Share Your Voice in the Annual Health IT Industry Outlook Survey

With less than one week until the HIMSS16 Annual Conference begins in Las Vegas, thousands of healthcare IT professionals are finishing up last minute conference preparation. Last year’s show had over 43,000 registered attendees, but that’s not the only figure that stood out. Our HIT Annual Survey conducted at the conference showed noteworthy results regarding industry barriers related to healthcare data analytics.

Completed by project managers, CIOs, IT directors and consultants, last year’s survey revealed that most (51 percent) showed confusion toward what and how much healthcare data to actually collect in data analytics initiatives. A majority (34 percent) also felt that the lack of buy-in across their healthcare organizations was the largest barrier to IT initiatives, including data analytics and achieving meaningful use. The full results from 2015 can be found here.

This year for HIMSS16, we’re excited to gain industry insights again by launching the Fourth Annual Health IT Industry Outlook Survey. This year’s survey presents six questions focusing on healthcare leaders’ top initiatives and concerns for the remainder of 2016. By participating, individuals can enter into drawings for $200 Amazon gift cards. Survey responses will remain anonymous.

Can’t attend HIMSS16 or want to participate in advanced? Not to worry! Take the quick survey here.

Amazon Gift 2016 Outlook Survey

As always, for those headed to Vegas, stop by Stoltenberg’s booth #3621 for prizes, refreshments, meet ups with our executives, and survey live visual results. Plus, help us celebrate our 20 years as strategic health IT advisors on social media with the hashtag #20inHIT.

See you in Vegas!

CHIME15 Recap Part II: CNN’s Fareed Zakaria on Healthcare’s Political, Not IT Revolution

In part II of our CHIME15 Fall Forum recap, we focus on the message of Friday’s conference keynote speaker Fareed Zakaria. Zakaria is the host of CNN‘s Fareed Zakaria GPS, and he writes a weekly column for The Washington Post.

In our first CHIME15 recap, we highlighted that CHIME’s c-suite survey pointed to being able to elicit change as the most critical skill for today’s healthcare CIOs. However, in Zakaria’s speech, he seemed to emphasize this great responsibility of healthcare executives more so beyond IT fixes. According to Zakaria, information technology cannot be the magic bullet for America’s healthcare problems.

“I don’t mean to be the bearer of bad news,” Zakaria said. “What I mean is that you have a very complicated job ahead of you, which is the structure. In addition to that, you have a Democratic system, which makes it very hard to change the structure.”

According to Zakaria, healthcare isn’t going to operate like any other market because the fundamental structure raises difficulty in achieving certain economies of scale.

Zakaria said that the U.S. has hoped to find a technological fix all to magically get around issues. Instead, he said, “I think, more likely we’re going to have to do the hard work of unraveling the system that we have in place and figuring out how you actually make some hard political decisions that force you to choose, you know, when you’re 85 years, do you need a double hip replacement?”

The revolution needed here is not based on information, but a political revolution.

What are your thoughts in response to Zakaria’s message? Let us know!

Agents of Change

This year’s island themed CHIME15 Fall Forum created quite a splash as CHIME unveiled the full results of its year-long CIO survey in the session “The Evolving Role of the CIO: Aligning CIO Perspectives with the Executive Team.” CHIME surveyed 123 CIOs across the country, along with some CEOs and other c-suite-executive colleagues of those CIOs, to compile results.

Among the most significant findings, the survey found that both CIOs and other c-suite executives agreed that CIOs’ will be change agents within their organizations over the next several years. However, surveyed c-suite executives held a heighted belief (over CIOs’) that CIOs will need to be emerging technology innovators to proactively push organizations forward. Opinions aligned that CIOs cannot simply meet required operational tasks. They must now proactively lead beyond.

agents of change

While change management earned the most votes as the most important CIO attribute, other survey options included talent management, senior management leadership, knowledge management and analytics, emerging technology and innovation and operational management.

According to Tim Zoph, session co-presenter and former CIO of Northwestern Medicine, if we think the healthcare industry is fast-paced now, it’s about to get even more chaotic. “There are a lot of forces for change, including organizational consolidation, consumerism, precision medicine, regulatory developments and payment model changes,” Zoph said.

