HIMSS21: A snapshot of themes and ideas from the live event in Las Vegas

The annual HIMSS conference had a very different look this year. Taking place in Las Vegas in early August, the event featured mandatory masks and vaccines as well as a notably smaller crowd. But, for those in attendance, there was plenty of excitement to finally meet contacts and colleagues in-person while absorbing the latest thinking in healthcare information technology (HIT) and patient services.

The ConnectiveRx team attended many sessions to glean how others in the industry are supporting patients on their medication journey. What did we hear? So much. There’s a crush of attention to topics around giving patients and providers the best daily experience possible.

That said, here are three conversations that really stuck with us as we returned home:

  1. The “medical home” was a common theme as HIT solution experts are looking for new ways to make personalized healthcare more available to patients at home between appointments. For example, Nemours Children’s Hospital has brought all their disparate digital applications together on one app to keep families updated on everything from medical appointments and dosage needs to everyday environmental factors that could exasperate preexisting conditions. Also in that vein, Providence Health is actively working to simplify recovery from major orthopaedic surgery through digital engagement tools.

  2. Thinking of patients as consumers is another major theme we heard. Healthcare systems are looking for the best possible “buying” experience for patients and are actively putting tools behind their strategies to bolster these experiences. Reframing patient encounters in this way signals to healthcare leaders they should utilize proactive, personalized, and intelligent engagement tactics. Underpinning that, effective data analytics are a great way to truly visualize the patient’s journey and any gaps in service. Looking at our company’s niche in the industry alone, this kind of data is driving personalization solutions that help pharma manufacturers truly quantify the results of their patient support, medication affordability, and adherence investments.

  3. The last day of HIMSS brought us a deeper look into the humanity of healthcare. This line of thinking is a significant focus of our purpose at ConnectiveRx so we always find it engaging. The closing day keynote was an inspirational one that discussed the profound, scientifically proven effects that small acts of service, gratitude, and the ability to be vulnerable can have on a person’s overall wellbeing. Coming from the perspective that individuals have at least some control over their physical and mental health, the speakers laid out the small and achievable ways we can take better care of ourselves by engaging more meaningfully with ourselves and those around us.

Bringing home the notion that humans need personal control to effectively navigate their medical journey, a final session included a healthcare industry expert turned chronic patient. Many of the treatment plans around her traumatic brain injury were accomplished because of her unique knowledge of the system, yet it was still a constant battle to receive the care she needed. She posed some questions: “Why aren’t the healthcare professionals working more directly with individual patients? Why are patients prevented from advocating on their own behalf ahead of the red tape? Why aren’t there more tools in place to help with the seemingly mundane details that are crucial to the patient’s recovery?”

A ConnectiveRx Teammate, Laura Blair, candidly shared a similar experience on a PharmaVoice magazine podcast this year. She explains how she had to use all her industry and systemic knowledge to proactively navigate a rare cancer diagnosis and worries this is something an average patient may not have the skills to do.

With these takeaways in mind, our team is jumping back into work with our EHR partners, pharma partners, and mobile solution partners to tackle issues around patient engagement and experience via technological as well as human support. Our purpose is to take the pain out of the prescription process and tackle any roadblocks that stand in a patient’s way to the medication they need. Contact us to learn more about patient support and hub services, affordability, or awareness and adherence solutions.

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