By Robert Jensen

Since taking the reins as AAMI’s president and CEO last November, one question I’ve faced from multiple stakeholders has been, “What are your plans for AAMI?” The short answer is that I want to build on AAMI’s hallmark successes, look for new and novel opportunities to serve and support our members, and showcase AAMI’s expertise.

The longer answer is, of course, a bit more nuanced because it hinges on getting a better sense of today’s challenges and emerging opportunities as healthcare technology changes faster than ever before, and the way we communicate and share information across the health sector evolves.

To an extent, the ultimate answer of how AAMI will grow rests with its members. I’m coming to our Annual Conference & Expo in Austin eager to listen and learn from the healthcare technology professionals whose work is so crucial to modern medicine.

I want to hear about how their jobs are changing, what’s working for them and what’s not.  I want them to think about questions such as, “What’s the most important thing you want me to know about your job?” and “What keeps you up at night?”. I want to hear from you so that AAMI’s evolution is in line with meeting your needs and values.

One thing is already very clear: It is incumbent upon AAMI to look over the horizon and further strengthen our understanding of the trends and dynamics shaping healthcare, in general, and healthcare technology, in particular.

Our members—whether they are medical device manufacturers, HTM professionals working in hospitals, sterile processing experts, educators, or others—face incredible demands on their jobs, and they typically do not have the time to scan the horizon to see what is coming. We need to do this for them and then flag potential hurdles, put forward ideas, and help to craft lasting solutions.

We must be agile and adept at cutting through the ever-growing clutter of information that is all around us, so that we can focus on the issues that matter—the ones that are going to impact the health sector not just today, but tomorrow.

As an example, we have more healthcare data than ever before. How much of that is translating into relevant information that is introducing new efficiencies and effectiveness into the healthcare sector and advancing patient safety? We can and must do better and AAMI—and the AAMI Foundation—can play a key role in making that happen.

At the Annual Conference, we’ll hear about how some devices create data that—when properly analyzed—can detect pre-symptomatic changes that are clinically actionable.  This is data that we rarely collect today, but it may be the future of some new clinical practices.

My professional career has included a stint as an officer in the U.S. Marines. It was there that I learned the value of being a team player, and those lessons resonate today. Literally and figuratively, AAMI has set the standards for the healthcare technology community. With your help, we can take that success to a new level and help shape the future of healthcare for ourselves and for generations to come.

What could be more exciting and rewarding than that?

Robert Jensen is president and CEO of AAMI. He can be reached at rjensen@aami.org.