleased to have Wendy Whitmore from 4Medapproved, Jeff Cunio from Pivot Point Consulting (A Vaco Company), Christine “Chris” Hutchison from Encore (A Quintiles Company), and myself leading the discussion. If you’re looking for a job or you’re looking to hire someone, join us at this meetup and you will not be disappointed by the engaging discussion and networking. Be sure to sign up if you plan to attend.

New Media Meetup – Tuesday, 2/21, 6:00-8:00 PM at Cuba Libre at Pointe Orlando
This is the 8th annual New Media Meetup at HIMSS. This event brings together most of the influential people in Healthcare IT social media and a wide variety of journalists, bloggers and readers as well. Plus, thanks to our sponsor, Stericycle Communication Solutions, we’ll have food, drinks, and some killer giveaways. This event does require you to register to attend, so please be sure to register if you plan to join us.

That’s all the HIMSS 2017 meetups we have scheduled for now. That’s probably enough, but if we add any more, we’ll be sure to update this post with others.

Dell, CDW, Intel, and Stericycle are all sponsors of Healthcare Scene and paid to sponsor a number of these meetups.

8th Annual New Media Meetup at #HIMSS17 Sponsored by Stericycle Communication Solutions

Posted on January 12, 2017 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

8th Annual New Media Meetup - HIMSS17 in Orlando

For those of you planning to attend the HIMSS 2017 conference in Orlando, I’m excited to share the details of the 8th Annual New Media Meetup at HIMSS. For those who’ve missed the last 7 events, it’s a unique event that brings together healthcare IT bloggers, tweeters, and other social media influencers at the mecca of Healthcare IT conferences.

It’s incredible to think how far social media, blogging, and other new media formats have changed since we first started the New Media Meetup 8 years ago. What hasn’t changed is how many incredible connections happen on social media and how much fun we have meeting in person at the New Media Meetup during HIMSS. We’re lucky to have Stericycle Communication Solutions supporting our desire to bring together the best healthcare IT influencers at this incredible event. I hope everyone will spend some time checking out Stericycle Communication Solutions and thank them for sponsoring the event.

If you’d like to attend the event, please make sure you register.

Here’s a quick summary of what we have planned for the event:
When: Tuesday 2/21 6:00-8:00 PM
Where: Cuba Libre at Pointe Orlando, 9101 International Dr, Orlando, FL 32819 MAP (Cuba Libre is a short walk from the convention center.)
Who: Anyone who uses or is interested in New Media (Blogs, Twitter, Social Media, YouTube Live, Facebook, etc)
What: Food, Drinks, Dance Floor, Giveaways, and Amazing People

Register Now!

Sponsored by Stericycle Communication Solutions
SRCL Communication Solutions
Stericycle Communication Solutions helps bring patients and healthcare organizations closer together. We believe that the key to patient engagement and positive patient experiences is effective and timely communication. Stericycle Communication Solutions is a leading provider of live agent services and technology solutions including high quality telephone answering, online appointment scheduling, and automated communication services; allowing patients and providers to interact through multiple communication channels such as phone, email, voice, text and online.

Learn more at: www.stericyclecommunications.com

Those interested in the New Media Meetup at HIMSS will want to check out the full scale Healthcare IT Marketing and PR Conference that we’re hosting in Las Vegas April 5-7, 2017. It’s a special 3 days devoted to health IT marketing and PR professionals.

A really big thank you also goes out to all the members of Influential Networks and Healthcare Scene that help promote the New Media Meetup. This event was originally brought together through social media and is still largely organized thanks to social media.

Let me know if you have any questions and I look forward to seeing many of you in Orlando very soon!

“Tell Me Something I Don’t Know” with Jonathan Bush from AthenaHealth

Posted on April 26, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

When I got the request at HIMSS 11 to be able to sit down and talk with Jonathan Bush, CEO of AthenaHealth, I knew that I had to take it. Him and I had a very interesting conversation and he’s a fascinating individual since you never know what he might say next.

