Postponement of 2020 OpenHIE Community Meeting

After consulting with several organizations and individuals deeply involved with OpenHIE, we’ve made the difficult decision to postpone the 2020 OpenHIE Community Meeting in Malawi due to numerous concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic and related travel circumstances. This year’s event was scheduled to be held in October 2020 but taking into consideration the safety and health of the Lilongwe community, the host country, and our entire dedicated community, we are postponing the event until 2021.

Malawi participated in a competitive process to hold this year’s event and remains excited to host the 2021 Community Meeting. As the situation with the pandemic becomes clearer, we look forward to continuing the planning of a face-to-face meeting with the Malawi team. Community events are rewarding and we do great things whenever we come together. With this spirit in mind, we are looking at ways of bringing aspects of OpenHIE Community Meetings into virtual community events over the next year in order to stay connected and support the great work people are doing to advance health information exchange.

As we finalize details around virtual events and offerings, we will make sure to keep you posted here on Discourse and Twitter.

Our deepest sympathies go out to all of those around the world affected by this virus. Now more than ever, it has become apparent how connected we truly are and driven home the importance of health care systems and infrastructure. We are in this together. As always, thank you for your support and we look forward to seeing you all in Malawi in 2021! #WeAreOHIE

Further updates around the OpenHIE Community Meeting will be found on our website at


To make sure we are supporting the needs of our community we want to hear what types of meetings or training you would like to see this year in place of the usual OpenHIE Community Meeting. Below are examples of typical features included. If you could participate or see an virtual offerings what would you like to see? (note: you are not limited to this list we would like to hear all thoughts and opinions)

  • Implementation Experiences
  • Academy
  • Unconference
  • Showcases
  • Lightning Talks
  • Coffee Table/Networking
  • Hackathon
  • Site Visits
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Thank you for asking! I would like to see us have a hackathon of some type and to have countries and implementation partners be able to share their projects and success stories.

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Thanks Jen! So in regards to sharing projects we recently asked people to Help OpenHIE Recognize Your Success Stories and Works in Progress by taking a short survey. One of the benefits of sharing these stories will be to bring them to our existing OpenHIE Implementers Network (OHIN) calls which occur on the fourth Monday of the month where work can be highlighted and questions can be asked around issues. Second we would like to have some sort of hackathon event if doing so virtually seems possible. Are there certain topics you would like to see in an event like this? @daniel.futerman or @carl have either of you participated or run a virtual hackathon before? Are they common?

@jthomas We’ve been giving some thought as to how a virtual Hackathon could work, and Jembi is interested in continuing this discussion to see if/how we can support this. I think it presents a unique set of opportunities and challenges, but could work well. It may also be an opportunity to leverage some of the Instant OpenHIE work by setting up sandbox services in the cloud that attendees could use as a shared space to work on a few priority use cases.

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@daniel.futerman I’d love to hear your thoughts around a virtual Hackathon and how Instant OpenHIE might be able to be used. Could we jump on a call to talk about ideas?

@daniel.futerman I know we talked about a Hackathon a few weeks back and potentially having Instant OHIE as part of this but have since moved Instant OHIE as a demo to an upcoming OpenHIE Implementers Network call. Are you still interested in potentially having this a part of a Hackathon? @rstanley do you have thoughts on this idea?

I think an easy way of getting the core of the architecture stack into the hands of folks is always a good idea and showing Instant at the next implementer’s call will provide helpful feedback. But, I’ve not participated in a virtual hackathon yet, so looking forward to others feedback here.

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