My post-HIMSS17 top 5 list

Magic-Boy

It is official. I had a very successful #HIMSS17 in sunny Orlando. What made it such a positive and fruitful experience?

Well, between the meetings held with industry analysts and trade media contacts, the education sessions and the networking with colleagues, customers and everyone in between, my head is spinning with new information and a fresh perspective.

My top five HIMSS17 takeaways

While I have a lot to say, here are my top five takeaways from the most important healthcare IT conference in the United States:

1. It’s a small, small world.

Not long after my initial HIMSS blog post ran, I received a call from my mom to let me know I have a family member who also works at Hyland. Apparently, my first-cousin once removed is on the healthcare development team.

If you know Hyland, you know it is extraordinarily connected by marriage and blood relationships that tend to make us a little more accountable. Little did I know, I am in the club as well. Without blogging about my anticipation for the show and sharing it on social media, my extended family may not have made that connection. Pretty neat, right?

2. Everyone loves popcorn, beverages and Magic Boy.

During the last hour of each day at the show, the Hyland booth hosted a Happy Hour that also included high-energy raffle drawings and endless enjoyable interactions. At least once or twice a day, I ran into fellow HIMSS attendees who were just as much in awe of our booth activities – specifically, our resident magician.

If you did not catch him this year, I encourage you to block off some time on your calendar to witness the wonder of the Hyland booth at HIMSS18. We will save you a beer and some popcorn.

3. It is possible to have an acronym within an acronym.

I have worked within or on the periphery of the healthcare industry for more than 10 years now. I know our people have a love/hate relationship with and a propensity for acronyms. But in all my days, I have never seen an acronym within an acronym.

I am looking at you, MACRA. I knew what it entailed, but I cannot recall ever seeing it (mostly) spelled out. In case you are wondering, it is the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA). If someone hands me a Matryoshka doll instead of a business card at HIMSS18, I’m going to run.

4. Cybersecurity is nothing to take lightly.

As most of us are accustomed to living in a world of cloud-based data, connected health and more, we may have put the cart before the horse. Ransomware attacks are on the rise, and vulnerability for breaches is not going away.

We are incredibly lucky to experience such modern conveniences. However, we need a societal shift that demands our advances in healthcare are underpinned with matching – or, perhaps even greater – developments in security. My two top suggestions are: One, be proactive, not reactive; and two, security is everyone’s job.

5. GET OUT OF ORLANDO.

HIMSS is a big show and can get overwhelming. Luckily, just a short drive away, you will find charming neighborhoods boasting incredible local establishments owned and operated by talented, nationally recognized chefs.

Consider hosting your customer events at places like Luma on Park or The Rusty Spoon. I had the opportunity to dine with two of my colleagues on Tuesday night, and we bonded over a memorable meal in Winter Park. After a long, productive day at the conference, some laughs and shared stories over a glass of red and pasta was exactly what we needed to recharge for the next day.

Most importantly, thank you to our talented conference team, the wonderful people who made time to stop by the Hyland booth and our team who held down the fort back at our headquarters in Westlake this past week. HIMSS17 was exactly what I had hoped it would be.

Stay tuned as the HIMSS travel team and I share more throughout the next 12 months until we are in Las Vegas around this time next year for HIMSS18!

Laura Pegg

Laura Pegg

Laura M. Pegg is a public relations specialist at Hyland where she primarily supports healthcare, higher education and product. She has more than a decade of experience in public relations, corporate communications and public affairs. Laura earned a bachelor’s degree in public relations with concentrations in history and political science from Kent State University. She currently resides in downtown Cleveland where she is active in the DCA City Advocates Program and pursues her passions in photography, travel and culinary exploration.

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