Stay tuned for part II of our CHIME15 Fall Forum recap on the HITStoltenblog!

First-timer’s Look at Midwest HIMSS Fall Tech Conference

Mike Meyer and Christen Gregory represented SCI at the Midwest HIMSS event.
Mike Meyer and Christen Gregory represented SCI at the Midwest HIMSS event.

Last week I attended my first Midwest HIMSS conference in Chicago, Illinois-  the 2014 Midwest HIMSS Fall Technology Conference.  Being new to the company and to HIMSS conferences, it was a truly eye-opening and educational experience for me. It is neat to see a group of professionals come together from different states, companies and backgrounds all under one roof sharing the latest news and technologies in the healthcare world.  I enjoyed meeting people and networking as well as observing how other companies engaged with people as they came to booths.

Attendees and exhibitors network in the Promenade Ballroom at Midwest HIMSS.

The keynote speakers and breakout sessions were a wealth of knowledge. I was not only able to learn from the speeches but also the Q&A sessions at the end of each of them. Of all the breakout sessions, the session led by Laura McCrary of Kansas Health Information Network was my favorite.  Laura spoke on the future of health information exchange (HIE) and the initiatives the state of Kansas has taken to unite nearly all the hospitals and clinics in the state, so there is a quick, smooth transfer of information and ultimately improved patient care.

Morning sessions and keynote speakers pumped attendees up each day, getting them excited about health IT.
Morning sessions and keynote speakers pumped attendees up each day, getting them excited about health IT.

All in all, I took a lot away from the conference, and I hope to attend more of these conferences in the future and get more plugged into the HIMSS network!

The original House of Blues hosted the conference evening event. Mike and Christen were happy to explore Chicago!

Warm wishes,

Christen Gregory
Stoltenberg Strategic Accounts Manager

Highlights from Siemens Innovations ’14


Year after year, Siemens Innovations continues to be a great experience for the Stoltenberg Consulting team! This year’s event proved to be yet another productive and insightful opportunity for Stoltenberg and Siemens, as we further reinforced our partnership – an effective pairing of HIT solutions and expertise – in the journey towards an improved healthcare industry, for both patients and providers.


John Glaser, CEO, Siemens, gave a wonderful presentation during the opening session. With the groundbreaking news of Cerner acquiring the company only having been released a few days prior, the conference allowed Siemens to set the stage for the future and discuss what was to come. We are very excited to continue working with these organizations moving forward.


The party hosted by SCI was also a success! It was a great night of engaging and networking with our team members, partners and industry colleagues – all while having an old-fashioned good time.


It was an extremely memorable night, as many of the Innovations attendees joined us for the event and enjoyed having a little fun in between the busy days at the conference.

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We were incredibly happy with the party and the overall turnout. Thanks to everyone that attended our event and we hope you join us for similar nights in the future!


All in all, it was another successful Siemens Innovations. Hope to see you again next year!

HIMSS14 Both Humbling and Empowering for a First-Time Attendee

The HIMSS14 convention from a first-time perspective is both a humbling and empowering experience. HIMSS 2014 was hosted in Orlando, Florida and closed out with over 38,000 attendees. Even more impressive, the list of exhibitors encompassed 1,233 booths throughout the exhibit hall. Highlights included keynote speakers Hillary Rodham Clinton and Erik Weihenmayer, and for a first time attendee, who is also relatively new to the industry, it was all motivating to be surrounded by power players of HIT throughout the week.

Building the Show Floor

The first day that I arrived, we were tasked with setting up the booth. The exhibit hall is much larger than I ever imagined. It was such an exciting time to see the show floor go from blank concrete to carpeted elaborate booths as far as the eye can see. Vendors utilized every square inch. The imagination of each vendor was truly unique, as there were exhibits ranging from ornate booths with a giant tree, a dance floor, programmed iPads and televisions, and even our very own geodesic dome. The next morning when the convention began, I was truly shocked.

The Show Floor Officially Opens

Stoltenberg booth #2465 stood along the main isle with its What If for Health IT theme.

