Finding #BlueButton at #HIMSS14

I am having trouble believing HIMSS 14 is just a few days away. I am really looking forward to getting out of Georgia’s erratic weather and into Florida’s warmer temps. At least Orlando weather isn’t erratic. Check out the forecast:


While I don’t think I’ll have time to lounge by the pool, I do anticipate having some fun playing tennis with a few #HITchicks early Monday morning. I hope Orlando’s daily rain shower holds off until later that afternoon.

I’m also looking forward to the Siemens Media Breakfast, a Lunch and Learn with ePatient Dave, HISTalkapalooza, the #HITsm tweetup, a session on health information and the Disney experience, the Georgia HIMSS networking reception, and of course the New Media Meetup (where you can meet many of your favorite bloggers).

As I’ve been so focused on Blue Button news lately, I thought I’d see how many HIMSS sessions will be devoted to the topic. A quick search at yields three:


The last session seems the most consumer-friendly, and right up my alley based on its objective of covering the current state of Blue Button, and its general description:

“Join experts from the from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) in an interactive session to learn more about several major developments in the world of consumer and patient engagement enabled by technology, and how you can participate. This session will cover policy initiatives, standards development, and resources available to members of the private and public sectors from ONC and our many collaborators.”

In other Blue Button news, it appears that “Blue Button healthcare technologies [are] primed to explode in [the] private sector,” according to a brief article at This is basically a rehash of last week’s news that several pharmacy associations and large retailers like Kroger, Walgreens and CVS are working to “standardize their prescription data based on Blue Button policies,” but it serves as a good reminder that Blue Button started out as a VA initiative. Is it just me or does it seem that much of today’s healthcare IT started out via government development or government mandate/incentive?

Feel free to drop me a line if you know of more Blue Button-related activities at HIMSS, or have other interesting events you think I (and my readers) should check out next week.

About the author

Jennifer Dennard

Jennifer Dennard

As Social Marketing Director at Billian, Jennifer Dennard is responsible for the continuing development and implementation of the company's social media strategies for Billian's HealthDATA and Porter Research. She is a regular contributor to a number of healthcare blogs and currently manages social marketing channels for the Health IT Leadership Summit and Technology Association of Georgia’s Health Society. You can find her on Twitter @JennDennard.


  • Looks like I’m going to need to bring an umbrella. I always forget to plan for that since we don’t worry about that here in Las Vegas. Thanks for the warning.

  • Actually it sounds like the blue button marketing campaign is dead on arrival..

    HIMSS was supposed to be the big go live but most people who actually work in the industry realized that it was just an unfunded ONC marketing campaign and failed once everyone saw that the emperor wasn’t wearing any clothes.

  • Former ONC Intern, you make “marketing campaign” sound like a bad thing. From what I could tell at HIMSS during the ONC demo of the new Blue Button Connector site, that is a big part of it, which they feel will ultimately draw developers to use open source BB code. They were very forthcoming in stating that BB is not a panacea for consumer/patient engagement, but rather a hopefully great way to get the word out about what health data is, why patients should want to control their own, and how easy it’s becoming to do that.

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