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Thursday, January 22, 2015

HIMSS or Bust

Last year I had the opportunity to do an amazing interview with Tim from HIStalk.  It was a wide-ranging discussion that covered a great deal of the HIT (health information technology) landscape.   Toward the end of our conversation, Tim and I began to talk about the challenges patients face attending HIMSS.  Many patients would like to go this enormous conference with its thousands of attendees, great educational sessions and access to numerous health care venders; but cannot afford to pay for hotel lodging, airfare and an attendee pass.  We talked about the possibility of working together to create patient travel scholarships.

So today we would like to jointly announce the HIS-talking Gallery Patient Scholarship for travel to HIMSS 2015, April 12-16, in Chicago!

There will be five scholarships offered for $1,000.00 each provided by HIStalk.  Each winning attendee will also have  a HIMSS attendee badge.  The winners will write a post about why they want to attend HIMSS prior to the event. That post will be hosted on HIStalk.  They will be encouraged to use social media to report out during the event. They will also write a HIStalk post explaining their experience after the event. As the founder of The Walking Gallery, I will offer to paint a jacket for any patient winners who have not already joined The Walking Gallery. The HIS-talking Gallery patient scholarship winners will be walking talking patient thought ambassadors in the hallowed halls of HIT.  Also they will be able to sit in the comfortable space of the HIStalk booth on the exhibition floor whenever they want to rest and recuperate.

In addition, they will also get an official T-shirt!

 How do you enter?

If you would like to be considered for one of these scholarships, please email your request to (one of our newest members of the Walking Gallery): Lorre Wisham at  Your email needs to explain why you should be funded to attend HIMSS and please include your facebook link or Twitter handle. (International patients are welcome to apply but they must be fluent in English and the scholarship amount is a flat $1000.00 regardless of travel distance.)

How is it judged?

The HIStalk team will judge requests based on writing merit and I will be looking at the patient story aspects.

When is it due?

All requests to attend must be turned in to Lorre by Feb 9, 2015.  We will announce the winners within one week on  Checks will be issued before the event so winners can book their airfare with these funds.

 Why are we doing this?

I see this scholarship as a wonderful next step in greater inclusion of patients within the HIMSS conference.  I thank Tim and the entire team at HIStalk for their willingness to support patient participation in such a meaningful way.

Now, start writing those emails!


  1. Thank you, HIStalk, for investing in patients and their advocates! Regina Holliday is a brilliant "development officer"! She is generous to share her ideas and insights with us all so that we can prevent patient harm while working together.

    1. I am so glad that HIStalk has done this great thing for patients!

  2. So so happy to be part of the patient travel scholarship and to share my personal and profesionnal experience about patients touched by cancer and their relatives. It is such an honor to be there and to wear my Walking Gallery jacket with all my walkers friends.
    From France to Chicago to spread the world about the improvement of Health policies in the benefit of patients!

    1. You will be such a powerful voice at this event!