Annual Conference on Health Information Technology & Analytics (CHITA) (Maryland)

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The landscape of healthcare is evolving, rapidly driven by the continuing digitization of medical information, innovations in technology, and policy developments. New challenges and opportunities continually emerge regarding the design, adoption, use, management, and evaluation of health information technology and analytics (HIT+A). Although there is ongoing research on HIT+A within multiple academic disciplines, much of this work occurs within silos.

The central goal of the annual Conference on Health IT & Analytics (CHITA), formerly the Workshop on Health IT & Economics, is to develop a HIT+A research agenda that supports national efforts to create a learning health system that produces evidence to make health care safer, of higher quality, more accessible, equitable, and affordable. Launched in 2009, this conference became the key health information technology (IT) research summit, gathering prominent scholars in a multidisciplinary setting while simultaneously engaging key stakeholder communities of policymakers and practitioners. Starting in 2017, the conference was renamed to CHITA to emphasize the importance of HIT+A. This current Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality-funded project supports the 2018, 2019, and 2020 CHITA conferences.

The specific aims of this annual conference are to:

  • Empower the next generation of health IT and analytics researchers. 
  • Foster a cross-disciplinary research community. 
  • Disseminate knowledge on HIT+A research. 

CHITA integrates the 2-day academic conference with a pre-conference doctoral consortium. The conference highlights distinctive perspectives from practitioner and policy domains and provides participants with a detailed scientific review of the research and an evidence base for HIT+A value creation. Academic presenters are encouraged to discuss the policy and practice implications of their findings, while policy and practice speakers identify knowledge gaps or areas that can benefit from scientific research.

During the conference, key findings, discussion points, data, and audience questions are documented. Policymakers and funding agencies are also offered a venue to share their strategic priorities, thereby gaining the opportunity to influence future research. These sessions are intended to identify policy-relevant research questions while fostering an ongoing dialogue. The conference concludes with a facilitated discussion with the audience led by senior researchers in order to synthesize themes and set a HIT+A research agenda, both of which are subsequently documented and disseminated as a published conference proceedings book of abstracts.