Additional HIMSS21 Options Offered to HIMSS Exhibitors After Cancellation of HIMSS20

As most of you know, we’ve been covering the cancellation of HIMSS20 since it rocked the health IT world right at the start of COVID-19.  For those following along at home, in the beginning HIMSS announced that there would be no refunds for HIMSS20 and no credits for HIMSS21 for HIMSS exhibitors.  HIMSS20 registrations for attendees was available as a credit for HIMSS21 as long as it was for the same person.

Shortly after saying there would be no exhibitor refunds, HIMSS offered conference exhibitors a partial credit towards HIMSS 2021 and HIMSS 2022 as follows:

25% of their total spend from HIMSS20 for HIMSS21 and HIMSS22! 15% to be applied to HIMSS21 and 10% to HIMSS22

For Startup and University Row Exhibitors, 100% of your total spend on HIMSS20 can be used for HIMSS21 (50%) and HIMSS22 (50%)

In response to this, many exhibitors expressed their frustration in the lack of refunds and credits by HIMSS and some said they wouldn’t be attending the HIMSS21 event unless HIMSS did much more to make things whole.  HIMSS committed to further remedies, but said they wouldn’t be able to announce those remedies until the insurance claim was settled.

We haven’t heard any details on the HIMSS insurance claim, but today HIMSS sent out an email to an exhibitor with the following additional financial options for HIMSS20 exhibitors:

20% cash refund, 30% credit for HIMSS21, and 10% credit for HIMSS22


50% credit for HIMSS21 and 10% credit for HIMSS22

For this exhibitor, they’re essentially moving from a 25% credit over the next two HIMSS to a 60% credit over the next two HIMSS with a partial cash refund option.  The email to this exhibitor doesn’t mention any change to the 50% force majeure clause for HIMSS21 cancellation.  Also, we’re still looking into if this same option is going to be offered to all HIMSS20 exhibitors or not.  It would surprise us if they were doing some sort of tiered approach to refunds and credits, but we’re still checking to see if this applies across the board or not since a number of exhibitors we talked to hadn’t gotten this email yet.

UPDATE: We heard from HIMSS that this credit doesn’t apply across the board to all exhibitors, but we have heard from a few exhibitors that have received this option.  I’ve asked HIMSS for clarification on their overall approach to all exhibitors and will update the article as we get more info.

If you’ve heard from HIMSS on what they’re offering you, will it be enough to make up for the cancellation?  Let us know in the comments what your reaction is to these additional credits and partial cash refund options that you may have received.

Needless to say, it’s going to be a very different HIMSS conference in 2021.  Not to mention HIMSS’s move to August 2021 in Las Vegas is going to make for a different event.  What’s amazing is that even if HIMSS21 attendance is 10-20k people, it will be a great event for many who attend.  However, that’s probably a disaster for HIMSS since their pricing is based on a 40-50k person event.

About the author

John Lynn

John Lynn

John Lynn is the Founder of, 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.