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45,000+ people will be descending on Orange County Florida for HIMSS 2019. It is an Opportunity Rich Environment for those who are prepared. Find out what industry veteran David Muntz recommends to get the most out of the event.


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 Welcome to this week in Health it where we discuss the news information and emerging thought with leaders from across the healthcare industry. This is episode number 56. I. Today the incomparable David Mu and I will discuss building your game plan for Yes, no comparison. In fact, I got an invite today to an event that said, come here David Mu, you're like the draw of the event that I was invited to.

Oh my gosh. Are you sure it wasn't inoperable instead of incomparable ? No, I, I definitely get a couple people and be in the background. We'll, whatever we do, so. Yeah. This podcast is brought to you by Health Lyrics, helping to build agile, efficient, and effective health. It Let's talk visit health to schedule your free consultation.

My name is Bill Russell, recovering healthcare, c i o, writer and advisor with the pre, previously mentioned health lyrics. Alright. I've been told, I, now I'm actually off. This is, uh, this is part of my three week break and I, I got about, yes. Two weeks into it and I couldn't help myself. I read your article this morning and I thought, you know what?

My listeners need to have the, the, um, the benefit of, of that article and preparing for him. It's 'cause it's just around the corner. It's a couple weeks. Oh, yes. So I, I thought I would, uh, come out of my break. I'm casual today. You're casual today. Um, and I, I'm actually off again next week. And then the following week, week we, we kick off, uh, the podcast for the new year.

And we've got a lot of new things and exciting things, uh, that we're going to be doing a little different. Got a. A bunch of new guests. I've sent out a bunch of invitations. Wonderful. Yes. So I'm, I'm really looking forward to it. But today we're gonna focus on one thing and that's preparing for hims. Do you remember your first HIMSS and what your impression was of that first himss?

Well, sadly I do. Um, I actually, when I went to himss, uh, I went to a meeting, it was associated with the a h A at the time, and it was a very small group and there may have been five or 600 people. Concrete floors with a few people who were smart enough to bring carpet. And it was just remarkable. And to see it grow, uh, like it is, has just been overwhelming.

Nobody predicted that. How, how many years ago was that? Are you, are you able to say, or? It was, it wasn't years. It was decades ago. Wow. And so it was truly remarkable. And so I've been excited, you know, there are doing great things for the industry and, uh, I T professionals are advantaged significantly by it.

You go from that 500, this, this, this time around. They're anticipating what? About 40,000 ish people? 45 plus they put the plus on there. So just, just in case people wa you know, walkups on that thing. Exactly. I, I remember my first hims and, uh, I was not prepared for it. I walked in the door as a, a newly minted c i o.

Somebody said, well, you know, it's in Vegas. Why don't you just head over there? It's no big deal. And, uh, it is a big deal. I. I, I was completely overwhelmed. I was, um, uh, you know, I, I just, I, I think I did everything wrong. I didn't really have a good game plan. People saw me and they grabbed me and pulled me all over the place, and, and you, you just sort of end up, end up being washed around.

I think, um, I, I, I don't have this calculated, but I do remember one time at New Orleans I did 35,000 steps in a day and, okay. I, I'm pretty sure that five of my top 10 step days in my life have been at HIMS events. So, uh, so one of the things you talked about early on, I list things highlighted. That I think will really help people and uh, you know, it is an opportunity rich environment, but here's some of the things that you say.

I'd love for you to elaborate on some, some of 'em. So you say make appointments now with your key vendors. Oh, absolutely. What's the benefit of that? Yeah, the, you know, there's rarely a time where you're gonna have the people whom you are doing business with or those with whom you wanna do business all together in one place, and they're gonna bring all of their high level execs.

And so it's an opportunity to really get to the kind of resources that you want. They often bring their technical support staffs, their sales support people. They're talking about current as well as thinking about and showing the future, and it's a real opportunity. And so I used to think of HIMSS as an opportunity to do all the meetings that I wanted to have, not just what the vendors wanted to have at a locale that was common to all of us.

Make sure they brought all the people that they needed to answer the questions in real time. And so you can get to answers more quickly. And then if you're shopping for something, you can do a comparison very quickly between vendors and, oh, it's all fresh. Instead of having that ice cube effect that happens when you meet somebody this week.

And then two weeks before the vendor, uh, competitor shows up. Yeah, I agree. I agree. I think that's one of the biggest benefits is having all the vendors. I, there was a couple meetings where I brought multiple vendors together and it's mm-hmm. , you know, it's, it's a lot easier to do that at HIMSS 'cause they're all there Sure.

To, you know, get one of their, um, one of their very expensive booths where you, uh, get a room and go back there and have those conversations. So that's, that's, that's phenomenal. And if you don't set up those meetings ahead of time, you do wander a lot. There's. Oh yeah. There's so many parallel events going on.

