Although many individuals in the press believed that HIMSS15 would be a huge event for health IT, it seems that the Health Information Management Systems Society might have downplayed just how successful this year's conference was. According to Applied Radiology, HIMSS15 opened with 41,044 attendees in Chicago, easily breaking 2014's record on the first day of the conference. By the end of the event, the number of attendees had increased to 43,129.
In addition to the amount of health IT providers and professionals roaming the halls of McCormick Place, other records were also broken at HIMSS15 this year. According to the source, more than 1,300 companies were represented at HIMSS15, and the total square footage (60,000 net square feet) also beat out last year's numbers.
HIMSS15 marks major changes in health IT
Perhaps more so than in years past, HIMSS15 had clear objectives and nationwide goals that were discussed at length from many leaders in the industry, and there was a sense that everyone was getting on the same page when it comes to patient privacy, interoperability and governmental regulations.
"Through education and thought leadership, we have equipped attendees to return to their care setting to play an active transformation role in changing health and healthcare for the better through the best use of IT," Carla Smith, executive vice president of HIMSS, explained to Applied Radiology.
One of the reasons this year's event broke so many records could be because in many ways, health IT is becoming much more technologically advanced and, according to some, reaching a tipping point. HIMSS15 allowed many people from all facets of the health IT sector to see in person what kinds of innovations will continue to shape medical care over the next few years, according to Diagnostic and Interventional Cardiology.
Of course, mobile health is one of the biggest factors moving the healthcare industry toward innovation, but the HIMSS15 Interoperability Showcase and focus on vendor neutral archiving technology also indicated that there was a clear need for providers to share information safely, seamlessly and securely.
The most innovative healthcare information technology tools, including electronic medical records and vendor neutral archives, can help the medical community address the evolving needs of the patient population. With HIMSS15 breaking so many records this year, it's clear that health IT is moving in a new direction towards innovation and interoperability.