The Philippines, through the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), recently joined the Healthcare Information Management Systems Society (HIMSS) Annual Conference and Exhibition held at the Sands Expo Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The Health Information Management (HIM) sector, as one of the leading industries in the country, has significantly contributed to the government’s initiatives of providing employment opportunities to thousands of local nurses and to the growing business process management (BPM) sector. In 2014, it had 86,000 full-time employees (FTEs) and by 2016, the number of FTEs is expected to reach 135,000.

DTI Industry Promotion Group (IPG) Undersecretary Nora K. Terrado, who led the Philippine delegation to the US, said that the US roadshow aimed to further strengthen the country’s presence abroad and to exploit the growing demand in the HIM sector by attracting future investors and companies to invest in the Philippines. “With the growing US demand for healthcare information management services, we are now eyeing for more US healthcare companies in the Philippines, which in turn, will provide more job opportunities for Filipinos,” Terrado added.

Almost 75% of the US healthcare companies outsource their requirements to Asian countries. According to MarketsandMarkets, a notable research and consulting firm, “the healthcare industry makes up for 17.7% of the US GDP, approaching US$3 trillion in annual spend and is projected to grow to US$ 4.8 trillion by 2020, thereby increasing the outsourcing opportunity”. The Philippines, with its competitive advantage in English communication skills, strong customer service orientation and high adaptability to consumers’ Western culture, is among the top destinations of BPM companies in Asia.

“We want to position our country and our people as the best in providing services needed by investors in the BPM sector. Our people are highly competitive and our economy is getting better. With our improved economic climate, we are more confident by now that we can attract more US companies to invest in the Philippines in the coming year,” Terrado emphasized.

Considered as one of the biggest health information management conferences worldwide, this year’s HIMMS was participated by more than 1,200 exhibitors and more than 42,000 attendees from around the world. It featured exceptional education, world-class speakers, health IT-products, and powerful networking opportunities.

The Philippine delegation led by Undersecretary Terrado is composed of 15 government and major business process outsourcing (BPO) company representatives including Pointwest Technologies, SPi Global, Globe Telecom and Megaworld Corporation.

DTI’s Board of Investments (BOI) and the Philippine Trade and Investment Center in Los Angeles (PTIC-LA) in partnership with the Healthcare Information Management Association of the Philippines (HIMAP) organized the first participation of the Philippines at the HIMSS where a pavilion exhibited the local HIM/BPM companies’ competencies.

A business forum on the Health Information Management Sector in the Philippines was also conducted at the event with Consul General Leo Herrera-Lim of the Philippine Consulate General in LA giving the Opening remarks and Undersecretary Terrado providing an overview of the economic development in the country.

The delegation expects increased investments in the HIM-BPM sector as many US companies showed interest in the Philippines during the roadshow.

HIMMS The Philippine delegation at the Healthcare Information Management Systems Society (HIMSS) Annual Conference and Exhibition headed by Industry Promotion Group Undersecretary Nora K. Terrado (6th from left) in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA.