Monday, October 16, 2006

The Exhibit Hall is a Great Learning Place

One of my favorite ways to experience the annual NAHC Conference and Exhibit is to walk the aisles of the trade show. Each year, I am constantly amazed by the size of the exhibits, the number of vendors selling information technology, and the new inventions that were not hear last year.

This year, one of my focal points was to talk with IT vendors about the capabilities of their systems to provide CRM - Customer Relationship Management. This is a huge hole in the IT infrastructure of home care. Many of my clients are frustated because their home health care clinical and billing software won't interface with their CRM system. I talked with several IT vendors, and no one really addresses this problem. What's your experience? How do you capture data to help your sales and marketing team members focus on your most profitable referral sources? I'd love to hear from you.

Walking the trade show is also a great place to meet old friends from the industry. It has been wonderful seeing people who I've known for the 24 years I've been working in home care. For example, I ran into Mary Kay Perra, who was the Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Association for Home Health Agencies in 1982 when I spoke for a home care group for the first time. She's now living in New Mexico and doing some work with Joie Glenn and the home care association there. I won't go on and list all of the othe wonderful folks I talked with because I'll surely miss someone. But suffice it to say, the exhibit area is a great place to learn what's new in our industry and what's new with old friends.

I was surprised how few people were taking advantage of the show. Talking with many vendors, they were dissapointed with the traffic in their boothes.

What's your take on the Exhibit? What did you observe that others might like to know about? Comment below:


  1. Anonymous12:19 AM

    Unfortunately, this will continue and it's why many companies are not supporting NAHC and other med shows. Attendance has been down at almost all medical shows. it is not productive to pay top dollar for a booth when shows schedule exhibit hours in direct conflict with attendee lunch and with key lectures. The show suffers.

  2. Anonymous9:12 PM

    Most Home Health Care Agencies don't have the money to spend on what is being sold on these trade show floors. The only person "making money" is the person selling the booth space. So sad... so manipulated.

  3. Anonymous12:47 PM

    Both of these comments are accurate. As the number of attendees decreases, the fees charged to exhibitors increase and the number of total minutes when they have access to each other shrinks. Val cashes the checks and spends the money on giving himself an award.

    Some of the sessions were filmed this year. Maybe the whole thing should be on tv next year and the few people who attend could stay home.