Toby Hamilton, M.D., heads the Healthcare Innovators Professional Society.
Toby Hamilton, M.D., heads the Healthcare Innovators Professional Society.

Healthcare Innovators Professional Society gives hospital strategists a unique resource

Healthcare Innovators Professional Society gives hospital strategists a unique resource

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Toby Hamilton, Healthcare Innovators Professional Society

A chief innovation officer—sometimes called a chief strategy officer— is still a relatively new position at hospitals. One Texas Medical Center-based organization wants to bring the professionals in these positions together so they can help each other.

This week, Healthcare Innovators Professional Society (HIPS) kicked off its nonprofit aimed at providing chief innovation and chief strategy executives a place to get to know their colleagues across the country.

HIPS is headquartered in the TMC Innovation Institute’s TMCx+ incubator space.

The idea for HIPS came to Toby Hamilton, M.D., while he was heading Emerus Hospitals, a company that operates micro-hospitals around the nation.

Hamilton was developing joint venture relationships with other health care systems, working with their chief innovation and strategy officers, and realized these executives needed a way to bounce ideas off of each other.

“A CIO’s job is to identify opportunities for a health system,” said Hamilton, executive director of HIPS. “For most health care systems, this position only started coming around about 10 years ago.”

That means some of these people have resources, some don’t, and they operate, essentially, in a silo, Hamilton added.

HIPS is the process of inviting select members to be a part of the council, known as the Council of 33. Membership is exclusive, Hamilton said, meaning that members will not be from competing hospitals, whenever possible.

One of the first members is David Bradshaw, chief strategy and information officer at Memorial Hermann, who said, “Memorial Hermann has long acknowledged the need for a targeted strategy as we compete in a global health market. However, we also recognize the importance of collaboration. As the chief strategy officer of our integrated 19-hospital system, I saw the advantages of being part of this select group of forward-thinking executives. While each health care market is unique, we all stand to improve our operations by gleaning from both the successes and missteps of one another.”

In addition to providing these executives with a support system and a peer sounding board, HIPS will offer its councilors white papers, case studies and HIPS-specific blog content developed for and shared only with the HIPS community. Other benefits include access to leading health care incubators and accelerators as well as a diverse network of capital providers.

The organization’s first event for members will be held October 2-4 at the TMC Innovation Institute.

“These thought leaders want to work with as many companies as they can to help reduce health care costs for their hospital systems, but it’s hard to know where to start when they receive 2,000 emails from companies each month,” Hamilton said. “We want to help them with the who, what, when, why and how.”

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