HFMA’s annual conference heavy on topic of cybersecurity challenges – Healthcare Finance News

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The Healthcare Financial Management Association will be tackling the issues that have been challenging hospital finance executives during HFMA’s annual conference taking place from Monday, June 24 through Thursday, June 27 in Las Vegas.

Cybersecurity is top of mind since the Change Healthcare ransomware attack in February that disrupted claims processing for the majority of hospitals and physician practices nationwide. 

Several sessions are looking at cybersecurity protection and one is focused on clinical resiliency through a ransomware event.

HFMA, which heard a lot from members about the Change cyberattack, convened with members to strategize how they should address the issue, according to Katie Gilfillan, director of Healthcare Finance Policy and Education for HFMA. 

“HFMA is looking at, from an educational perspective, a lot around cybersecurity, especially around Change Healthcare,” Gilfillan said. “This year we have several sessions around the topic of cybersecurity.”

Other topics at this year’s event for hospital financial leaders will cover clinician burnout, workforce shortages, rising costs and claims challenges and working with Medicare Advantage plans in a session to “improve your hospital’s odds of financial success through an understanding of the complex relationship between traditional fee-for-service Medicare and Medicare Advantage (MA) organizations.”  

The conference is also looking ahead to November and what healthcare can expect from the upcoming presidential election. A Washington insights panel includes a diverse political perspective from seasoned insiders Jonathan Karl, Donna Brazil and Michael Steele.

There’s seven content tracks including Accounting and Finance; AI, Innovation and Technology; Data and Analytics; Business Strategy and Operational Excellence; Leadership and Workforce; Revenue Cycle and Reimbursement; and Value-based Care and Patient Experience.

“We’re making sure all hospitals are represented, all facility types, from rural, small to large,” Gilfillan said. 

The core audience is CFOs and finance executives, revenue cycle leaders, supporting businesses and physician groups. HFMA is expecting between 3,500 and 4,000 people to attend.

One theme that emerged post COVID-19 is the issue of supporting the workforce and rebuilding trust, Gilfillan said. Former Chief Medical Officer Geeta Nayyar, who wrote “Dead Wrong” makes the case for rebuilding trust during a conference session.

Burnout is addressed in a keynote by Suneel Gupta, a bestselling author and visiting scholar at Harvard Medical School who focuses on personal and professional development. He will give a keynote on Tuesday morning with Marc Scher, former partner, KPMG and chair-elect of HFMA for the 2023-2024 year.

The conference opens on a Monday, instead of a Sunday this year, with speakers C. Ann Jordan, president and CEO of HFMA and Richard Pollack, president and CEO of the American Hospital Association, opening the conference. 

Bradley Tinnermon, SVP Finance Shared Services for Kaiser Permanente and Edna Buffington, vice president of Revenue Cycle for Community Health Services then delve into the brass tacks of hospital finances, the revenue cycle, and a deep dive into automation, AI and machine learning.

Billing, coding, accounting and audits, contract negotiations, streamlining authorization, denial prevention and the patient experience are also on the agenda.

Miguel Vigo, chief revenue cycle officer for UC San Diego Health and Captain Paul Haas, a F-35 Contract Instructor Pilot for Lockheed Martin, will lead a conversation on leadership.

Kevin Holloran, senior director of U.S. Public Finance for Fitch Ratings and Gordon Edwards, CFO and treasurer for Akron Children’s Hospitals, will address a panel on C-Suite insights.

For more information visit the HFMA Annual Conference “A New Frontier in Health.”

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