HIMSS First Day: Exhibits cover broad spectrum of healthcare IT

April 5, 2009

The HIMSS 09 exhibit floor opened Sunday as thousands of IT enthusiasts descended on McCormick Place in Chicago. Mammoth exhibit halls packed in November with imaging equipment played host to myriad information technologies, some focused on the core of healthcare IT – switching, translating and archiving packets of data; others addressing the consequences of IT adoption.

The HIMSS 09 exhibit floor opened Sunday as thousands of IT enthusiasts descended on McCormick Place in Chicago. Mammoth exhibit halls packed in November with imaging equipment played host to myriad information technologies, some focused on the core of healthcare IT – switching, translating and archiving packets of data; others addressing the consequences of IT adoption.

  • The Dolphin 9900hc mobile computer cozied up to germophobes with a new disinfectant-ready housing, a first among leading rugged mobile solutions, according to its maker Honeywell International. Point of care concerns make cleanliness a virtue, as mobile computers can be vectors of more than information, spreading pathogens from place to place.
  • Vioguard asked why wipe down when technology can take care of itself? The company introduced the world’s first self-sanitizing computer using ultraviolet light to blast germs.  Independent laboratory tests show the germicidal lamps kill more than 99.9% of MRSA in less than 10 seconds, according to the company.
  • Microsoft and partners hawked the interactive, multi-touch Microsoft “Surface” platform. The Seattle software giant focused on four healthcare scenarios demonstrating the platform’s acumen at improving communications among providers, physicians and patients. In doctor patient consultation, Microsoft partner Infusion Development created a Surface application that displays and allows doctors and patients to share cardiac images, charts, clinical documents and integrated records from the Microsoft HealthVault. For pediatric neurological rehabilitation, Vectorform developed a suite of applications to assist with motor control and learning for neurological rehab, apps that exercise and evaluate patient motor control. Designed to work with Allscripts electronic health record, Surface applications newly developed by the ITvendor offer  an interactive overview of the patient visit and a personalized care plan drawn from the electronic health record for the patient to review before leaving.  MEDHOST came up with a clinical collaboration app that provides real-time information to caregivers and decision-makers to view information at a glance with the details when required to make split-second decisions.
  • HIPAAT International introduced an enhanced privacy technology, its Web-based myConsentMinder,  a vendor-neutral product that allows consumers to record their privacy policies using conventional, user-friendly forms. Accessing myConsentMinder is as simple as logging onto a personal health record or patient portal, then creating, editing and storing privacy preferences, expressed in OASIS eXtensible Access Control Markup Language (XACML) and Health Level 7 (HL7) standards.
  • Infinitt North America featured its Web-based RIS/PACS/Cardiology linked to an HL7 Gateway that interfaces to any HL7-compliant IT system, including EMR, HIS or RIS, as well as third party billing or voice recognition system.
  • Developers take note: BridgeForward Software released Viaduct, a graphically based design platform built to rework legacy applications into networkable products. Describing its latest creation as a service-oriented, teamwork-enabled design studio, the company likened its software to a computerized whiteboard compatible with any platform and any device.
  • Fuji proclaimed itself “not just a PACS vendor anymore” but a healthcare software provider.  Its acquisition of RIS vendor Empiric Systems four months ago provided the technology platform to thrust the company PACS into a broader spectrum of patient data management. The integration between the company’s RIS and PACS is complete, installs are rising, and Fuji is now implementing a complete radiology management solution at a large integrated delivery network.   Radiology and cardiology platforms are supported on a VMWare virtualized environment.  Customers can choose data center hosted and local systems.
  • XENA Health launched a Software as a Service (SaaS) medical claims billing solution designed to drive down medical costs. A pay as you go pricing model is propelled by a rules-based logic engine.