Haworth College of Business News

Conference focuses on relationships and health information technology as key to quality health care

Over 200 health care professionals, consumers, educators, researchers, IT professionals and students gathered for the first International Conference on Health Information Technology Advancement (ICHITA-2011)  at the Fetzer Center in October.

“The event drew together the right mix of people to tackle some of the emerging issues in health care.” says CHITA Director Dr. Bernard Han. “We explored multifaceted solutions for the consumer, health care provider and information technology professional in the health care space that can be augmented by health information technology.”

“While this is the first international conference, the warm turnout with HIT professionals from six states and three countries reaffirms our belief that health care deserves more attention from both the academics and the community,” says  Han. “In fact, we have received many valuable comments and suggestions from the participants. Dr. Sharie Falan, associate director of WMU-CHITA, and I will carefully go through the conference survey results. Most likely, the two immediate tasks we expect to focus on are the implementation of a proposed academic major, Health Informatics and Information Management, and the acquisition of research grants that will promote innovative use of HIT for better health care practice and the training and retooling of displaced workforce.”

Co-hosted by the WMU Center for Health Information Technology Advancement and the Relationship-Centered Care Network of Southwest Michigan, the event shared information about critical issues and opportunities in health care. The conference focused on resolving health issues through relationship-centered care and the infusion of health information technologies.

The day-long conference featured internationally known scholars and practitioners, including Dr. Nancy Ridenour, dean and professor, University of New Mexico College of Nursing; Dr. Joseph Tan, Wayne C. Fox chair in eBusiness innovation, professor of eHealth informatics, Degroote School of Business, McMaster University; and Pamela Hash, director, clinical education and professional development, Bon Secours Health System, Inc.