March 9, 2018 Editorial Team in Big DataFeaturedMedeAnalytics

HIMSS18: Top Trends and Themes

Another HIMSS18 conference has come and gone and we finally have a chance to sit back, relax and reflect on this past week. From the constant social chatter, major industry announcements to hours spent connecting with some of the best and brightest in healthcare, this year’s HIMSS was definitely one for the books. As we look back, here are some of the trends and themes that were top of mind throughout the week:

“Get to the cloud. Run to the cloud” 

HIMSS18 kicked off with a keynote address from former Alphabet executive chairman and Google CEO Eric Schmidt who laid out a secret formula for healthcare innovation: data + cloud + powerful networks + reinforcement learning = significant improvements in care. Could this formula change the future of healthcare? We’ll be keeping an eye out to see how Schmidt’s talk inspires the industry over the next few months.

CMS & The White House Put Interoperability on Center Stage

The healthcare industry has long struggled with data sharing with various stakeholders trying to move it forward. Now, CMS and the White House are proposing a solution. “We’re changing to a new era of empowered consumers. We are about putting patients first and making sure patients have access to their healthcare data. You’re hearing that from the White House too,” CMS Administrator Seema Verma shared during a HIMSS presentation. The new initiative, MyHealthEData, aims to get healthcare information into the hands of patients faster and will ensure that patients receive a copy of their EHR electronically via program interfaces or APIs. CMS is also taking steps to ensure hospitals are not involved in data blocking. Will both CMS and the White House push this initiative forward? Time will tell.

Big Tech Comes to Healthcare

Over the past few months, tech companies have been making headlines for their efforts in breaking into healthcare. At HIMSS, this trend continued as Google announced a new tool to help health institutions pull together important data in an effort to nudge the industry forward when it comes to the lack of interoperability between companies. Google Cloud is trying to address this by launching a new API that can ingest all the important health-care data types and is already announcing partnerships with hospital groups, like Stanford School of Medicine.

Patients are #1

At the end of the day, healthcare is all about patients and helping them get the quality care and support they need. HIMSS supported this belief by offering complimentary passes for qualifying patients, patient advocates and caregivers. From the CMS initiative, to new experience platforms, patients were clearly on the top of everyone’s minds. As consumers look to get more involved in their own health, this focus will only increase in the coming months and years.

HIMSS18 came and went in a flash but this year’s conference highlighted one thing: healthcare innovation is top of mind. The slow-moving space is now being inundated by top names in various industries who are looking to make a difference in healthcare quality and costs.

Thinking that AI is missing from this list? Check out our earlier blog dedicated to all things AI with commentary from Tyler Downs, our chief technology officer. Not able to make it to HIMSS or didn’t have enough time to schedule a meeting with us? Contact us here: