Depth in an EMR Conference

I’ve been having a good time today at the Health Tech Next Generation conference in San Francisco. They have some really interesting people from healthcare IT that are here. For me as an EMR and healthcare IT blogger, it’s a lot of fun to be able to “talk shop” with a bunch of HIT people. However, I can’t help but sit here wondering where the doctors are. Certainly there’s a place for an HIT industry insider conference, but I can’t say I’ve ever seen a true EMR conference focused on doctors, practice managers and actual users of the EMR. This wasn’t the intent of this conference, so it’s nothing against Health Tech Next Generation. I just think there’s an opportunity to create a conference focused on just EHR and provide unbiased information for doctors.

This really started hitting home for me when I was preparing to moderate a panel on EMR 101. The challenge was quite clear. I had an hour to try and cover EMR 101. Really? That’s bascially IMPOSSIBLE!

Here’s my broad list of what should be covered in an EMR 101:
To EMR or Not to EMR
EMR Selection
EMR Implementation
EHR Stimulus/Meaningful Use

I’m sure there are other areas that could be interesting. However, this would be a good start to get doctors ready to select and implement an EMR. Or at least make an educated decision to go with EMR or not.

The question is how do you get enough doctors together at an EMR conference. That part I haven’t figured out, but I’m interested in your ideas. I’d love to partner with a provider organization to create an event like this. I’m talking about an upfront unbiased approach to EHR. No kool-aid drinking talks allowed. Just a deep dive into the real details of selecting and implementing an EHR. I’m sure the EHR vendors would be happy to exhibit at the event.

What do you think? Would an EMR conference like this do well? I think it’s missing in the industry, but I’m not sure how you put it together properly.

About the author

John Lynn

John Lynn

John Lynn is the Founder of the, a network of leading Healthcare IT resources. The flagship blog, Healthcare IT Today, contains over 13,000 articles with over half of the articles written by John. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 20 million times.

John manages Healthcare IT Central, the leading career Health IT job board. He also organizes the first of its kind conference and community focused on healthcare marketing, Healthcare and IT Marketing Conference, and a healthcare IT conference,, focused on practical healthcare IT innovation. John is an advisor to multiple healthcare IT companies. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can be found on Twitter: @techguy.


  • I am putting together just such a conference you have described in your blog. The most difficult part is to get doctors to come. The EMR Summit in Freehold, NJ we are hosting is not vendor biased. In fact ,we are hoping to give CME credits for physicians. I want a lot of dentists and chiropractos to come but there is neither EMR software nor much stimulus money available to them. It is unfair to dentists and chiropractors.

  • Rama,
    I sent you an email about your conference. Did you get it? I’m thinking of a trip to the east coast (NY/NJ/DC). So, I might just be able to make it happen.

  • John … have you reached out to your local or state Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) organization?

    Might have a session for the MGMA member practice managers one Saturday … then have them bring their docs back the next Saturday.

    I like the idea of a high level presentation that doesn’t get clogged up with marketing and ARRA promotion which might happen if a REC sponsored such an open program.

    The national MGMA conference is in Las Vegas … 23-26 October. Haven’t checked their presentation program … but bet they would welcome your involvement either to present EMR101 in a 2 or 3 hour session if 1 hour doesn’t work … or to moderate an EMR adoption panel.

  • Hey Don,
    I’ve thought about using my local medical association, but ideally I’d do something bigger than just a local event. Although, as I’ve thought more about this, an EHR roadshow of sorts that does a ton of local events is likely the best format to do it.

    I actually just got my MGMA information in the mail. So, I’ll definitely be at MGMA. I think it will be a great event for me. I wanted to go last year and it was just bad timing. This year will be fun.

  • John,
    Check We are working on just such conference. This conference is desgined with an International flavor and all tracks will be presented in Spanish and English. In addition to the topics that you can see by going to this website we are planning on donating any proceeds to pay for scholarships for students interested in the healthcare field.

  • Jose,
    I love the idea of doing it in both English and Spanish. I think that will serve the needs of the area where you’re holding the conference. I hope it goes well and is a great success.

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