On that note, I decided that I better get Jonathan Bush on video at HIMSS. In fact, I think it might have been the only video I did at HIMSS. Although, once I saw how easy it was to upload this video from my phone, I might have to do more EMR related videos on the future. Although, I’ll probably need to hold it the other way.

Now to the video. The basic idea of “Tell Me Something I Don’t Know” comes from the Sunday show that Chris Matthew’s does. In the segment, the people try and tell you something you probably don’t know. I decided to do the same with Jonathan Bush using the various buzzwords at HIMSS: meaningful use, ACOs, incentive money, and healthcare reform.


Video of Jonathan Bush at HIMSS 11
Sorry the video quality and ambient noise isn’t the best. It was on a cell phone in a crowded exhibit hall.

Side Note: If you like videos, let me know. I’m thinking about doing more of them. Possibly some Q and A style videos. If you are interested, drop a question in the comments and I can use them for a future video.

Free HD TV Giveaway Winner at HIMSS Sponsored by Practice Fusion

Posted on March 10, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Many of you that I saw at HIMSS were aware that I participated in a Free HD TV Giveaway contest with fellow blogger: Dr. Joseph Kim. The giveaway was sponsored by Free EHR vendor Practice Fusion.

I’m really happy to say that @WesBates picture with me won him a 42″ HD TV and thanks in large part to those who attended the New Media Meetup I was able to beat out Dr. Kim as well. I just got the TV yesterday and it’s awesome. Thanks Practice Fusion!

It was pretty interesting wearing a Practice Fusion shirt around the HIMSS exhibit hall. Many of the people that I talked to asked about the shirt. However, I was a bit surprised that I didn’t get more people riping the Free EHR business model. Instead, it seemed like most people were familiar with it.

The 3 questions I did get asked the most about Practice Fusion was about their long term viability, how they make money offering a Free EHR, and whether a Free EHR is as good as the other EHR that you pay a lot of money to get. I asked Emily from Practice Fusion these questions and here were her responses:

1. Viability – We had 500% user growth in 2010 and doubled our team. The company has been very successful in attracting advertisers, partners (Dell, DeVry, Microsoft) and investors. We have 70,000 users serving 8 million patients today. And we bring on 300 more each day (compared to AthenaHealth brining on 600 docs in Q4). There’s a lot of strength in our numbers. Happy to answer any specific questions here.

2. How does Practice Fusion make money – Our favorite question! Practice Fusion is ad-supported, just like the radio, Gmail and EMR & HIPAA. Our discrete advertising allows the EHR to be available entirely free for any doctor in the US.

3. Quality – We were so honored when Black Book Rankings announced we were voted #1 EHR for 2011 primary care in January. Practice Fusion was up against EHRs that cost tens of thousands and still came away with the most #1 awards for categories including reliability, support, best-of-breed technology and delivery excellence. Forget “you get what you pay for” – that report proved that a free EHR could definitely be the best EHR.

To expand on all three of these: one thing that’s core to Practice Fusion is our alignment with our users. Since we’re an ad-supported product, we only succeed if doctors actually use the product. Our focus is on support, training and continuous product enhancement because of this. You saw it yourself when we completely re-did the getting started process inside the EHR over the end of the year. Keeping our users happy is fundamental to our growth. It seems simple, but surprising rare in the health IT sector.

It was fun to take pictures with so many cool people. Unfortunately, I did a poor job of keeping track of all the pictures. However, here’s a few of them that I did get to give you a flavor for the cool people I met:

EMRandHIPAA.com’s HIMSS11 coverage is sponsored by Practice Fusion, provider of the free, web-based Electronic Medical Records (EMR) system used by over 70,000 healthcare providers in the US.

Meaningful Use Monday: Meaningful Use? – Not Yet

Posted on March 7, 2011 I Written By

Lynn Scheps is Vice President, Government Affairs at EHR vendor SRSsoft. In this role, Lynn has been a Voice of Physicians and SRSsoft users in Washington during the formulation of the meaningful use criteria. Lynn is currently working to assist SRSsoft users interested in showing meaningful use and receiving the EHR incentive money.

At the recent HIMSS annual conference, many statistics were released touting the early success of the EHR incentives/meaningful use program:

  • 21,000 providers have registered, with many more having indicated their intention to do so.
  • 62 Regional Extension Centers have enrolled 47,000 primary care physicians.
  • 6 certification bodies (ATCBs) have certified 415 EHRs and modules.
  • $20 million in incentives has already been paid to 25 providers (including hospitals) in 4 states.

Does this mean that anyone has successfully demonstrated meaningful use? Not yet. The incentives were awarded by the first Medicaid programs for the “adoption, implementation, or upgrade” (A/I/U) of certified EHR technology—a Medicaid-only provision for first-year incentives. The first demonstrations of meaningful use will not be attested to until April, when the early Medicare participants will complete their 90-day reporting period.

Lynn Scheps is Vice President, Government Affairs at EMR vendor SRSsoft. In this role, Lynn has been a Voice of Physicians and SRSsoft users in Washington during the formulation of the meaningful use criteria. Lynn is currently working to assist SRSsoft users interested in showing meaningful use and receiving the EHR incentive money.

New Media Meetup at #HIMSS11 Pictures and Video

Posted on February 28, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.


I couldn’t agree more with @MattA_PCMH. I’m obviously biased since I organized the event, but the good part is that it far exceeded my expectations. You never know what’s going to happen when the people attending the event essentially came from two blog posts and a bunch of tweets and retweets. As I mentioned at the meetup, It’s also an amazing illustration of the power of social media.

I was highly impressed with the quality of the people that attended. Besides the fact that it’s fun to meet people IRL (in real life) that you feel like you know because you follow them on Twitter and/or their blog, it’s also neat to meet people from across the spectrum of healthcare IT that’s represented at HIMSS. Despite the various differences and backgrounds, we all had one collective bond: interest in New Media (Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, etc). I think that’s what makes this meetup unique, interesting and a lot of fun!

A really big thanks to our main sponsor MEDecision for the food, drinks, venue and Flip video camera giveaways. Thanks also to Ozmosis for sponsoring the iPad giveaway. I think MEDecision must have seen my flip video camera envy, because at the end of the event they were incredibly kind and hooked me up with my own flip video camera. Very classy organization and I can’t wait to see what we can put together for the 3rd Annual New Media Meetup at HIMSS12 in Las Vegas. I told MEDecision we were going to have to go Big since I call Las Vegas home. I’m sure they’ll deliver like they have the past two meetups.

Someone on Twitter also brought up the idea of a Young Professionals meetup at HIMSS. I think I might have to explore this idea a bit more for next year since it would be an interesting compliment to the New Media Meetup. I’ll just have to set the age high enough that I’m considered a young professional.

Now for a few pictures from the New Media Meetup at HIMSS 2011 (click on the pictures twice to see the full picture):

And this video at the tail end of the meetup after most of the people had cleared out, but some familiar faces were still hanging around:

About Sponsors
MEDecision offers collaborative healthcare management solutions that provide a simple and smart way for payers and providers to harness the power of knowledge to enable the best clinical decisions and improve health outcomes. Designed around a patient-aware health management philosophy, MEDecision’s solutions include Alineo, Nexalign, and InFrame.

Ozmosis provides a social powered knowledge management solution to healthcare enterprises. It’s flagship platform, OzmosisESP, enables clinicians, administrators, staff and researchers at hospitals and health systems to collaboratively develop, manage, and share knowledge within a fully integrated and indexed repository of clinical content and user expertise.

HIMSS11 EMR Company and EMR Market Wrap Up

Posted on February 25, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

It’s going to take a couple weeks to really process all that I saw and heard at HIMSS 2011. In fact, there’s no doubt that much of the content I publish over the next month or two will be things I learned from the people I learned from at HIMSS or influenced by what I saw and heard. However, after a good night’s sleep in my own bed I’m really happy with my experience at HIMSS. The energy and passion for healthcare IT that was found at HIMSS was really powerful and wonderful to be apart of.

