A Week of Women at #HIMSS19

Thanks to Ilana Garon (@IlanaGaron) who collaborated with me on this article.

The past year has brought changes across many industries in gender equity and representation. Healthcare in particular is an industry wherein we continuously work towards the ideals of #BalanceforBetter. More diversity and inclusion creates a better work environment and a better economy. In healthcare it is particularly important, since underrepresented groups in leadership have a higher risk of negative health outcomes.

With that in mind, I sat down with Ilana Garon and went through the panels at HIMSS about women’s health, as well as those with women speakers. Here are a few sessions we recommend for #WomeninHIT at HIMSS19, which this year will include lots of great options for celebrating the work of women in healthcare. (Full disclosure: We are including some of the events at which Janae will be speaking.)

  1. Monday, 8:35- 8:45 am: Keynote: Empathy by Design. You can start the conference with empathy. Keynote speaker Adrienne Boissy is an expert in transforming healthcare organizations to improve both care and mental health. This short keynote can guide our view of the conference, answering questions like how we can create a better environment for patients and physicians, and what that would look like within the framework of information technology. Her views about operational recognition of empathy are important in an industry where so much dissatisfaction exists.
  2. Monday, 3:45-4:30pm: Putting It All Together: Unlocking the Potential of Tomorrow. Aashima Gupta, Director of Global Healthcare solutions at Google Cloud, will discuss the importance of interoperability and evolving technology in improving patient experience, care, and revenue generation, as well as analyzing remaining data gaps. In a very technology-focused conference, this session promises an overarching look at the benefits and challenges of using data within the healthcare ecosystem. (Ilana is interested in this panel because she is excited about all things Google-related and has a brother that works there.)
  3. Tuesday, 3:00-4:00pm: Robotics and Children. Ayanna Howard, PhD, MS, is presenting with Don Woodlock about the potential that robotics has to improve the lives of children with disabilities. She will talk about the challenges and opportunities in using robots and machine learning, both with clinicians and with children. Janae and Ilana are both fascinated by the tools currently being developed to help children be more connected and supported within healthcare, and Howard and Woodlock have done an enormous amount of work to support their data infrastructure.
  4. Tuesday, 3:00-3:45pm: The Women in HealthIT Meetup will convene at the HIMSS Spot. Janae will join in discussing what women are doing in Healthcare IT to promote other women.
  5. Wednesday, 10:35am: Creating a Connected Pregnancy. This is a great presentation for anyone interested in innovative tools to track and understand pregnancy symptoms. (Janae gave birth in November, and during her pregnancy, she constantly wished for a more robust toolset for this purpose.) The session is led by Oren Oz. This session we found through the power of social media. Janae was approached by Nuvo Health on Twitter, and they noticed her pregnancy. When she publicly asked for session recommendations, Nuvo responded with a session that appealed to her personal interests. Although this panel doesn’t feature a female presenter, Nuvo demonstrated an impressive use of online social media to identify user’s personal interests. They are also have a strong focus on women’s health, so we are including them.
  6. Wednesday, 4:00-5:00pm: New Horizons in Patient Directed Exchange. A fellow Utah HIMSS board member and influential player in Health IT, Teresa Rivera, will speak about some of the work of the Utah Health Information Exchange. She will speak about the importance of patient directed data exchange. Ilana points out that if we had a dollar for every patient who is frustrated with their health records…well, we could fund a lot of patient led initiatives. Riversa will tackle the question of what health information exchanges can do to enable that work. She is an empathetic leader who excels at balancing multiple healthcare stakeholder interests to drive value.
  7. Thursday, 1:30-2:30pm: The Women in Interoperability panel is a powerhouse of influence. IBM, Audacious Inquiry, HIMSS, and the Sequoia project are just a few of the groups represented, who are undertaking the challenging work of making patient data flow at the speed of the life. Christel Anderson, Christina Caraballo, Didi Davis and Judith Murphy, LFHIMSS, RN, are truly some of the most influential women working in healthcare technology today.
  8. Thursday, 3:30-4:30pm: Qlik Healthcare Booth. Janae will join Dalton Ruer and Joe Warbington in the Qlik healthcare booth. If trends continue how they are today, suicide will be one of the leading causes of death within the next 15 years. Physician suicide rates are rising and physicians have less autonomy and more at-work frustration than ever before, it’s imperative that we make a change. The discussion at this booth will cover a small part of our work on the Sharp Index, a metric that uses predictive tools and data to save physicians’ lives. You can register for the event here. And use the map to find the booth here.
  1. Friday, 8:30-10:15 am: Healing from Within: Leading Change, Inspiring Action. Susan DeVore, CEO of Premier, a leader in healthcare improvement, will discuss how the industry of healthcare is becoming more personalized. Attendees will learn more about Premier’s efforts to maximize efficiency and value-based care, and about DeVore’s own experiences and challenges as a woman working in healthcare over the past three decades.

As you plan for HIMSS19 or other conferences what types of sessions do you look for?

About the author

Janae Sharp

Janae Sharp

Healthcare as a Human Right. Physician Suicide Loss Survivor.
Janae writes about Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, Data Analytics, Engagement and Investing in Healthcare. Founder of the Sharp Index.
twitter: @coherencemed