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When HLTH launched in 2017, it embarked on an ambitious goal to disrupt the status quo for events within the healthcare industry. It set out to bring a new vision to healthcare events that embodied the industry’s highest aspirations for innovation and transformation, all while evolving the antiquated approaches that have existed for decades.

Healthcare is complex, and the community HLTH serves is multi-layered and consists of diverse individuals and organizations from around the world. Additionally, as the industry experiences a period of rapid change, one important adaptation HLTH is making to address these factors is a focus on audience journeys-tailoring pathways through content, programs and meetings based on a deeper learning about each population and individual that interacts with them.

Over the past five years, HLTH has become the preeminent event in the healthcare industry. This years industry event took place in Las Vegas starting on November 13. Content sessions this year showcase the most exciting, compelling thinkers and industry leaders. The event this year includes the StartUp Health Festival which has gathered thousands of CEOs, investors, world leaders and entrepreneurs to focus on solving the world’s biggest health challenges.

The fifth annual event drew thousands of healthcare leaders and innovators to Las Vegas. It’s only five years old, but the HLTH Conference has emerged as a big deal in healthcare. More than 300 people were expected to speak at the event. Some of the speakers included Greg A. Adams, chair and CEO of Kaiser Permanente, Sam Hazen, CEO of HCA Healthcare, Rosalind “Roz” Brewer, CEO of Walgreens Boots Alliance, U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra, and more.

Thomas Kurian, Google Cloud CEO, spoke to healthcare and technology leaders, outlining some of the company’s latest news and talking about how technology is changing the industry. Google Cloud is working with payers, providers, and pharmaceutical companies. “It’s an ecosystem that needs to deliver the care that people need,” Kurian said.

Google Cloud and Epic, the electronic health records firm, have signed an agreement hailed as the first step in enabling customers to run their Epic workloads on Google Cloud. Hackensack Meridian Health said it plans to move its Epic workloads to Google Cloud, touting gains in efficiency, innovation, and security.

Even with the COVID-19 pandemic and its assorted challenges, HCA Healthcare CEO Sam Hazen says the company has emerged with a commitment to embracing healthcare technology. Speaking at the HLTH Conference Sunday, Hazen said technology is the key to advancing everything from patient care to workforce development. “We’ve come out of the pandemic with a very focused effort in digitizing HCA healthcare in ways other industries have done,” Hazen said.

Geisinger CEO Jaewon Ryu made a case for value-based care. Ryu outlined impressive statistics demonstrating the effectiveness of Geisinger’s home-based health program and an initiative to help patients get better food.

To engage in such efforts, Ryu said, “You need a payment model that supports it.” And that’s where he made the case for health systems to move more toward value-based care, and away from the traditional fee-for-service model.

With value-based care, health systems are rewarded for improving patients’ health, and are essentially taking on the risk that they will be successful in keeping patients healthy, or at least from avoiding more costly care.

The Geisinger at Home program, which brings healthcare professionals to patients’ homes to manage complex conditions, has enjoyed considerable success, Ryu said. Patients in those programs have 36% lower hospitalization rates, and they have seen a 20% reduction in emergency department visits.

More summaries of these topics can be read on the Chief Health Care Executive website.