MPA, CPHIMS, FHIMSS
Assistant Professor and Program Director of Healthcare Informatics Administration
Roberts Wesleyan College
John Schrenker, MPA, CPHIMS, FHIMSS, is an assistant professor and program director of Healthcare Informatics Administration at Roberts Wesleyan College. He has been active in the area of information systems management for over 20 years, the past eight years focusing on the healthcare setting. Schrenker is currently the chair of the HIMSS Distance Education Committee.
HIMSS: How did you become involved with HIMSS?
Schrenker: I have been a member of HIMSS for about eight years, but I didn’t really become involved with HIMSS until I attended HIMSS12. At the conference, I attended the New York State chapter reception and met many of the chapter leaders. Historically, all the chapter activities were in the New York City area, so after the conference, I contacted them to see if we could plan an event in Rochester, N.Y. They were enthusiastic about the possibility, and I began working with them to plan a one-day conference. It was a great event, and we are looking forward to holding it for the third year this coming June.
HIMSS: What has been the most rewarding aspect of your involvement with HIMSS?
Schrenker: I think HIMSS has a lot to offer, but the most rewarding for me is the opportunity to meet some amazing people who are making a difference in how healthcare informatics is being applied to deliver better, more cost-effective care. At HIMSS10, I attended a town hall meeting with Dr. David Blumenthal, and at HIMSS12, I attended one with Dr. Farzad Mostashari. Both were amazing opportunities; however, the people I meet at the conference sessions and work with on the national and chapter committees are really the most important aspect of my participation. HIMSS members are eager to share ideas, and as a result, I have developed professional relationships with experts from all over the country.
HIMSS: What do you hope to accomplish in the upcoming year as the chair of the Distance Education Committee?
Schrenker: As chair of the Distance Education Committee, I really function as a facilitator; it’s the committee members who do the real work. For this year, we’ve formed three work groups: eLearning Academy Workgroup, Health IT Value Suite Workgroup, and Health IT Certification Workgroup. Each of these groups interacts with the respective HIMSS staff member to offer guidance and insight on how to most effectively deliver value to HIMSS members through distance education. The HIMSS staff works with committee members to vet ideas for new programs and services; develop and refine policies; and meet the informational and educational needs of members. As chair, my goal is to help insure HIMSS staff know how the committee can assist them and that committee members have the opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to HIMSS.
HIMSS: Can you give a brief overview of HIMSS14 Online?
Schrenker: I’m excited about HIMSS14 Online. Last year, HIMSS13 was successful beyond what anyone imagined. The online conference delivered live streaming coverage of the keynote speakers and many presentations. Distance Education Committee members also helped facilitate online discussions on some key topics. This year should be even better with more opportunities to view presentations and interact with other online attendees from around the world. There is a great lineup of keynote speakers, and presenters will highlight the Health IT Value Suite, demonstrating the value of health IT.
HIMSS: How do you anticipate the conversation will continue after HIMSS14?
Schrenker: It’s really up to the participants, but there are many opportunities. HIMSS offers a wide variety of webinars and virtual conference events that allow members to continue to participate in the conversation.
HIMSS: What advice would you give professionals just entering the healthcare or IT field?
Schrenker: Too often you see IT people only talking to IT people and likewise with clinical and administrative people. Get to know people who work in other areas and other organizations, and try to understand their perspective. The only way for you and your organization to grow is to work effectively with people in all areas of healthcare.Share Your Story