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9 HIMSS Attendee Survival Tips

Can you believe that HIMSS Annual Conference in Orlando is almost here? Get ready for the biggest healthcare information management event of the year, filled with extensive engaging content, leadership insight and plenty of walking. To prep for this whirlwind conference, let's focus on HIMSS survival tips during the hectic conference.

  1. Download the App-The HIMSS Annual Conference mobile app (available in both the Apple App Store and Google Play) will give you a snapshot of educational sessions and speaker bios, while helping you navigate the massive convention center. Plan out your agenda with the session breakdowns.

  2. Take advantage of first-timer orientation sessions- HIMSS will lead on-site conference orientation sessions with Q/A opportunities. Sessions will take place on Monday, March 9, 12-1 p.m. EST and Tuesday, March 10, 10:30-11:30 a.m. EST.

  3. Wear your HIMSS Annual Conference badge at all times- Security is heavily present throughout the entire Orange County Convention Center. You will not be able to enter sessions or the exhibit hall without your badge. Even if you're just running out for a quick break, security will not let you in without your badge. After the exhibit hall closes each day, your badge is also your ticket into many vendor or conference networking events. Your badge for full conference registration includes entry to the Monday night HIMSS Annual Conference opening reception, all keynote and Views from the Top sessions, all general education sessions March 10-12, as well as access to the exhibition floor.

  4. Map out your route to the convention center- Whether using the HIMSS Annual Conference shuttle system, walking or using a ride share app, figure out your route to and from the Orange County Convention Center to maximize commute efficiency and strategize how to tackle the crowds. Use the convention center district map to help.

  5. Wear practical clothing- From travelling cross-country, to walking all over the convention center, to hopping around evening networking events, you'll be on-the-go constantly. Wear comfortable shoes and drink water often. A collapsible and/or refillable bottle is especially useful throughout the day.

  6. Be aware of Coronavirus provisions- HIMSS Conference staff have asked for HIMSS to be a handshake-free event. HIMSS has assembled an external panel of medical professionals to advise evidence-based decision-making and ensure the safety attendees. There will be three on-site medical offices, with one dedicated to addressing both flu and coronavirus symptoms. They will be staffed by trained medical professionals with direct access to the Florida Department of Health and an epidemiologist. Around-the-clock sanitation procedures will be in place in compliance with CDC and WHO guidelines. Additionally, there will be a significant number of hand sanitation stations throughout the Orange County Convention Center and surrounding venues, along with disposable sanitation wipes and medical-grade face masks for those interested at the information booth. Be vigilant in hand washing, and avoid touching your face.

  7. Take advantage of Continuing Education (CE) credit opportunities- CE credit opportunities are available to physicians, nurses, pharmacists, project managers, HIM professionals, information security professionals and of course, CIOs and IT leaders. Click here for more information on CE credits at HIMSS Annual Conference and CHIME Spring Forum.

  8. Make meaningful conversation- Put yourself out there to network. This is the chance to voice your firsthand insight on how you improved end-user adoption and workflow, or to gain valuable direct tips from fellow HIT leaders. Pick the brains of decision-makers representing similar organization size and demographics as yours, so you can gain advice on things like EHR new version upgrades, vendor recommendations and navigating value-based care competition.

  9. Finally, don't forget to have fun- Maximize your balance of work and play. Check out the massive Instagram-worthy HIMSS sign at the convention center main entrance. Explore the exhibitor floor to see how vendor capabilities can solve your HIT pain points, and check out the creative booth designs and freebies. Bring a bag to hold all your giveaways!

Using this quick tip list, you are well prepared to jumpstart your HIMSS Annual Conference experience. See you in the sunshine state!

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