Inaugural Health IT Expo set for May 31-June 1 in New Orleans

About the author: As a freelance marketing consultant, Jamie Martin lends her talents to private health IT companies in support of their mission to engage both patients and providers in the use of technology to improve outcomes while reducing costs. A former award-winning journalist, Jamie has spoken on topics related to patient engagement and health IT at technology-focused events across the U.S. Follow her on Twitter at @DavisJamie77

As well-established thought leaders in the world of health information technology, Health IT Expo founders John Lynn and Colin Hung have attended more than their fair share of health IT conferences.

“There are hundreds of health IT conferences in all their varieties. I know because I attend at least 20 or 30 a year,” said Lynn, founder of “While each has its place in the industry, they started to feel very fake and missed the core challenges that in-the-trenches health IT professionals face.”

With a desire to create a “unique venue where health IT professionals and health IT vendors can come together to collaborate,” Lynn and Hung, CMO and editor at and co-founder of, hatched the idea for Health IT Expo about a year ago. Their joint goal was not to create “another ‘me, too’ conference,” but rather an event that focuses on the practical needs of health IT professionals – one that allows innovative health IT companies to rise above the “noise” generated by larger health IT vendors, Lynn explained.

“The goal of Health IT Expo is to create a community event focused on practical innovation that will lead to breakthrough and disruptive innovation,” he said. “We see Health IT Expo as a way for these innovative companies to be seen and heard by those healthcare organizations that really need their solutions.”

Indeed, scheduled for May 31-June 1 in New Orleans, the inaugural conference promises to send attendees home with practical knowledge and innovative, technology-based ideas that can be implemented across healthcare settings. Given the combination of work, education and networking that happens when health IT stakeholders come together, the selection of New Orleans as the host city for the very first Health IT Expo was an easy one, according to Lynn.

“One of the trademarks of conferences we organize is that we work hard and we play hard,” he said. “This made New Orleans the ideal city for Health IT Expo.”

With dozens of sessions (and a few built-in fun social opportunities at local hot spots like The Swamp on Bourbon Street) spanning the two-day conference, attendees can expect to hear from well-known health IT thought leaders like keynote speakers Shahid Shah, who has served as a health IT advisor to organizations from the National Institutes of Health to the White House; Paul Black, Allscripts CEO; and Rasu Shrestha, MD, Chief Innovation Officer of UPMC.

And Louisiana’s health IT innovators will receive a fair share of the spotlight as well, with Jeff Robbins and Raychelle Fernandez with the New Orleans-based team at Dynamic Health IT and Aimee Quirk, CEO of innovationOchsner (iO), among the featured speakers.

“We were also lucky early in our conference planning to get to know the people at the New Orleans Business Alliance and learn about the NOLAHI competitions. Those competitions were really exciting and we found a number of companies that aligned really well with the Health IT Expo community, so we were excited to involve them in the conference,” Lynn added. “We’re also planning to introduce our attendees to the amazing work being done at the New Orleans BioInnovation Center and possibly visits to Launch Pad and The Shop.”

Ultimately, said Lynn, the goal of the conference is to address the challenges faced by health IT professionals today.

“The real challenge is that no two organizations have the same challenge. The biggest goal is bring the community of health IT professionals together so they can share with each other the solutions they’ve found to their problems,” he explained. “That’s the real magic of what we’re creating at Health IT Expo.”

It’s not too late for health IT professionals to be part of that magic – registration for Health IT Expo will remain open for another week. Those who can’t attend in person are encouraged to participate in a live-streamed Think Tank event as part of the pre-conference schedule on Wed., May 30, as well as the knowledge-sharing available via the conference’s Twitter hashtag, #HITExpo. To learn more about the event, or to register, visit