August Festival Highlights Innovation, New Partnerships
From August 27-29, more than 2,000 healthcare entrepreneurs, investors and clinicians will gather for Health:Further's fourth annual industry gathering at Nashville's Music City Center.
A sister company of healthcare innovation fund Jumpstart Foundry, the international event is based on the premise that health is a human right, which must be supported affordably and sustainably.
"As Health:Further continues to grow, we continue to open a big tent to all healthcare communities and collaborators to foster an entrepreneurial spirit," said Marcus Whitney, CEO of Health:Further and co-founder of Jumpstart Foundry. "We've grown by recognizing that healthcare innovation requires a diverse group of operators, and the purpose of this is to bring all these perspectives together in one event."
Whitney said a lot of planning went into differentiating and improving 2018's event. "We've spent the past six months defining who the Health:Further community really is," said Whitney. "There are a lot of experience upgrades this year." That includes an overdue focus on clinicians, and partnerships with the American Nurses Association and the Physician Entrepreneur Summit.
Also on the roster is a daylong Clinician Innovator and Entrepreneur Track dedicated to exploring what happens when innovation sits in the hands that deliver it, discussing how to bring big ideas to market and lead innovative change as a clinician. Opening day will include several keynote speakers with more focused conversations and breakout sessions on the following days.
For financial managers, Health:Further and the Tennessee Healthcare Financial Management Association are offering a content track called "Growing the Margin: Innovation for Financial Sustainability." The program is designed to provide education and insight to healthcare financial managers and expose them to the trends that will change their organizations in the future. Additional topics for 2018 include Healthcare Informatics, Telehealth, Care Team Enablement and Cybersecurity.
Health:Further also recently announced a new partnership with HCA Healthcare. The Nashville-based global healthcare company will serve as presenting sponsor of the 2018 and 2019 Health:Further festivals.
At this year's festival, the collaboration will include an opening day event with HCA Healthcare CEO Milton Johnson and a pitch competition featuring HCA Healthcare CIO Marty Paslick as the head of an all-star panel of judges. Additionally, HCA Healthcare will host the festival's international delegations, welcoming them to their headquarters as part of their Health:Further experience.
The August event also will explore blockchain innovation through the Tokenizing Health Summit, where attendees will learn from those building the latest blockchain solutions for healthcare, connect with a coalition of leading blockchain experts, and network with like-minded technology leaders.
A serial entrepreneur, Whitney said a leading industry challenge surrounds interoperability and data sharing. "Today, a vast majority of records are in the cloud, but getting them from place to place and creating a shared experience continues to be a real issue," he said. "We'll continue to look at ways to improve outcomes and costs, because shared coordination across organizations is so important."
Whitney believes there's a tremendous opportunity on a federal level for promoting buyer interoperability, impacting care delivery models, improving workflow and innovation. "There are a lot of developments underway, and it's important to get it right," he said. "There are pressing issues that could be big victories."
Summit of the Southeast
Another notable highlight for 2018 is the second annual partnership with Tennessee's Health Information Management Systems Society, which will present the best in Healthcare IT thought leadership. August's festival also will feature the tenth TN HIMSS Summit of the Southeast, which will deliver thought-provoking content for attendees.
TN HIMSS president Tommy Lewis said the partnership is a win-win for both forward-thinking groups. "We're aligned really well with Health:Further's vision of having a health conference of this scale, and without high aspirations you won't be able to achieve it," Lewis said. "The main reason we joined was to focus on what we're good at, which is delivering great content and thought leadership to our members and guests."
With an annual growth rate of 15-20 percent, Tennessee's HIMSS chapter is the largest in the nation. Lewis said the festival helps attract new members previously unaware of the group's unique structure. "Some might only associate our broader organization with health tech, but our membership includes a broad range of professionals from executives and clinicians to hardcore IT developers and leaders. Our membership is as diverse as Nashville is."
Health:Further is also a part of the Nashville Is event, which includes the Live On The Green music series and 36|86, a conference event for Southeastern entrepreneurs. Discounted tickets are available online for those wishing to attend all events.
Bringing Innovation Home
"One of the things that makes Health:Further successful is that it's created by Nashville leadership and industry," said Whitney, noting the amount of healthcare innovation within Middle Tennessee. Globally, Nashville's healthcare industry generates more than $84 billion in revenue and more than 500,000 jobs.
"Nashville is not as well known as it should be for what its contributing to America's healthcare economy, so we need to make sure the rest of the country knows how much innovation happens here. It's really impressive when we all get in one big room, share what we've been working on and bring innovators from around the world into our own backyard," he concluded.