Right. And it's just, um, so second thing you have here is, uh, meet, meet with Starbridge advisors. So that's just a, a little advertising, but, but are you wrote this article from a vendor perspective or from a more of a, a buyer perspective? Or is it, it it can really work for both. Right. I actually was thinking about it from a c I o perspective.

'cause that's still my mindset. Um, and so it was as a C I O or as somebody who's working for a C I O, this is what you should do. And I was not thinking about it from a vendor except from the selfish perspective of wanting to get to meet people who were not familiar with Star and what we do. And, and you know, one of the things of meeting with Starbridge or even meeting with Health Erics is it, it it, this is a phenomenal networking event.

Um, yes, it's, and it's also a phenomenal training event. I don't know if you, I'm sure you've done this 'cause we we're both pretty passionate about training the next generation. So, um, I would take some of my, uh, some of the people I was mentoring or some of the people that were part of my organization, and I would walk them around and I would introduce them to people.

And uh, it was an opportunity for me to say, Hey, this is a former c i o of the year and you know, this is, you know, this is my VP of fill in the blank and this person, you know, wants to be a C I O someday. And we'd have drinks and, and talk and those kind things. It is a great opportunity to do as well.

Yeah, I faab actually, I think that is the greatest part I think of it. As both the business transaction activities associated with the vendors and also learning. And the other thing that you get from wandering around, even if you don't have a plan, and I strongly recommend that you create one, is that you can see themes on the displays themself that give you some insight into what the vendors are thinking about.

And that helps you with your strategy and tactics as you're going forward, helps you figure out what's real, what's, uh, what's nascent and how much, uh, effort you should put at doing things yourself. And you know, it spurs innovation so, And, and, and practicing what we preach, you know, here's the, here's the HIMSS app, and I've marked all, all my, my agenda's on there, my favorites, the, uh, the exhibitors I want to track down.

It is a really, it's a really good app. It's great app. For, for building that out and to find the people that you wanna, you wanna find. So, uh, next thing you say is, you know, get to the him spectacular must see opening session. Uh, last year was the, um, oh, Eric Schmidt talked about cloud computing in, uh, talked about cloud computing in, in healthcare.

And I remember him saying, you know, if you haven't, if you're not at the cloud now, run to it. Sprint to it. Yeah. And some things this year's, um, Gotta look at this. This year's is, is a phenomenal panel discussion. Oh gosh, yes. Uh, will consumer directed exchange disrupt the healthcare marketplace? And you have Anish Chopra, who's, who's been on the show and phenomenal, fabulous.

Oh yes. Karen DeSalvo, Mike Levitt, and, uh, CIMA Verma, I mean, oh. Any one of those people could be the keynote in and of themselves, but having all four of them on the stage, I can, I, I'm, I'm really looking forward to that. And it's a great idea to go. Plus it gets you so excited and jazzed up and you're gonna need to be energetic to survive the week.

Yeah. 'cause if you do three 30,000 step days in a row, you're gonna, you're gonna need some help. Yes. Uh, visit the events link to see how you can take advantage of networking events. And I'm gonna click on the link, um, if yous on the, the Bridge Starbridge advisors. And, uh, he has the links in that site as well.

So there's the awards gala, there's receptions, uh, chapter events. Uh, I know that the, uh, SoCal Hys North Northern California hymns. I've been invited to both of those. So the, the chapter events are there. Wow. Uh, there's a career fair. Um, have you ever been a part of that? Have you ever seen that? Is that I, I, yes.

I've never, I've never stopped in on that, so, yeah. And actually I'm participating this year. Doing an hour talk on, uh, what's happening in the market, what should people do to prepare for the future. And it's a real opportunity and I appreciate that. Uh, I was asked to do that, so I'm looking for having that talk.

So that'll be worthwhile just, just to hear you talk about the state of where things are at. Oh, well, the, the thing that's exciting though is, I mean, the thing that you and I love, I think. Is that you see the enthusiasm of the people in the next generation, the generation after that, and as they're progressing in their careers.

It's really remarkable. So this is a chance to give back because, you know, I went to sit at the knees of and listen to what they had to say and help to me figure out how to navigate my, my career path. Yep. Absolutely. And, uh, it is a great industry that way in that we, uh, we help each other, uh, along the way.

Wow. Uh, you also highlight the tracks. So there are, I, I can't count 'em here, but clinical informatics track. Uh, supply chain, uh, digital connected health, consumerization of health, culture and care, cybersecurity data science, uh, disruptive care models, uh, grand societal cha challenges. Hmm. I'll have to check into what that is.

Health informatics education. There's, there's a whole bunch of tracks. And you also talk about earning CE credits to keep your certification up to date. Yes. Talk about, talk about those track. I mean, there's, there's so many things. This is where the app really comes. To track down those things that are, um, that are gonna be of value to you and starring them to make sure you don't miss them.