I think those people out there that are asking if we’re in a healthcare IT bubble right now are on the mark. There’s very little doubt in my mind that we’re in a healthcare IT bubble. It’s a feature of $36+ billion in EHR incentive money being given out by the government. I can’t remember the size of the EMR market numbers off the top of my head, but $36 billion in money coming into what is a relatively small market is going to change things dramatically. So, it makes sense that this type of infusion of money would create a bubble of sorts.

One person in their comments that we’re in a healthcare IT bubble asked if the bubble would pop before HIMSS 12 in Las Vegas. I believe we have at least one or two more years before the healthcare IT bubble pops. In fact, if you thought that HIMSS 11 in Orlando was big, I predict that HIMSS 2012 in Las Vegas will be even bigger. The EHR incentive money will have started flowing and the trench battles will be in full swing as the 300+ EMR vendors battle each other for customers.

EMR software was obviously my focus at the conference and despite my comments about the lack of innovation by EMR vendors and the future of EMR, I think there are a ton of really interesting EMR approaches that in aggregate are going to impact the EMR world in really dramatic ways. Here’s some examples:

  • Azzly described a meeting of EHR vendors they attended with ONC. The question was asked which EHR vendors in the room started development after the HITECH act was announced. Azzly was the only one to raise their hand. I’m sure there’s other EHR vendors in that same boat, but it will be interesting to see an Azzly EHR that was built post incentive go up against the legacy EHR software.
  • ClearPractice was the first native iPad EMR (called Nimble) that I’d seen and there’s no doubt they’ve made a big play in that space. Will that combined with the backing of John Doerr and their internet driven sales change EMR as we know it?
  • Will larger companies like Greenway and Sage continue to gain market share as they go after the EMR market while maintaining their customer experience? Or will they head the way of the Misys of the world and be bought up by other EMR vendors?
  • What about NaviNet‘s entrance into the EMR world? Can they leverage their existing connections with so many providers to be a major player in not just interoperability but in EMR as well?
  • Even the big behemoth of a company, GE surprised me when I visited with them. There was a polish and a professionalism that I loved about my visit with GE and GE’s Centricity Advance people. I think there’s a fair comparison with Microsoft. Something about the nature of the US loves the underdog and hates the big name player. Yet, the big company just keeps executing their vision and many doctors are going to happily buy and use their products.
  • What about Ingenix‘s multiple EMR offering strategy? Will it just be confusing to clinicians or will they effectively differentiate their various offerings while providing a backbone for interoperability as well? Is the future large EMR vendor one that aggregates a bunch of niche specific EMR companies?
  • What impact will the transcription based EMR vendors have on the market? I wrote about the change from transcription company to EMR vendor earlier this week. Watch for the names MD-IT, FutureNet, Intivia, and MxSecure.
  • Many people probably don’t recognize the name MedPlus. However, everyone knows the company behind the MedPlus Care360 EMR: Quest Diagnostics. There’s something powerful about being able to turn on an EMR in a medical practice with basically the flip of an electronic switch. That’s what MedPlus can do since Care360 is already being used in so many clinics that use Quest for their lab work. Add in their existing lab sales staff that already have relationships with large numbers of clinics and they’re going to be a very interesting player in the EMR space.
  • Free EMR is a really compelling marketing tool. There’s a reason that Practice Fusion and Mitochon Systems free EMR offerings get so much press and so many doctors evaluating their EMR offerings. While many might disagree with their model or even believe that it will fail, these companies have and will have an interesting impact on the EMR landscape.
  • MicroMD offers an interesting approach. First, because of their existing LONG term practice management clients. Second, because of the interesting integration with the supply side of their company. Not to mention, the executives that I met with were some of the most realistic people and well thought out people I met at HIMSS.
  • Props to EMR company MIE that could use a fake EMR company (Extormity) to launch themselves into the EMR discussion while also helping to open up the discussion as well.  If I were a doctor, I’d want to demo their EMR just so I could see if I could find any Extormity features in their EMR.  Although, maybe that’s just the blogger in me.

