Industry Insights

Musing from Music City – My ACHA/NCAL Experience

November 2016
Author:  Chris Murphy

Chris Murphy



Health Care

Two Warren Place
6120 S. Yale Avenue, Suite 1400
Tulsa, OK 74136-4223


I remembered a dream and enjoyed the moment’s irony as I took the stage in Music City in October for American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living’s (AHCA/NCAL) 2016 67th Annual Convention & Exposition. I’ve always been fascinated with Nashville, as I grew up playing western, swing and bluegrass with my father. I was in a couple of bands through the years and once had a paying gig.

Instead of taking the stage with my 1974 Sunburst Martin D-35 guitar, I went with two incredible and dedicated clinicians, Lara Cline and Loretta Kaes. We share a passion for improving care through cross-continuum collaboration.

The session, “Love the One You’re With! Building a Cross-Continuum Network,” discussed network building, improved care outcomes, designing cross-provider relationships and increasing communication and coordination for patients.

The idea jam session provided me with myriad ideas, and I appreciate Lara and Loretta sharing their talent with the industry.

I look forward to this convention every year because it attracts creative minds passionate about providing high-quality care to our elderly community. It’s more than educational sessions. I share ideas from the convention at the trade show, at networking events and in discussions with my long-term care and senior living team members. I use this event to invest in myself and bring back great ideas to share with clients.

These are my top takeaways from the week: 

  • Data is this year’s buzzword. As I spoke with professionals about helping providers leverage their data, I was reminded that data is useless unless someone knows how to use it to drive change. As you shop for data solutions, I encourage you to ensure your vendor candidates truly understand long-term care and can help drive change, not just crunch numbers. Data’s power comes from understanding data analytics, acute care providers and post-acute care providers and being able to operationalize findings across the entire continuum.
  • BKD hosted a low-key reception that included a whiskey tasting and sponsored the conference Wi-Fi, which the guests appreciated. I introduced a few clients and peers to Corsair’s Triple Smoke whiskey, a personal favorite.
  • If you weren’t able to attend the 2016 AHCA/NCAL conference, try to join BKD’s long-term care and senior living team next year in Las Vegas. You’re invited to stay connected and continue these conversations. Data can help drive real change, and we’re excited to help organizations use it to transform.
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