Yeah, and you know, people have a tendency to pick a track and stay in it. My recommendation is to pick several tracks or multiples and go see things that you aren't necessarily familiar with to try to figure out how to align what it is that you're doing with what's happening in the parallel tracks that are, uh, occurring.

And so, One of the things that we did when we went as a group, and you referenced the fact that you sometimes took a team, is we would look across the tracks, try to figure out who is gonna go represent us in each one of the different tracks. Then we would come back after the meeting, after the conference was done, and do a post event training session where we would talk about how we've been challenged or provoke into new kinds of thinking.

And that's invaluable. So, The idea is go to see somebody who may not agree with you or go to see a topic that you're not familiar with, and it's eye-opening, uh, in every case. And the idea is if you are provoked, you're gonna either reaffirm your position or you're gonna modify it. And either outcome is a positive.

Uh, so you can't lose by going to somebody who doesn't. To see something that you may not agree with. Yeah. One of the things I like to do in these tracks is look for best practices. There's Oh yeah. A lot of health systems that are gonna be there. And you're gonna say, I've heard people say, well, you know, cloud computing is nowhere.

Well, and then you go to one of these tracks and you sit there and go, but wait a minute. This health system and this health system have gotten this far. And hopefully that just. You know, and AI is the same way. Blockchain is another, I mean, there's a whole bunch of different technologies and also workflow and integration and uh, clinical decision support.

There's , the tracks are endless. Um, but one of the things I like to do is just find those systems that are doing amazing things and, uh, you know, one of the things I did. After one of the sessions was I went up and talked to the person. I said, would you be willing to have my team of clinical informaticists talk to your team?

And, you know, we exchanged cards and a couple weeks later we had our two teams from uh, two fairly large health systems having a conversation. So then we, we took that, I took that track in what I saw and expanded that to, um, to really benefit the entire team. 'cause you can't take everybody from your health system to him.

Yeah. Crazy. Yeah. But, you know, professional development is a great motivator. And the thing about hims is it's a referee activity. So not everybody who's gotten there, and to your point, it is the best practices who have made it through the siv, uh, in order to be able to present. And so, you know, by definition, almost everybody is presenting either a good, better or best practice.

Yeah, so one of your things is, uh, you have, you know, reserve some personal time. I get that. Appreciate that you have steady yourself and walk around the vendor floor. Okay. So this was probably the most overwhelming thing for me. Um, I felt like I was walking around, you know those, that old i n g commercial where you walked around with a number over your head?

Yeah. Like, this is my number I need for retirement. I felt like I, people would look at me and go, they, they'd see I was a potential buyer from a health system. They'd do the math. And then as, as Judy said, at, uh, you know, some of these events she goes to, she feels like a piece of meat. I. And if you don't have a plan on that floor, it can feel pretty overwhelming.

What, what, what do you, what advice do you give for potentially new CIOs or existing CIOs or just anyone within it of how to work the floor effectively? Yeah. You know, I, what I do is I take the floor map just like you've taken the schedule and I circle vendors that I wanna see, and then I draw the shortest distance between all of the vendors.

To make sure I see it, but I also make sure I look around because it's the things I'm not aware of that sometimes have a greater impact than the things I am thinking about. So, you know, again, this is gonna challenge your status quo and get you to think differently. But that would be the, uh, one thing I would tell you.

And I would also suggest that you remember that everybody working those booths, Are under a lot of stress and you know, everybody said, you know, they're always looking for this, the red c i o badge trying to grab you. And it's like, well that's understandable, but you should also be respectful of the fact they're there to provide you education information and do, uh, your bidding if you will, to make sure that you get the most out of the show.

And I try to thank everybody who's worked in a booth because at one point in my career, I was on the other side of the booth. Yeah, I've worked, I've worked a boot before. That is a, yeah, that is a really hard thing to do, to stand all day and Yes, and, and be there and, you know, and be ready when somebody does walk up.

It's, uh, that is, that is a lot of work. Um, let's see. So, yeah, I mean, you know, you talk about, you talk about the vendors, you talk about, uh, policy makers. There will be, and we've mentioned some of them, there's gonna be some policy makers there. I think one of the things people also may miss, if you don't look closely enough is there's, I mean, there's the tracks, but there's also a ton of presentations on the floor itself.

Mm-hmm. . You know, the, uh, security vendors are are pretty, I mean, you'll see 15, 20, a hundred different, uh, presentations on the floor, but security is one of those that there's probably gonna be literally, probably a hundred security presentations on the floor itself. You'll have people with microphones and a screen, places for people to down.