I could keep going on, but that gives you a bit of flavor of some interesting EMR vendors and their market approaches. Plus, this is just 16 of the 300+ EMR companies that are working in this space. Each one with their own interesting story.

The most exciting thing for an EMR nerd like myself is that we’re really only at the beginning. Wait until we get beyond 15-25% adoption and reach 50% adoption. Then, the fun really begins.

Full Disclosure: Practice Fusion, MD-IT, MxSecure, and Mitochon Systems are all advertisers on this site. EMRandHIPAA.com’s HIMSS11 coverage was also sponsored by Practice Fusion, provider of the free, web-based Electronic Medical Records (EMR) system used by over 70,000 healthcare providers in the US.

EHR Innovations Have Gone Missing at HIMSS11

Posted on February 23, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

One of the most disappointing parts of HIMSS for me is that the really creative and disruptive innovations are missing from HIMSS. There are a few items I saw like the Shareable Ink technology, some of the Nuance NLP/voice recognition work, and a pretty cool biometric kiosk by Fujitsu (which I’ll blog about later). Sadly I wasn’t seeing the really creative innovation coming from the EMR companies (and I talked to a lot of them) at HIMSS. I think there’s two possible things at play in this regard.

First, meaningful use is probably largely to blame for much of the lack of innovation that I saw. As someone told me, the regulation of EHR software has damaged and deterred the innovation. I guess you could say I’ve seen some interesting and innovative ways to approach meaningful use, but being innovative in meeting a government regulation is not the innovation I want to see. I think it’s generally clear that EMR vendors have spent the last development cycle focused on EHR certification and meaningful use.

I asked one large EMR vendor about this idea and what innovations their EHR had available. I don’t think he was very comfortable with the assertion. In response, he described how at his EMR company, they had a team that was focused on EHR certification and the meaningful use requirements but that they also had a whole other group that was focused on customer’s needs and meeting those customer needs.

It’s incredibly interesting that so many EHR vendors responded to my innovation (or what differentiated them from other vendors) by playing the EMR usability or “Doctors like using our EMR” better card. That’s related to the above, we have a group that focuses on our customer’s needs.

Certainly focusing on customer requests and needs is vital. However, it seems fitting to mention the oft quoted, “If I asked my customers what they wanted, they’d have said a faster horse. – Henry Ford” Seems like HIMSS was just displaying the faster “horses” [EMR].

A second possibility is that maybe EMR software has become a commodity. Maybe the reason we don’t see that much innovation is because EMR software has now basically become a commodity. I certainly heard many EMR vendors suggest that EMR is basically a commodity service now and that many other factors will determine the success of the EMR company instead of the EMR software itself. I argue that once you reach a certain set of features, functions and successful installs that the software itself does become secondary to the success of most EMR companies. Does that mean EMR is a commodity?

The other angle that a few new EMR vendors are taking is that EMR is not a commodity. It’s just that all the current EMR software is junk. Most then like to compare EMR software to tablets. The Apple iPad came along and finally presented what amounts to an incredibly well thought out and designed tablet and is destroying the market. These new EMR vendors see their product as the innovative “iPad” of EMR software.

Only problem is that I have yet to see any EMR company have an iPad-onian moment.

I could easily argue that the iPad was the most marketed IT device on the HIMSS exhibit floor. Yet, an Apple booth was absolutely no where to be seen.

I wonder what kind of EHR could be so innovative and disruptive that it would be the talk of HIMSS even if they didn’t exhibit?

EMRandHIPAA.com’s HIMSS11 coverage is sponsored by Practice Fusion, provider of the free, web-based Electronic Medical Records (EMR) system used by over 70,000 healthcare providers in the US.