The sheer volume of people attending the conference is astounding. It was very interesting to engage with professionals from all across the nation, spanning all scopes of HIT. As a Stoltenberg junior consultant, I openly spoke with individuals about the Junior Consultant Program and Help Desk Service Line as staffing solutions.

This year, we used our signature Stoltenberg geodesic dome. Our very own CEO Sheri Stoltenberg shared that the driving force behind it was that it was a differentiator, and it very much so was. Not only was it a very different exhibit than most on the floor, but it was also the strongest free standing structure. I very much admired when Sheri stated that this represents our strength in the industry and our motivation to be different than our competitors. As you can imagine, during exhibitor hours, several conversations started just from the excitement of the dome.

What If For Health IT

Send your own and see others’ What Ifs by tweeting to hashtag #WhatIf4HIT.

For the HIMSS14 conference, our theme was  What If…? Exploring the Future of Health IT One Question at a Time. We encouraged attendees and members of the industry to tweet, write down, or just ask any question that they felt would make an impact on the future of the healthcare IT industry. It was very interesting to hear what participants had to share. My personal favorite What If? came from a CHIME member asking, “What if we could engage younger generations to get involved in #HIT?” As a young professional, I would like to see more people my age pursuing careers in HIT, as well as being advocates for improved patient care. This campaign really drove home the fact that this industry is so very dynamic and ever-changing. It gets me excited to think about the possibilities and what the future may hold for both HIT and Stoltenberg.

A New Personal Outlook on Health IT

HIMSS14 paved the way for new outlook on the industry for me. I am no longer focused only on what I personally am doing or what my company is doing, but where is the industry is headed in years to come. The big questions that kept occupying my thoughts as I walked through the exhibition hall were, “What does this all mean for patient care?” and “What will my job look like in 5, 10, or 15 years from now?” It is inspiring to let your mind wander in the capabilities of HIT, as there are no real limits to what we are capable of achieving. Simply being in the room with some of the most influential people of the industry was truly a privilege. My first HIMSS convention will forever leave a lasting impression.

Some of the Stoltenberg team gather at the HIMSS14 Universal Studios event.

Thank you for your time!


-Kaitlyn Graber, Junior Healthcare Systems Consultant at Stoltenberg Consulting

Recap of the Busy Conference Season

Throughout the past few months, Stoltenberg leadership has had the opportunity to attend several health IT conferences, including CHIME13 Fall Forum, Midwest HIMSS Conference, New York eHealth Digital Health Conference, and several smaller regional HIMSS events. During its appearances, Stoltenberg representatives exhibited, held focus groups, attended sessions and keynote speakers, and even presented their own take on topics like help desk services and smart data.


At the CHIME Fall Forum, “Surviving the economic downturn” stood out as a popular session, as it discussed applying data analytics to HIT department finances to take the emotion and stress out of budgeting. Another major highlight was words from Farzad Mostashari, just days after leaving his post as the National Coordinator for Health IT at the ONC. Mostashari shared some experiences of his time at the ONC, the impact of budget issues and the government shutdown on HIT, and thoughts on the timetable of Stage 2 meaningful use.

Fast-forward a few weeks later, Stoltenberg attended and exhibited at the Midwest HIMSS Conference. Hot topics of the conference included preventative care and mobile health, aiming to link wellness coaching with technology to impact lifestyle choices. Sessions showed how mobile health continues to link patients and healthcare providers with more capability of diagnosis, treatment, and education through methods of interactive patient apps in the form of mini games and more.

Finally, at the New York eHealth Collaborative Digital Health Conference, major interest points included the importance of interoperability standards on Health IT innovation, patient engagement and the value of empowering consumers, as well as the power of data. Within their keynotes, Chairman of Kaiser Permanente George Halvorson and National Director of Organizing for Action Jim Messina both discussed the power of data to transform the U.S. healthcare system. Halvorson specifically touched on how HIT and real-time data has dramatically improved quality of care and reduced costs at Kaiser.

Throughout each of these and future conferences, we’re thankful to gain industry insight and inspiration to impact our own thought leadership, as well as how we constantly push to best aid our client hospitals.