Large Federal Health Data Conference Experiences Challenges

Morning eHealth: Health Datapalooza agenda light on HHS headliners – April 18, 2017, By David Pittman, POLITICO

“HEALTH DATA CONFERNCE NOT AS EXCITING: Health Datapalooza, the annual conference of data geeks and number nerds, is curiously lacking in appearances by HHS political appointees with a little more than a week to go, Morning eHealth notices. ONC head Don Rucker and HHS’s new deputy assistant secretary for health technology reform, John Fleming, aren’t scheduled to speak. There are no political appointees from CMS and HHS Secretary Tom Price, while invited, has yet to confirm, according to the event’s website. Compare that to the last three years when HHS secretaries (Sylvia Mathews Burwell and Kathleen Sebelius) and National Coordinator Karen DeSalvo spoke. Former CMS head Andy Slavitt keynoted the last two years, and Vice President Joe Biden attended last year.

— An HHS spokesman said not to read too much into the lack of an HHS presence. Academy Health, which runs Health Datapalooza, chalked it up to…”

G2X TAKE: Despite it being the first time for many new CMS and HHS political appointees to speak publicly to a health IT-centered crowd, as this post points out, this upcoming annual event appears to be lacking some key government officials on the agenda.

There are still many of reasons to be excited about Health Datapalooza, but it does not appear that attendees will get as much guidance about the new administration’s agenda as they may have received in previous years and would like to hear. This is not a surprise as the leadership teams are likely to shy away from saying too much until they get their feet under them. This event is hosted by HHS, so you can expect to see a late flurry of activity as they lean on leadership to get some last minutes speakers confirmed. 

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