HINZ Conference 2014

Approximately six hundred and fifteen participants attended this 13th annual HINZ conference and exhibition.

Most of the following presentations can be found on www.hinz.org.nz.

Keynote speakers were:

Dr. Ngai-Tseung Cheung, Head of Information Technology and Health Informatics / Chief Medical Officer Hong Kong Hospital Authority. His presentation was: Health Informatics – transforming healthcare delivery in Hong Kong. One section of his presentation which appealed was the fact that this organisation have their own informatics team and when they want something specific, the team build it, fit for purpose. (Unfortunately this presentation is not available.)

Dr. Tricia Greenhalgh, who video conferenced in from London, spoke on “Managing multi morbidity in an aging population – why is technology so often part of the problem and how can we make it the solution?” This was an excellent presentation. Looking at technology to support care but trying to ensure that it was appropriate for the person using it. This allowed the patient to become empowered rather than frustrated and disempowered.

Geraldine McBride spoke on “Empowering the patient – how technology expectations and experiences in healthcare will increasing focus on the individual, putting them at the centre of their medical, health and wellbeing value chain.” Another thought provoking presentation making it clear that things MUST change and people must take charge of their own health, utilizing many of the technologies available to them such as fitness apps, meditation devices and nutritional counters.

There were 32 plenary sessions which were all of a high standard. There had been 79 abstracts presented so a wide choice was able to be offered. Some of these submissions which had not been accepted, had been offered a poster opportunity. The presentations covered big data, standards and case studies of projects underway.

Prior to the conference workshops were offered. The two which I was involved with were:

“Information sharing is a responsibility. How can it be done safely?”

This was an update from HIGEAG (Health Information Governance Expert Advisory Group) from the presentation in 2013. Again participants were asked questions related to how they wanted their health information cared for, answers were collated and will be considered for inclusion in the Framework.

The second workshop was “Barriers to Telehealth.” What is holding us back? This was conducted by the New Zealand Telehealth Forum. Presentations formed a large part of the workshop, with the last section was spent gathering questions and answers from the floor around what people thought were the barriers to the uptake of telehealth. This valuable information was again recorded for consideration by the Forum group.

This was an excellent conference. One I would recommend to anyone with an interest in the future developments of the utilization of technology within health care.

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