Those be valuable. I think people should eye. I texted you this morning and asked you to do this and I really appreciate it. I on schedule in the couple of minutes. Uh, so there's a sort of an approved social media hashtag list that HIMSS has put out there, and I, I love the fact that you, Russ, and Sue came up with a handful that you guys are, uh, following.

Um, let, let's highlight some of those. So what are the ones that you, you're, you're gonna keep an eye on? Actually, I don't have my list here. I'd appreciate it if you could. Oh, sure. Well, I mean, there, there's, there's some great ones, right? So women in h i t Oh, yes. So Sue's gonna, sue's gonna be following that one.

Um, and, and that's, that's a great way, there's gonna be a lot of, uh, events specifically for, uh, women at this, uh, at this event. You'll get to interact with, with great leaders like Sue. Uh, h i t venture is also interesting. You Oh, yes. You know, the, all the startups and the new ventures, that's another fascinating thing.

There's areas now where you can walk around and, and I think the booths are a little less expensive and, uh, a little, a little more modest. But you can, you can hit, hit up these people who are brilliant people. I mean, they're brilliant and, and brave and courageous, I mean, They've, they have a passion.

They're smart, and they're building new things that are going to change the way we, uh, practice medicine in a couple years. So, h i t venture Engage for health is patient engagement. Here's your picks. H i t security always top of mind, uh, government, h i t empower, h i t uh, is about interoperability and I, I think that's just gonna continue to be a, a huge topic.

um, I, I'll be curious to see how far fire has come over the, you know, every year. It, it was pretty nascent about two years ago, and then last year it felt like it really got some momentum. It'll be interesting to see how much more it's progressed this year. I, I, I like watching that. It's huge, by the way.

They've gotten to the stage now where you have to have a formal process to make changes, so it's become mature. Um, which is really important and it offers an alternative that all of us need to be very familiar with. So we need to learn to speak fire. And that's gonna be, and that's gonna be transformative.

Uh, aim to innovate. H i t works healthy, uh, healthy margins. Healthcare, finance, strategy. Uh, you know, these are just some of the things, um, you know, on social media, you can follow this thing. There's HIMSS tv, they're gonna be broadcasting a handful of things. So even if you don't go to the event, there's a way to benefit from the event.

And, uh, You know, one of the things I used to do was get as many of the presentations as possible, and, uh, my admin hated when I came back from HIMSS because I would hand her a thousand things and say, okay, you know, you need to sort these by clinical informatics and by analytics and, and make sure that the leaders get these presentations.

And, um, and you know, there's just a, there's a ton of great things out there. Any final words on, on HIMS prep for the person who's going? I would look and see what the common themes are on the 2019 predictions, you know, such things as augmented intelligence, cybersecurity, the things that are always at the top of the list, and try to look for the people who are leading.

I'd also, uh, watch out for all the venture capitalists to be wandering the floor and see what they're investing in. And, you know, it never hurts to track somebody who's, uh, who has enough money, they wanna spend it on, uh, On the possibilities of the future. So I think, uh, trying to follow those things would be important as well.

Absolutely. By the way is to, the one thing I can't tell you enough is, uh, to repeat, and you said it takes some complete contemplative time. You're gonna, senses are gonna be overwhelmed and it helps to take a little breather at the end of the day or in the middle of the day and say, am I making progress against my goals for the meeting?

To think about what it is that you've seen, figure how to put that into the next few. And, uh, see how that's gonna make sure that you're meeting your objectives. Yeah. And, and, uh, taking that time before you even leave your hotel room and writing down if, if I, you know, these are the things I must do.

Another way of doing that, I, uh, somebody gave me a, a trick, which is to say, if I get to the end of this day and I haven't done these things, I'm gonna regret it. That tends to highlight. I need to make sure I make that networking event. I need to make sure I see that person's presentation. Um, make, you know, it's big rock, small rocks thing.

Make sure you do the, the ones that you absolutely, um, will regret not doing if you don't do 'em. So, Well, I'm gonna be there. I'm gonna be doing a show. I'm gonna be doing multiple shows. I'm gonna be recording as many, uh, CIOs as I can get. Uh, if you see me, I'm ready to record. I, I record on my, uh, iPhone. I have my, uh, my la mics with me, and I'm gonna be grabbing as many, uh, CIOs, uh, and influencers as I possibly can.

Uh, I might grab some people right off the stage and see how it goes and, uh, you know, just capture as many of those conversations as I can. And we'll get started into, uh, next year's, uh, season. So David, thank thanks very much for, uh, coming on the show. Uh, apologize to your team for being two minutes late for your next meeting.

And, uh, thanks. Thanks for, uh, thanks for doing this. Alright, and to the listeners, make sure that they follow you. That's critically important. Yes. Follow the show, follow us. Uh, we are, uh, we're, we're excited to, to be able to, to do this for, uh, for the industry. It's awesome. Thanks.


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