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The Telehealth Series: Navigating Your Way Through ATA

By Melissa Baratta | On April 27, 2018

Time has flown and the pre-conference for ATA18 starts tomorrow! The American Telemedicine Association annual conference brings together healthcare providers, business professionals, clinicians and leaders from across the health and technology sectors to share insights, updates, innovations and research on what’s trending and how to shape the future of telehealth and patient treatment.

ATA has so much to offer, and like any major conference, if you step off the plane and walk into McCormick Place without a plan for how to spend the 3 days, it can easily become overwhelming. Here are a few tips to help maximize your time onsite:

  • Choose a variety of educational tracks – but pick them ahead of time. The learning sessions at ATA are far & wide. There are seminars, plenaries, roundtables, ePosters, Speaker Corners, In the Driver Seat sessions, and this year ATA has added interactive Ignite Sessions and Learning Labs. Based on your business and learning goals, you’ll of course want to choose tracks that are relevant to you, but it’s a good idea to check out a variety of these sessions if possible. Since there are so many to choose from and they overlap, however, don’t wait to get onsite to pick. Check out the agenda ahead of time and plan out your itinerary.
  • Be strategic about the Expo Hall—When you’re not attending a session, you’ll of course want to check out the booths presenting new platforms, apps, tools and services that are on the cutting edge of telehealth. With over 200 exhibitors on the floor, however, meandering through the aisles looking at all the offerings can quickly become exhausting and you may leave without seeing what you really came to see. It’s best to review the exhibitor’s list ahead of time and make a Top 20 or so of your “must-see” targets – visit them first, and then everything else is a cherry on top.
  • Make time for the Networking Events —No matter your goal for coming to ATA, networking with other industry professionals, including the speakers and innovators presenting research, is an important way to collaborate, learn more about what others are working towards to enhance the patient experience, and ultimately leave the meeting feeling invigorated. ATA offers 2 main networking events onsite, plus multiple other smaller events for specific interest groups.
  • Try People Matching — In addition to going to networking events, the ATA app offers a great way to set up meetings with other professionals who have the same interests and goals as you. This is more targeted 1:1 networking. If you haven’t done so already, it’s not too late. Set up your profile in the app, head to People Match, and look at your connections. Send anyone you’d like to meet a quick message, and see if they’d like to grab coffee onsite, or maybe even meet up at one of the Networking Events – it might make that happy hour a little more inviting to know you’ve got someone to look for.

Hope to see you in Chicago!

Melissa Baratta

Melissa is a Senior Vice President at Affect, where she uses her extensive background working with technology and healthcare companies to raise her clients’ brand profiles and position them as thought leaders in their respective industries. As an expert in stakeholder communications, she is adept at helping clients develop creative ways to communicate thoughtfully with their key audiences. Prior to joining Affect, Melissa served as Managing Director for Ricochet Public Relations.