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Why we sponsor the HL7 WGM

Publication date: May 10, 2015

Ringholm acts as one of two main sponsors of the HL7 Working Group Meeting (WGM) currently being held in Paris. So why did we decide to sponsor this meeting?

Well, we haven't had the opportunity to sponsor a European HL7 WGM for the past 9 years - the last European WGM was held in Cologne in 2009. Ringholm focuses on the delivery of IHE/HL7/DICOM training courses in Europe, so we won't sponsor any meetings held outside of Europe.

There's also a more strategic motivation: to promote the hosting of HL7 events outside of the US. As a direct consequence of HL7 being a global standard (in the sense that it is used in many countries) it will have to (in my opinion) organize its meetings wherever the users of HL7 standards are located, a fair chunk of which (45%, my estimate from a few years ago) are located in the various European countries.

The board of HL7 International seems to have a similar strategy, they are very much in favor of having meetings at various locations around the world, whilst knowing that the costs outside of the US may be higher (meetings rooms mostly have to be paid for, they're not offset by inflated hotel room charges) whereas the revenues are likely to be lower (e.g. most US based members don't get permission/funding from their employers to attend meetings outside of the continental US). This is however a chicken-and-egg problem: if almost all meetings are held in the US, one will mainly attract an US audience. The May 2016 meeting will be held in Canada - I do hope HL7 wil be able to host one meeting per year outside of the US, which is why we decided to sponsor this meeting.

.. and yes, one never knows, the sponsoring may actually lead to additional attendees for our training courses.


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About Ringholm bv

Ringholm bv is a group of European experts in the field of messaging standards and systems integration in healthcare IT. We provide the industry's most advanced training courses and consulting on healthcare information exchange standards.
See http://www.ringholm.com or call +31 33 7 630 636 for additional information.
Rene's Column (English) Rene is the Tutor-in-chief of Ringholm.