Vizient's Summit planner, Nancy DePaolo, shares her insight on the April event during a recent Q&A session. 

How has Vizient’s member meeting strategy evolved with the 2015 integration of VHA, University HealthSystem Consortium and Novation?

First, we knew our strategy had to deliver national conference meetings that met the diverse needs of the collective membership. Second, our goal was to provide a conference that is fun, memorable and promotes networking through member-to-member connections, member-to-supplier connections and member-to-staff connections within a variety of settings.  

We believe Summit’s format will begin a new era of cross-sharing knowledge and information between academic medical center members, large IDNs and community hospitals.

With the close of the acquisition of MedAssets SCM and Sg2, our focus over the course of 2016 will be to evolve our event strategy to meet the educational and networking needs of our combined membership.

The theme is "The Future Awakens." What does that mean and how will attendees see that we are delivering on it?

"The Future Awakens" is meant to convey that the future of health care is no longer five or 10 years away, it’s now. As an industry we need to quit talking about change and start implementing it. We developed a three-pronged approach to provide the greatest opportunity for connecting and learning:

The peer-to-peer preconference meetings enable the specialized member groups to continue discussing issues and challenges that are unique to their type of organization and their role within the hospital.

The educational sessions are focused exclusively on supply chain and operational efficiencies to drive financial performance improvement. Presenters will share and discuss real-world examples of members solving today’s challenges as well as strategic plans adopting innovations in medical and business technology. Topics include:

  • Care delivery improvement across the continuum
  • Strategies for operational excellence
  • Value-based care delivery
  • Network solutions for performance excellence
  • Strategic competencies
  • Future trends and innovations
  • Data use, analysis and measurement

The Vizient Spark area will give members an opportunity to take a deeper dive into some of Vizient’s innovative solutions on the horizon.

Our member event in the fall, Vizient Connections Clinical Summit, will have a similar format and be focused on clinical, quality and performance improvement strategies. This approach provides members with the knowledge, solutions and expertise necessary to accelerate their performance today, near term and 10 years from now.

Summit mentions "rapid-fire" sessions for the educational tracks. What are they and what is the value of that format for attendees?

The "rapid-fire" session is a proven presentation style brought forward from University HealthSystem Consortium’s annual meeting. The sessions are referred to as rapid fire because they are 30 minutes in length—20 minutes of presentation followed by a 10-minute Q&A. This style requires presenters to immediately focus on the objective of the session. It also gives us the ability to cover more topics over the course of the day.

What is the Solutions Exchange? Why was it added and what is the value to attendees?

One of our foundational strategies is to continue to provide a national conference to members without a registration fee. To do that, we had to create a format that added value to supplier sponsors, as their sponsorship fees help offset the cost of the conference. The Solutions Exchange provides for that and it is beneficial for both the member and the suppliers. In this "reverse expo," members are at designated tables and sponsoring suppliers representing various product categories are able to meet and further develop their strategic partnerships and share their supply chain strategies and challenges.

Who are the keynotes and why were they selected?

Bob Costas will be the keynote speaker on Wednesday, April 13 for the combined member and supplier general session. We felt his energy and engaging and humorous experiences in the sports and broadcasting worlds would we a great fit for this diverse crowd. He will share insights into today’s current events, along with changes the journalism and broadcasting industry is experiencing as a result of the way people now want to receive their news and information.

At the member plenary meeting over lunch, keynote Mike Rayburn will present, "What If ...?" Mike’s presentation blends world-class guitar skills with comedy to teach the three powerful tools that can turn teams into armies of innovators able to create lasting change.

Mick Ebeling, the acclaimed CEO of Not Impossible Labs, will be the featured presenter at our closing session on Friday, April 15. Mick will share how to think creatively to change the way we look at everyday problems and create solutions.

Mark your calendar for April 13-15 and join us while we explore the ideas of tomorrow together.

Published: March 7, 2016