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Navigate: Highlights from the 2024 Annual User Conference

Wow! What an amazing week!

I’ve started the last three conference blogs with a similar sentence, but each of the previous three conferences have been better than the last! This year, more than 500 Azara clients, partners, and staff gathered in Boston’s Seaport district to learn, network, and celebrate. 

Pre-Conference Workshops

7e073e32-b96f-426f-a4e9-4518a9b5a95dBright and early Tuesday morning, we kicked things off with four pre-conference workshops. Attendees dove into all things DRVS, learning from Azara experts and collaborating with their peers. In the Beginner’s Bootcamp, new users brushed up on the basics of DRVS functionality and how to leverage data to support organization initiatives. Next door, the Quality Director’s Toolbelt dove into how DRVS supports programs like UDS and PCMH. In partnership with the American Medical Association, attendees at the Population Health to Manage Chronic Diseases workshop learned about best practices for improving A1c levels, blood pressure control, and CKD management and the tools available in DRVS to support chronic disease management. At the final workshop, Elevate Your Value-Based Care Game, participants gained valuable insights from industry experts on the transition to value-based care and key drivers for success in the contracting landscape. 

Conference Day 1

Opening Remarks-1Wednesday morning kicked off with opening remarks from Jeff Brandes, President & CEO of Azara. During this general session, Jeff shared a review of key Azara stats. As a lover of data, I appreciated seeing all of the numbers and different impacts that data has on our DRVS users. After Jeff gave us a strong foundation of the “why” of us here at Azara (and a little trip down memory lane), David Smith, CEO and Founder if Third Horizon Strategies offered a compelling view as to what is wrong with the structure of the current healthcare landscape and offered ideas on how we can use data to drive improvements in payment and create a value-driven environment. 

One of my favorite parts of the conference is having the opportunity to learn and share how actual DRVS users leverage the Azara suite of tools to drive change and improve outcomes in their populations. This year, attendees had plenty of opportunities to hear from their peers, with 20 of our 24 breakout sessions driven by client presenters. We also brought back the “Pretty Darn Quick” or PDQ session, where the audience heard from 5 different organizations on how they found success using different aspects of DRVS. 

Product Update-1The Azara User Conference is choc-a-bloc with learning and networking, but that doesn’t mean we can’t have a little fun as well. Greg Augustine, Azara’s Chief Product and Technology Officer, was presented with the “Module of the Year” award in a Barbie-themed video (this year’s award goes very nicely with his “Azara Idol” crown from last conference). Greg also shared recently released features and enhancements to look forward to.

After the success of last year’s DRVS User Celebration, we brought back the incredible band, Soul City, for a night of dancing and fun. I was very impressed by some of the dance moves I witnessed that night (my own legs may or may not be still a little bit sore!). Some attendees also took advantage of being in the best sports town in the world and got to visit the historical Fenway Park for a Red Sox game or cheer on the Celtics in their playoff journey. 

Conference Day 2

Panel 2Thursday morning’s panel session, Health Equity – Not Additive; Foundational, offered attendees a compelling mix of TED-style presentations from our panelists, as well as a robust discussion on how we can include health equity in all of the work we do. Bianca Mayes, Dr. Cheryl Clark, and Dr. Diana Ferran showed us how we can navigate toward a brighter future for healthcare, where every individual, community, and care team thrives. 

The three days of the conference flew by, and before we knew it, attendees were traveling back to 40+ states from whence they came. I truly believe that attendees were able to gain new knowledge and connections for using DRVS and were able to take back all they learned to their organizations to make a difference in patient care, population outcomes, and value-based care success. I can’t wait to see everyone back in Boston next spring. 

Finally, a huge thank you to our 2024 Conference Supporters: Upstream and the American Medical Association!

Hold the April 29 to May 1, 2025, as I am already looking forward to hear all of the incredible things DRVS users have achieved using data in the coming year. 

Anchors aweigh!